It’s hard to believe it was thirty years ago when I saw The Transformers: The Movie at one of the many Jerry Lewis theaters that were around back then. From being a kid seeing Transformers on the big screen, to the surprise of hearing swearing in an animated movie, and of course the awesome 80’s soundtrack, this film holds some very special memories for me and my friends. After being released on VHS quite some time ago, then DVD, then another DVD release Sony did for the 20th anniversary, we come to the best release of them all with Shout Factory’s The Transformers: The Movie 30th Anniversary Edition Blu-ray. Featuring a remastered and touched up look along with some sweet special features, you’ll want to transform and roll out to pick this one up.
Taking in place in the future of 2005 (wait, didn’t that come and go already?) and some years after the original series ended, Optimus Prime (Peter Cullen) is still leading the fight with his Autobot allies against Megatron (Frank Welker) and his Decepticons to keep Earth safe while also getting their home planet of Cybertron back on track. But just when it things look their darkest, a new threat appears in the form of the planet sized and planet eating Unicron (the final performance of the late and great Orson Welles of Citizen Kane fame) who has his sights set on Earth and Cybertron. It’s up to the Autobots and their search for who can use the Matrix of Leadership, as it is the only power that stop Unicron. But with struggles on both their side and on the Decepticons, it may take both factions to put aside their differences and fight together or perish in oblivion.
Even after thirty years and multiple upon multiple viewings, this movie still holds up and remains one of the best animated features I’ve seen. Sure it has its fair share of cheese and weirdness (Monty Python’s Eric Idle as Wreck-Gar and his theme music of “Dare to Be Stupid” by Weird Al Yankovic comes to mind…) but it’s still a fun time that can be had and viewed by anyone. The all-star cast is spot on with their roles, with Welles’ Unicron being one of my all-time favorite voices ever as it paved the way (along with David Warner’s Master Control voice from 1982’s Tron) for future ominous voices of giant villains. The best thing about this new release is the way it has been retouched and remastered from a 4K source. The film looks absolutely stunning as you can see the painstaking details of love Shout Factory put into making the colors and details stand out, making for a version that didn’t look this good even when it was first released. To top it all off, seeing this for the first time in high definition is another awesome bonus as the Blu-ray looks and sounds amazing.
Speaking of bonuses, the new extras included on here are some of the best a die-hard Transformers fan could ask for, starting with audio commentary with director Nelson Shin, Story Consultant Flint Dille and voice actress Susan Blu as they discuss their memories working on the movie and go behind some of the making of it. One of the best extras here is “‘Til All Are One” that has some of the cast and crew along with our buddy singer/songwriter Stan Bush and even composer Vince DiCola as they share their stories on how it was working on the movie and how it become a worldwide phenomenon. There’s also some neat featurettes on how the film was lovingly restored, some that go over the pivotal parts of the movie, animated storyboards, and the original theatrical trailers and TV commercials round out the features.
Not only is The Transformers: The Movie 30th Anniversary Edition Blu-ray one of the best movies you can watch right now, it is also one of the best produced ones as well. A solid, action-packed film filled with fun coupled with an all-new high definition look that was made with care, along with some of the best special features a Transformers fan could ask for make this a must-have for any fan or those looking to Transform and join the revolution.