Yet backed by a nearly US$200 million budget, and green-lit by executive producer Steven Spielberg, Transformers 3: Dark of the Moon is an experience worthy of the franchise.
The US-USSR space race serves as a backdrop for the film, and footage featuring Kennedy JFK's speeches and the moon mission are intercut into the film.
A sophisticated technology of the Autobots (the good transformers) allows the creation of a space bridge, which the Decepticons (the baddies) hope to use to bring Cybertron, the Transformers' planet, to Earth, and make humans their slaves.
Led by Optimus Prime (voiced by Peter Cullen), the Autobots, along with Sam (Shia LaBeouf) and girlfriend Carly (Rosie Huntington-Whiteley), are out to save humanity. Optimus Prime's voice is awesome. All they need now is the classic transformation sound from the cartoon, and we'd all be in Transformers heaven.
Realistically, the trailer could have been used as a substitute for the first 15 minutes of the film, and the final battle scene is far too long. But even then, the film is an absolute joy.
Combine the special effects, 3D (it really adds to the intense action) and rumble seats (which some cinemas are equipped with), and Dark of the Moon is the ultimate thrill-ride experience.