Dear Mr Bay,
Years ago I went to the cinema to see a film called The Rock. I enjoyed it immensely, it had a great cast, an excellent story and was a totally competent action film. In fact it remains one of my favorite action films to date. I had high hopes for your next feature, sadly I was presented with Armageddon. A film so laughingly unbelievable I cannot bring myself to waste another 2 hours to re-watch it. Armageddon asked for a level of disbelief I could not afford, especially considering a more realistic Deep Impact was released in the same year. Just when I thought I was over Armageddon you followed it up with the abomination of Pearl Harbor. A movie I could not detest anymore if I wanted to. How could you take a story that affected so many lives and turn it not only into a love triangle, but a completely biased and unapologetic action movie?! Some people call it a drama, well, it is certainly melodramatic, but the consequences of this film were far more hurtful than entertaining. So by this point I was avoiding your movies like the plague. Bad Boys II came and went and I didn't even raise an eyebrow, you started producing Horror Movie remakes (a personal pet peeve of mine and something I intend to write about in the very near future) in the form of Texas Chainsaw Massacre and The Amityville Horror, which only started to rub salt in the already open wound I had about your work. Then, something amazing happened. I saw a trailer for The Island. Maybe it was my mood at the time or the stars were aligned a certain way...who knows, but it actually appealed to me. So to my amazement I decided I would give you another chance and went to an opening night screening.
For the first 30 or 40 minutes I was in movie heaven, an awesome story, a great cast, excellent cinematography, a great score....this movie had everything I was hoping for.......at least until your clones escaped. The last 1/4 of your movie was a complete let down. You raised the stakes so high with your opening and then pulverized them with your amazingly stupid and overly complicated action sequences. Until last week, I thought the opening 40 minutes of The Island was your best work. What happened you may ask, well I shall tell you.
Clonus: The Parts Horror
This film made in 1979, is everything I hoped The Island would be, in fact, if it had gotten your budget I imagine it may have been one of my favorite films. Sadly it had a budget of just over $250,000 (The Island's budget was $40million), but it has something The Island is sorely missing. A story, a devastating and very real story without compromise. Now I know you aren't to blame for the story, you are only the director, but if you had directed simply what was written I would bet money your film would be greatly superior. If a $250,000 movie can move me, and make a social statement even with its wooden acting, cheap sets and poor dialog, your movie should have me in tears and create a storm of controversy....well I guess it did that, at least with fans of Clonus.
I appreciate that not everyone goes to the movies to learn something, and I love a good popcorn movie as much as anyone. The Rock is one of the best examples of this, in fact even Transformers has some merit in this category. I simply ask that you make your movies even remotely believable. If you have $40million dollars to spend and your CGI bill is $30million, then something is wrong. I would happily watch a movie made using lego bricks if the story was original and engaging.
A Movie Patron
More info on Clonus here
You can check out the court documents regarding the case brought against Warner and Dreamworks over Copyright Infringement here.