How Was the 1986 Transformers Movie?

Exploring why it is worth watching after all these years, opinions about the movie from different perspectives, and The moment we finally find our hero.

I revisited the film by listening to the audio of the movie in its entirety and doing some research while I wrote this post. I also watched a couple of scenes more attentively.

  1. History of Classic Transformers

Micro Change and Diaclone, two Japanese toy lines, were the inspiration behind Transformers. They introduced robots ready to change into regular vehicles, electronic things, or weapons. Hasbro bought the Micro Change and Diaclone toys and partnered with Takara.

The TakaraTomy company makes toys in Japan. They are the maker of Transformers in Japan and plan a significant part of the design for Transformers toys.

Brand: Hasbro

Toys initially created by Takara became part of the Transformers line after being imported by Hasbro. It has been a business partnership between Hasbro and Takara ever since.

Who was the very first Transformer? Primus is the divine force of the Transformers, an ancient and ethereal being that dates back to the beginning of the universe, a force for good that exists across multiple realities, and infinite alternate universes. It was Prima who was the first Transformer created by Primus, and he would later lead Thirteen.

The Thirteen were the primary unique Cybertronians made by Primus to battle Unicron. They were each given the ranking of Prime. Simon Furman further invented the Transformers’ origin independently of Quintesson.

Quintessons are a race of creatures being driven off by Sentinel Prime. They are the manifestations of Quintus Prime and rule their realm from the planet Quintessa.

  1. Pre-1986

Tragically, the space shuttle Challenger disintegrated 73 seconds after launching, killing all seven astronauts on board. It has been suggested that those old enough to remember belong to Generation X (and are too old to be considered millennials). Would recollecting the 1986 Transformers feature also confirm that I am part of Generation X?

The animated Transformers feature film was released on the big screen in 1986. It was in North America on August 8. It was co-created by Nelson Shin, who additionally delivered the TV series.

The screenplay was composed by Ron Friedman, who made Bionic Six. 7.2/10 on IMDb, The Transformers: The Movie is a story that heroic Autobots safeguard the world from abhorrent Decepticons. Anger is raging between both factions, and that hatred has made them blind to a threat.

The Transformers: The Movie (1986) –
Theatrical Trailer

The Transformers: The Movie is actually the first Transformers movie, even though the live-action films get all the attention. The movie gained a cult following among genre fans despite being a box office bomb.

Compared with the TV series’ equivalent 90 minutes, the film’s budget was six times higher at $6 million.

  1. 1986 Film Underdog Autobots

In The Transformers: The Movie, after a Decepticon assault devastates Autobot City, Optimus Prime wins a deadly one-on-one duel with Megatron, but ultimately sustains fatal injuries in the encounter. It was Megatron’s correct calculation that the Decepticon crew would not set off the automated defences of Autobot City.


I’ve thought about how the story for The Transformers: The Movie fits a quest pattern. It could be viewed like this.

Initiation–The Decepticons have conquered Cybertron, the home planet of the Transformers, in what was a year in the future, 2005. Thundercracker, Skywarp, Shrapnel, Kickback, Bombshell, and Megatron are jettisoned to conserve fuel, by several Decepticons led by Starscream.

The injured Decepticons are found by Unicron, a conscious planet that consumes different universes. (One cinematic allusion to Star Wars.)


In exchange for the destruction of the Matrix–which Megatron knows can destroy him–Unicron offers him a new body. He tells him Ultra Magnus has it.

Instruction–On his deathbed, Optimus passes its power.

Journey– Retaking the Decepticons, Galvatron drives to search out Ultra Magnus at Autobot City.

Confrontation–The Autobots and Junkions fly to Cybertron. The Autobots crash their spaceship through Unicron’s eye and become disbanded. Dinobots, Decepticons, and Junkions continue to battle Unicron.

As Daniel safeguards his dad Spike from Unicron’s framework, the gathering salvages bee, Jazz, and Cliffjumper.

Conquest–During the battle, Galvatron acquires the high ground. Understanding this is Autobot’s breaking point, the work changes Rodimus Prime, the Autobot pioneer. He is an Autobot champion.

Return–Rodimus throws Galvatron into space to obliterate Unicron, then escapes with the other Autobots.

Transformation–With the Decepticons in chaos, the Autobots praise the conflict and the retaking of their home planet while Unicron’s cut-off head circles.

  1. Screenplay Resolution

During the conquest, Galvatron acquires high ground. (Remind you of Ewan McGregor’s dialogue in Revenge of the Sith?)

The Matrix, realizing this is the Autobots’ darkest hour, transforms Hot Rod into Rodimus Prime. According to Hot Rod’s tech specs, he is an Autobot Cavalier, while Rodimus Prime is an “Autobot Protector” – unlike Optimus Prime, “Autobot Commander”. While Unicron’s severed head orbits Cybertron, the Autobots celebrate the war’s end and the retaking of Cybertron from the Decepticons.

As a screenplay, I find the action and story adequate, and I also think the voice acting is notable. It mostly deserves the 7.2 it has on IMDb, although that score is possibly a little generous.

  1. Impact on pop culture

When Michael Bay made Transformers into a live-action feature, in 2007, I went on my own to the cinema, at the mall, to watch the film. I was glad to get a chance to enjoy it. Even those who don’t like the movie suggest the brand benefited from the film overall.

JoBlo on YouTube raises the question of how Megan Fox seems since she both made it in Hollywood as the leading actress in Transformers and since she met Machine Gun Kelly.

I agree that Michael Bay is a great action-film director, whatever criticism is levelled at him, and his first Transformers film shows it. Shia LaBeouf plays the leading role in the movie quite admirably, and Megan Fox is gorgeous and fun as the film’s leading actress. Bay had a $147 million budget in the US for the movie and the box office was $4.8 billion.

Sadly, notwithstanding posting Autobot-sized numbers that followed – Fallen ($836M), Moon ($1.12B), Eradication ($1.1B), The Last Knight ($605M) – the films tumbled off a precipice, and while he delighted in making them, he ought to tap out sooner.

Despite many calling the second movie the worst of the franchise, Reddit user chris95rx7500 claims it is still his favourite. Furthermore, “if you didn’t like the movie, the toy line made up for it.”

Will Spielberg receive another Academy Award in 2023?

Shia LaBeouf made his Hollywood breakthrough with Transformers after having starred in smaller projects. Fans of Transformers tend to view them as relatively disposable since there are so many movies. Originally, the sixth film in the flagship series and the seventh overall were set for release on June 9, 2023 – but that date remains.

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