Have we really seen the last of Michael Bay’s Transformers? The runaway success of the franchise, which has long raised its middle finger at our collective intelligence, would seem to suggest otherwise, but if Dark of the Moon is the final chapter of this inane trilogy, it is also the least insulting.
Its title an acknowledged nod to Pink Floyd’s classic 1972 album – expect Captain America: Born in the U.S.A. sometime soon – Moon is the most visually coherent entry in the Transformers saga, and for a merchandising juggernaut designed to appeal more to the eyes than the intellect, that’s a small but significant victory.
If you’ve seen one Final Destination movie, you’ve seen them all. Actors drift in and out of the series, forever linking themselves to the mythology dreamed up a decade ago by screenwriter Jeffrey Reddick, but their on-screen fate remains as inevitable as death itself. The reaper is coming, and he doesn’t take no for an answer.
Has Juno backlash lasted this long? Early returns on the Rotten Tomatoes chat boards suggest so, as hysterical fanboys take turns skewering screenwriter Diablo Cody’s Oscar-winning debut and predicting dire things indeed for her latest, the hugely entertaining horror-comedy Jennifer’s Body.
Bashing Juno? That’s so 2007. It’s true that Cody’s dialogue is sometimes gratingly self-satisfied, laced with glib pop-culture references and slang that sounds more scripted than organic. That hasn’t changed. But there is something approaching brilliance in Jennifer’s Body, her macabre tale of teenage friendship gone awry in the sleepy backwoods of Devil’s Creek, Minnesota.
Diablo Cody is living the Hollywood dream.
If that sounds trite, consider her circumstances. Born Brook Busey, Cody (who adopted her pen name in 2003 after repeatedly listening to "El Diablo" by the pop trio Arcadia while passing through Cody, Wyoming) attended parochial school in Illinois for 12 years before moving on to the University of Iowa. After graduating, she tore through a string of "dismal" jobs - among them, working as a secretary at a Chicago law firm and proofreading advertising copy for Minneapolis-area radio stations - until, on a whim, she took up stripping, often billing herself as Bonbon or Roxanne.
Despite the adulation of her fans and the editors of heavy-breathing men’s magazines like Maxim who routinely rank her among the world’s most gorgeous starlets, Megan Fox doesn’t want to get by on looks alone. What she really wants is longevity.
“I was thrown into a movie that made $800 million,” she says, referring to Michael Bay’s Transformers. “That’s responsible for whatever level of success I’ve come to enjoy. It’s nice if people think I’m pretty, but the scary part about it is that I might not be given a chance to be much more than that."