Don’t let the people-shaped objects on the posters fool you: The real stars of Michael Bay’s films are explosions, the things that explode and that string of lights that Bay puts on trees.
As Transformers: Age of Extinction cranks up the Bayhem way past 11, here’s a look back at the director’s craziest action scenes.
1. ‘The Rock’ (1996): Humvee: 1, Trolley Car: 0
Bay’s last good movie – and arguably his best – showcases an excessive car chase that grinds the plot to a halt so Bay can have ample time to shake his camera and attack the streets of San Francisco with the help of Sean “I only borrowed your Humvee” Connery, said Humvee and one unfortunate trolley.
2. ‘Armageddon’ (1998): Russian Space Station Goes All Explode-y
Before Bruce Willis and his team of oil drillers-turned-astronauts land on a rogue asteroid heading for Earth, they must first refuel at a Russian space station. Cue the yelling and exploding, and the spinning camera.
3. ‘Bad Boys II’ (2003): The Fresh Prince and Big Mamma’s House Vs. Cuba
In this sequel’s action-packed climax, Will Smith and Martin Lawrence invade Cuba. This sequence marks the end of Bay’s relationship with the concept of “restraint.”
4. ‘Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen’ (2009): Deforestation, Bay-Style!
While the Egypt climax is all over the place, and fantastically stupid in execution, Fallen scores most of its crazy points during this epic forest-set brawl between Optimus Prime and Megatron’s Decepticons. The only thing more ridiculous than the action is Bay’s afterthought-like treatment of Prime’s “death.”
5. ‘Transformers: Dark of the Moon’ (2011): Chicagolypse Now!
The Windy City gets its ass kicked for the better part of an hour by Decepticons, alien airships and metal snake-worms. Bay loved to hate Chicago so much, he decided to kill it again in Age of Extinction.