(Theoretically Speaking) Top 5 Things Michael Bay Needs To Make A Good Movie

Top 5 Things Michael Bay Needs To Make A Good Movie
by Bret Dorman

Michael Bay "directing" Optimus Prime

Michael Bay is the Crappiest Director Ever and his movies suck! Case in Point: Armageddon. Pearl Harbor. Transformers 2.

Michael Bay isn’t the Crappiest Director Ever and he actually is one of the best Directors of Destruction! Case in Point: The Rock. Bad Boys 2. Transformers 3.

The real point is… whether or not you like his movies… the man knows how to rip shit up. Him and his stunt team toss around Hummers and Armored Semis like they were mere Micro Machines. Case in Point:

I’m sure Transformers 3 will be a hit and make tons of money (if it already hasn’t from ancillary rights) and that means Michael Bay can do anything he wants (given he isn’t contractually obligated to something else).

A lot of people like to pick on Bay and make fun of his movies for the flaws that are inherent in big Summer Blockbuster like the ones he makes. That’s like going to an elementary school play and picking on the kids for all their mistakes and the ‘bad writing’. Only difference is Bay is a kid with Giant Explosions and Robots for ‘actors’.

Here are my Top 5 was to help improve Bay’s next movie and make it a hit the critics won’t want to pick on… or at least one I can defend better:

5) Keep It Under 2 Hours

Let’s take a look at Bay’s Filmography…

Transformers 3 – 154 Minutes
Transformers 2 – 150 Minutes
Transformers – 144 Minutes
The Island – 136 Minutes
Bad Boys 2 – 147 Minutes
Pearl Harbor – A Whopping 183 Minutes
Armageddon – 136 Minutes
Bad Boys – 118 Minutes

So with the exception of his very first feature length film that was shot a Decade and a Half ago (95) and was JUST BARELY under the 2 hours mark… all of his films have been WAY too long.

Will Smith demonstrates how long "Bad Boys 2" is...

I love Bad Boys 2, but even I admit that one is just a tad bit too much. I’m willing to sit through it because I enjoy the antics of Marcus Burnett and Mike Lowry (Mike… Laaaoooowwwrrryyyyyy) and the action is top notch. However, even the latest Transformers movie, which I did like, is in some serious need of trimming down.

Michael Bay makes Action Movies that are nothing more than fun exhilarating thrill rides. In order to make a fun and exhilarating thrill ride effective, it helps to keep the moments inbetween the action light and short. That doesn’t mean you can’t give weight to them, but you have to realize people are basically coming to these movie primarily for the action. So why keep them from that and try to give them more stuff (i.e. an overly complicated ‘plot’ that takes way too much explanation/set up or side plots that amount to nothing)… when that stuff is hindering the Primary Reason for the movies existing in the first place?

I’d like to see Bay’s next film come in at a tight 1 hour and 45 minutes.

4) Good Actors being Quirky Characters

If Transformers 3 taught me anything… its that good actors can make a bad script WAY more tolerable, if not enjoyable. True, John Malkovich and Francis McDormand did not need Transformers as much as Transformers needed them. Some people will complain that Transformers is a Stain on their Record but come on… Francis McDormand being in Transformers 3 in no way diminishes how awesome she is in Fargo. Besides would you rather have crappy actors in those roles?

As far as the quirky characters go this is just a general rule of thumb for any Action Blockbuster. We’ve all seen normal boring people in these movies or just standard stereotypes, so why not give them a quirk? Does this make the characters more 3 Dimensional? No. But it makes them more fun to watch. We aren’t going for realistic or emotionally moving. We are are going for Popcorn Entertainment.

Finally on this point, once you do have your good actors being quirky characters don’t just waste them. I’m talking about Bad Boys 2 and they way they kind of just dismiss Peter Stormare as Alexei aka The Russian Grim Reaper in the third act. Once you have these cool characters, make sure you give them something to do.

Spoilers for Fargo… in this Vid:

3) No Giant Robots

I know I’ll sound like a broken record here but I did not hate Transformers 3. The simple fact is, one director doing three movies in a series is more than enough. Let’s see what else they got. I don’t need to see another Raimi Spider-Man movie or another Nolan Batman movie (after The Dark Knight Rises comes out of course) or another Jackson Lord of the Rings/Hobbit based movie.

Replace LeBeouf with Bay... he just needs to run away from those Pesky Robots...

Can Transformers survive without Bay? Of course? Will they be as good? Some parts probably not, some parts perhaps. The point isn’t Bay is better than having Giant Robots in his movies, the point is three is enough to say what needs to have been said and to have done what needed to be done.

Besides, as cool as it is to see Giant Robots on the screen doing damage, its more impressive (to me at least) to see scenes like The Island one from above. I want to see PEOPLE fighting PEOPLE. Not giant robots or a big space rock. Can these people use weapons? Can they drive cars? Can they blow stuff up? Of course. But let’s keep the focus on the people doing it and the people getting crushed by giant dumb bell things.

2) Damage (un)Controlled

Bay’s strength is action. And not even action in the sense of just exciting things happening that put characters in danger and make moments of the movie suspenseful. I mean complete and utter destruction.

Whatever his next movie is, he needs to raise the stakes. He needs to make the biggest explosion ever seen on film. He needs to launch a car 100 feet in the air and have it take down and airplane while people jump from the airplane and land in convertibles that are driving over 100 MPH and have them firing machine guns at each other while tanks shoot giant skyscrapers all around them. He needs to buy a small country and blow it up. Someone give this man a nuclear bomb.

I’m talking about something that’s at least twice the destruction in this scene:

“You see that?!”
“They throwin cars! How I not see that?!”

1) Me

Without any ego I can honestly say I can provide Bay with all of the above. I will write him a nice tight script. I will give him quirky characters and personally talk to any actors who don’t want to come aboard and convince them how awesome the movie will be. I will not write a Transformers movie. It will not be based off any franchise or book or show. And I will be standing at his side whispering in his ear “What if instead of one tank blowing up… we have two?!”

A Dorman/Bay action movie would be one of the craziest things to ever exist not just in the history of cinema, nor the history of mankind, but the history of time itself. The awesome power of the Big Bang would be a distant second to the destruction we would cause. In fact, any movie that has action in it and is yet-to-be released, when our movie comes out all the action will be erased. People will need to rebuild the Action Section of Movieland brick by brick, bullet by bullet, body by body.

A Dorman/Bay Action Movie would be used as a Global Population Control Device. After viewing our movie, heads will explode. The population will drop. There would be no more jobless because there would be plenty of work cleaning up the aftermath.

I wrote/shot this preview for the new upcoming Total Recall Remake… and that’s just a sample of the mindset that would be incorporated into our Mega Movie:

So Michael Bay, if you are reading this, I’m ready and willing…. Let’s rip shit up.

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