With four movies released and a fifth coming out next year, many are familiar with Michael Bay’s live-action films of the popular Transformers franchise. The not as well-received sequel Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen had its memorable moments, but fell short as a whole. With a very limited window of time, the script and movie were rushed to completion, thus resulting in a rather disappointing plot for both old and new fans alike. However, if the novel adaptation’s author, Alan Dean Foster, had been in charge of writing the movie’s script along with its novel, the movie could have been much more intriguing.
The Decepticons were defeated when their leader, Megatron, fell during the battle of Mission City. With the victorious Autobots now working with the humans, the world was thought to be safe once more. However, when a dying Decepticon gives a warning of an ancient threat returning, a new battle is on the rise that may turn into an all-out war. College-bound Sam Witwicky holds more vital information to help save the world, but will the Autobots be able to keep him safe from the relentless Decepticons or the newly-resurrected Megatron?
Foster most certainly redeemed Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen through his novel adaptation by including what could be considered “deleted scenes” that help to explain rushed plot points while also cleaning up mistake scenes in the movie and fixing plot holes only über fans of the franchise would catch. For the first half of the movie, the book expands more on the friendship between Optimus and Sam and how much they truly rely on each other. The book also explains what Alice truly is and how that Decepticon was able to acquire a “human” form.
The rushed plot points really come about in the second half of the movie, when all of the characters arrive in Egypt. These scenes would mainly be caught by the fans who are more familiar with the Transformers franchise as a whole. Foster, thankfully, corrects these mistakes; two of the main ones found in scenes with Jetfire. When Jetfire transports the humans to Egypt, he mentions in the movie that he opened a space bridge. Space bridges in the series are actual large teleporting bridges and it is not possible for a Transformer to randomly open one on his own. Foster corrected this by referring to their teleportation as “transspatial porting” (Foster 222). One of the biggest plot holes only über fans would catch would be the number of Primes mentioned. In the movie, Jetfire says there were seven Primes at the beginning of time when, according to Transformers mythology, there were actually thirteen. While they are not named, Foster does include the Thirteen original Primes, thus remaining accurate to the mythology.
While Foster helped to clean up the story of Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen, the movie is most certainly to be commended for its battle sequences. The battle scenes are perhaps the only areas Foster struggles in, not giving them the attention that is due to them. This is where the special effects team shines in all of the Transformers movies. The robots look amazingly realistic in the movies and fighting scenes such as the beginning battle in Shanghai and the end battle between Optimus, Megatron, and the Fallen are to be seen and enjoyed. Of all the fighting scenes to watch in the movie, perhaps the most memorable is the forest battle where Optimus takes on three Decepticons single-handedly to save Sam.
Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen is not the most memorable of sequels in a movie franchise; however, it is a sequel that can become memorable if the movie is paired with its novel adaptation as the two together create an excellent combination. While the aforementioned additions add to the story and fix plot holes, there are even more additions readers and fans, both old and new, will come across on their own. With Foster taking on the novel adaptation of the first movie as well as its prequel and the sequel’s prequel, he has succeeded once more in bringing justice to the rather jumbled and rushed storyline that is Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen, adding more to the story if viewers and fans are interested in learning more of the story.