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Transformers: Dark of the Moon Review Critics


Dave White Profile

A smashing time. Read full review


Grae Drake Profile

Berserker Madness Read full review

Other Critics provided by

Critics scores range from 0 to 100, with higher scores indicating more favorable reviews.

  • 3.0

    out of 100

    Mixed or average reviews
    based on a weighted average of all
    critic review scores.

  • 50

    out of 100

    USA Today Claudia Puig

    Stinting on story, dialogue or character development, Bay leaves us with little more than destruction and a hollow, clanking spectacle.

    Read Full Review

  • 50

    out of 100

    The Hollywood Reporter Kirk Honeycutt

    The millions of man hours put into producing this techno shock and awe must be staggering. Everyone got his job done, but somewhere along the way, the movie got lost.

    Read Full Review

  • 75

    out of 100

    Entertainment Weekly Lisa Schwarzbaum

    Dark of the Moon is hardly a fleet production, but here Bay makes his best, most flexible use yet of all the flamboyant bigness at his command: Computer-drawn characters and human actors seem to occupy the same narrative for once.

    Read Full Review

  • See all Transformers: Dark of the Moon reviews at

For Families provided by Common Sense Media

OK for kids 13+

Slightly better than No. 2 but still crude and very violent.

What Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that the third installment in the blockbuster Transformers franchise is less crude than the first sequel but more violent than the original. Tween and teen boys in particular will be interested in seeing this movie, but even younger kids who are familiar with the Hasbro toys may be curious about yet another live-action adaptation. Like all of director Michael Bay's films, there's a constant threat to all the characters -- in fact, humanity in general -- and an accompanying body count to match that sense of peril. Some robot deaths are particularly startling. Language is edgy, with frequent uses of "a--hole," "bitch," and "s--t" and two variations on the F-bomb. This is a dream movie for car, weapon, and military aficionados, but not so much for young girls, since the only three women in the film are stereotypes -– the young blond "hottie," the tough older careerist, and the wisecracking middle-aged mom.

  • Families can talk about the movie's nonstop violence. How does the filmmaker differentiate between Transformer-on-Transformer violence and violence against humans? Do you think the director gets away with depicting more violence because Transformers aren't people?
  • Although there's less stereotyping here than in the previous movie in the series, what are some instances in which characters of a particular gender, ethnic, or racial group are depicted in a stereotypical manner?
  • Despite the number of attractive male characters, why does the movie focus so much more on the leading actress' body? What message does that send audiences?
  • Nearly every scene features a product placement; is this realistic (because people do use particular brands) or is it distracting?

The good stuff
  • message true-1

    Messages: Despite the requisite underlying themes of friendship and loyalty, there are a couple of shady messages about what it takes to succeed as a woman (be beautiful and sexy) and a few negative stereotypes and jokes.

  • rolemodels true1

    Role models: Optimus Prime, Bumblebee, and the other Autobots are extremely loyal to Sam and humans in general, even when the government turns against them. Sam also will stop at nothing to help his Autobot friends and to save the love of his life. Other characters are brave, but it's their job to defend the innocent.

What to watch for
  • violence false4

    Violence: Incessant loud, explosion-based violence, usually featuring the robotic Transformers and human beings. The evil Transformers don't care about collateral human damage, and they routinely cause mass destruction to buildings, bridges, cars, and even national monuments like the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C. There's a high body count, even though the camera never lingers on any human death (it does linger on Transformer deaths, including those of sympathetic secondary characters and one that's particularly gruesome). The military (including the Air Force special ops and Navy SEALs) uses technologically advanced weapons and gear to battle the Transformers that are threatening to turn humans into a slave race.

  • sex false3

    Sex: No outright sex, but every scene Carly is in features her in either underwear (the actress is a famous Victoria's Secret model) or a revealing outfit. She and Sam kiss in bed and several other times. Her entire purpose is to be attractive and have others make comments about her "hotness." Sam's mother makes inappropriate references to sex and even speculates about how "big" he is to have had two gorgeous girlfriends. In one scene, a sexily dressed Latina character is referred to as a "hoochie mama," and her anger is called a "Latin meltdown."

  • language false4

    Language: Surprisingly frequent use of the following words: "a--hole," "bitch," "s--t," "hell," "damn," "crap," "ass," "d--khead," and "oh my God." One mouthed "f--k," and one memorably (and humorously) said "clusterf--k."

  • consumerism false5

    Consumerism: Not only is the entire series based on Hasbro toys, but there's also an extremely high number of product placements: from cars (General Motors, Mercedes, Corvette, and more) to electronics (Apple computers, iPad, Lenovo desktops) to water (Arrowhead) and apparel (Adidas, Nike, etc.).

  • drugsalcoholtobacco false1

    Drinking, drugs and smoking: At a couple of dinner parties, adults are shown briefly with glasses in hand.