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Kyla’s Movie Review

THE ROVER (R) - Starring Guy Pearce, Tawanda Manyimo, Scott McNairy, David Feld, Scott Perry, and Robert Pattinson. The Rover follows the semi-comatose Eric (Pearce) through the wasteland of broken cars, broken people and broken morals. The apocalypse or “the collapse” happened a decade ago, leaving the survivors to ponder their purpose as they struggle to rebuild the society with little more than rusty steel and old canned goods. Actually they aren’t even struggling to rebuild anymore. Most of them have given up and surrendered to the lawlessness. Only men and old women are around, which means everyone is pretty grumpy, especially Eric. Someone stole his car. Three guys with guns just smashed the window and jacked it as he was sitting in a dilapidated cafe, minding his own business. Then all hell breaks loose. Eric wants his car back, and when he stumbles into the brother (Pattinson) of one of the thieves (McNairy), he decides to set off on a mission to reclaim the sedan. His quest doesn’t make much sense, since he has another ride, but no one questions his motivation because it doesn’t matter. People are executed at random by other people with guns, and nobody much cares about consequences, which means it’s almost impossible for us to care as an audience. Nobody is redeemable in this film. No one is likable. This movie is cold and ugly and unlovable at every level. RATING: D

TRANSFORMERS: AGE OF EXTINCTION (PG-13) - Starring Mark Wahlberg, Stanley Tucci, Kelsey Grammer, Nicola Peltz, Jack Reynor, Titus Welliver, Peter Cullen (voice), and John Goodman (voice). Directed by Michael Bay. Wahlberg plays Cade Yeager, a Texas inventor who is about to lose his home. It’s five years after the events of “Transformers: Dark of the Moon” (2011) and battle of Chicago. For some reason the “Autobots” (the good Transformers) are now considered the enemy and are being slowly eradicated by a government black ops group headed by Harold Attinger (Grammar). It’s at this moment that Cade finds a beat up old truck that is really Optimus Prime, leader of the Autobots. When the government swoops down on Cade and threatens his daughter Tessa (Peltz), he gets mad, and throws in his lot with Optimus Prime. The rest of the movie consists of chasing and fighting, with yet another battle of Chicago and then, if that wasn’t enough, moving the action to China for another battle in Hong Kong. It turns out that Attinger is in cahoots with Joshua Joyce (Tucci), who is recycling and deconstructing the robotic debris to create a new generation of transformers. Meanwhile there are still other robots, also bad, who are working with Attinger for reasons of their own. So for nearly three hours, Michael Bay has the good robots fight the bad robots and introducing new ones with little explanation. Most of the action scenes with the robots are tedious, although the showdown between two humans, Cade and black ops leader James Savoy (Welliver), actually shows some spark. The movie is way too long, loud and flashy. The story isn’t confusing, but while watching it, the sense of chaos is almost overwhelming. RATING: C-