Showing posts with label travis knight. Show all posts
Showing posts with label travis knight. Show all posts

Monday, 10 December 2018

Bumblebee is much more than meets the eye

When a Bumblebee spin-off was originally announced many fans (myself included) baulked at the idea of another tired Transformers movie! Director Michael Bay had gone from a fun Steven Spielberg-produced rollercoaster ride with a heart to a cold, confusing, mechanical mess spanning 5 increasingly overblown instalments.

However, director Travis Knight’s (Kubo and the Two Strings) soft reboot returns to the fabled Generation 1 (G1) source: an era rich in nostalgia, lore and synonymous with timeless Spielbergian suburbia. The eighties, where Knight and this fellow Transformers fan came of age. It's 1987 when Rick Astley was number one in the charts and Michael Jackson followed up Thriller with Bad.

Now, as someone who is averse to spoiling things, the opening of Bumblebee evoked the sense of wonder this lifelong Star Wars fan had when seeing JJ Abrams' The Force Awakens in 2015. It's a mission statement that will transport fans back to the original animated series, movie and the hallowed pages of Marvel's weekly comic in a way Bay has failed miserably to do since 2007.

In the wake of familial tragedy. This is a Transformers movie scaled back into something entirely character-driven with shades of The Iron Giant and Batteries Not Included. In doing so, Knight creates a poignant prequel with a humble VW bug, Hailee Steinfeld is fantastic as Charlie who befriends the Autobot scout forming a relationship that echoes Elliott and E.T. in Spielberg's most autobiographical film, and Bumblebee becomes the best live-action film from the franchise...

Wednesday, 28 November 2018

Director Travis Knight talks G1-inspired Bumblebee

With only a few weeks to go until the holiday release of Bumblebee, Paramount Pictures has posted a featurette and TV spots for director Travis Knight's highly-anticipated Transformers reboot starring Hailee Steinfeld.

Director Travis Knight on what the Transformers means to him. "I'm a child of the 80s. I grew up playing with the Transformers action figures and I grew up watching the animated series," Knight said. "Going back to my experience as a kid, Autobots were always cars, Decepticons were always aircraft."

Bumblebee merchandise is starting to hit store shelves ahead of the movie's release and the quality of Hasbro's products is phenomenal. Hoping Santa Claus will leave a Bumblebee and Soundwave action figure under the tree, just like in the eighties, this Christmas.

Monday, 24 September 2018

Transformers spin-off Bumblebee brings G1 nostalgia

Paramount Pictures has released an official trailer for Bumblebee, starring Hailee Steinfeld, and it's pure nostalgia for G1 fans (myself included) featuring Decepticons Soundwave and Shockwave battling Autobot leader Optimus Prime on Cybertron. Surely Megatron will appear in all his G1 glory and transform into a Walther P38?

The Transformers spin-off is a welcome reboot for the franchise and sees director Travis Knight replacing Michael Bay at the helm. Like JJ Abrams, Knight is unashamedly channelling classic Amblin movies from the eighties as he tells Empire magazine:

"Growing up in the eighties, the most powerful stories were the Amblin stories. They had a thinking brain; a strong, beating heart; and a poetic soul. They evoked wonder and laughter and tears every single time. So knitting those two things together: my love of Transformers and my love of Spielberg and Amblin, was something I really wanted to evoke in this film. And it didn't hurt that Steven Spielberg was an executive producer on the movie! Having this guy who has been an icon for me my entire life and being able to collaborate with him and make this film in a way that evokes what was so special about those movies to me as a kid was a joy."

Bumblebee is shaping up to be the live-action Transformers movie I've always wanted since the animated series, movie and Marvel comic from the eighties. If Stan Bush's The Touch is played during the movie, there'll be tears of joy from this Transformers fan. In Travis Knight I trust.

Let's hope Hasbro has enough tie-in toys in stock because these are going to fly off the shelves. Especially as there's no Star Wars movie in cinemas this December.

Thursday, 14 June 2018

Bumblebee director inspired by Spielbergian tales

Following the first teaser trailer for Transformers spin-off Bumblebee starring Hailee Steinfeld and John Cena. Paramount Pictures has released a featurette introducing director Travis Knight (Kubo and the Two Strings).

“At Laika, we try to find an artful balance of darkness and light and intensity and warmth and humor and heart,” Knight said. “The idea of being able to bring that kind of philosophy to Bumblebee was really exciting.”

The first teaser for Bumblebee seemingly taps into the current nostalgia for the eighties epitomised by Netflix's Stranger Things.

“I was a child of the ‘80s. I grew up loving those classic, Spielbergian coming-of-age tales, and that was something that I wanted to bring to Bumblebee,” Knight added.

With Knight's proven pedigree in animation and storytelling, Bumblebee could be the surprise heartfelt hit of the holiday season and the Transformers film fans (myself included) deserve.

What are your thoughts? Let me know in the comments below.

Wednesday, 6 June 2018

Bumblebee reboots Transformers this holiday season!

Paramount Pictures has dropped the first official teaser trailer for the upcoming Transformers live-action spin-off, Bumblebee.

"On the run in the year 1987, Bumblebee finds refuge in a junkyard in a small Californian beach town. Charlie (Hailee Steinfeld), on the cusp of turning 18 and trying to find her place in the world, discovers Bumblebee, battle-scarred and broken. When Charlie revives him, she quickly learns this is no ordinary, yellow VW bug."

All the feels. My generation grew up with Hasbro's inspired rebranding - with a lot of help from Marvel - of Takara's Japanese puzzle toys Diaclone and Micro Change, and I wasn't expecting something that would resonate so deeply. Bumblebee was one of the very first Transformers I owned and the beloved Autobot stood sentry, alongside his leader Optimus Prime, in my childhood bedroom.

I'm getting a The Love Bug and The Iron Giant vibe. The prequel is seemingly a soft reboot of the Transformers live-action franchise harkening back to the Generation 1 (G1) era from the eighties. And with director Michael Bay no longer at the helm, there's a genuine pathos and sense of wonder that has been sorely absent since the first live-action movie which owed much to executive producer Steven Spielberg.

Bumblebee, directed by Travis Knight (Kubo and the Two Strings) and starring Hailee Steinfeld (Edge of Seventeen), is in cinemas this December. Could this be a new beginning for the Hasbro cinematic universe including G.I. Joe, M.A.S.K., Micronauts, ROM: Spaceknight, Visionaries and Power Rangers? Excuse me whilst I rewatch the excellent Transformers instalment of The Toys That Made Us now streaming on Netflix.

Looking forward to Bumblebee? Let me know in the comments below.