Column: People sacrifice substance in entertainment for more flash

Blake Warman, Staff Reporter

With the summer halfway finished, and still more movies to watch, the fact that “Transformers: Age of Extinction” is making $100 million at the opening box office says a lot about the state of our culture.

Alongside movies such as “Guardians of the Galaxy,” “Dawn of the Planet of the Apes” and “X-Men: Days of Future Past,” the newest installment in the “Transformers” franchise lacks substance, character development and tells all we need to know about the direction of our society.

I put more faith in this film than I probably should have; I trusted Mark Wahlberg’s acting to push the movie to a better standard for me but with the script and characters presented this time around that wasn’t the case.

So naturally after the movie was released the movie reviews came tumbling in with low ratings where currently “Transformers” holds an IMDB rating of 6.4. The only thing I didn’t expect was the movie becoming a box office smash overnight earning $100 million dollars in just one weekend and becoming the top movie in the Top 10 list.

This is a somewhat scary fact that movies may become more special for their special effects and not the actors or script on hand.

Understandably explosions and robots “transforming” from cars to robots can be interesting — that is if you are talking about stuff we have seen three movies ago.

Audience-wise, it seems we are so caught up with effects that we can put a horrible script or acting in the back of our minds.

Director Michael Bay seemingly has just found a money making formula to send willing victims to the theaters and waist a money for a ticket just to see something blow up.

This in turn means that many audiences may be having a shift on what they perceive as a good movie.

For people this is the possibility that movies are not getting by with just clever script and dialogue anymore but people need good effects to be able to catch their attention. This is natural seeing how we live in an age where video games are getting more and more graphically enhanced where we can see the beads of sweat on computer generated NBA players.

On paper, it shows we care more about effects driven films like “Transformers” than movies like “Rise of the Planet of The Apes,” which offer the best of both worlds.

This also could suggest that we are moving out of an age where just script and plot are not enough to keep an audience engaged.

You can compare movies like “Gravity” or “Lord of the Rings” that used a lot of effects even “Lord of the Rings” with CGI, which was used to make actor Andy Serkis the creature Gollum that you see in the movie.

If anything affects should be used to help add quality to the actors presenting the story.

Blake Warman is a junior communication studies major. He can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected].