Michael Bay has certainly earned his detractors over the years. Bay has ruffled a few feathers in the Geek community. I however do believe under the right script and subject matter Bay can deliver a good movie. The past few years he has been in a bit of a slump. “Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen” is an over long noisy mess and his latest entry, “Transformers: Age of Extinction” is just god awful. It’s hard to defend him with films like this in his filmography. Given all of that I do believe he has talent. “The Rock”, “Bad Boys”, and the first “Transformers” are all good films. I also still contend ” Armageddon” is the best bad movie of all time. I think the problem is he needs to get away from the “Transformers” franchise and go back to smaller more grounded films. Keep a creative mind in one spot too long and you’ll come up with a lack of ideas (and that’s what “Transformers 4” was).
“13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi” is the type of project I’ve been looking for from Bay. This smaller real life, story driven film. has gone under the radar from mostly everybody. I won’t sit here and say I love the trailer, but, there is plenty in there that makes me hopeful that this film will deliver where others of his films don’t.
This movie seems to have a gritty “Black Hawk Down” feel to it. There are some beautiful shots composed here by Bay (his signature style is on display here) . The most eye opening part of the trailer is John Krasinski. Krasinski is of course the long time cast member of the American version of “The Office” as Jim Helper. “The Office” is one of my favorite sitcoms and Krasinski was my favorite cast member. After a successful sitcom it’s hard to break away from the character and find success (just ask the cast members of “Friends”). Here though could be that breakout role for Krasinski. He doesn’t have a single line of dialogue in the trailer but he has the look and intensity down. I didn’t see Jim Helper, I saw a harden solider. (Anyone else notice Roy from “The Office” is also in this movie?)
The part that concerns me is the January release date. We all know January is the notorious dumping ground for studios when they don’t believe they have a winner on their hands. Given Bay’s track record with historical drama (“Pearl Harbor”) this does give me pause with concern. However what Paramount could be doing is going after the “American Sniper” crowd. Which of course did unheard of box office numbers in January of last year. Then again “American Sniper” (just like “Lone Survivor”) premiered at some small screenings in December because the studio thought it could be an awards contender as well. “13 Hours” is not getting that type of release.
The quality of the film is up in the air at this point . But, I do have some hope that this will be Bay’s answer to his critics and prove he is up to the task of crafting a good movie. It can’t get much worse than “Transformers 4” anyways…right?