Lining up the popcorn bags: Transformers and Obvious Child

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Russ Simmons and Shawn Edwards watched Transformers and Obvious Child in The FOX 4 Screening Room with their critical eyes and ears.

How many popcorn bags? Their answers were different on both.

1) TRANSFORMERS: THE AGE OF EXTINCTION (PG-13)

“Transformers: Age of Extinction” may well become the biggest box office hit of the season. It may also be the most overblown, over-produced and overlong movie of the season.

The $165 million budget allowed director Michael Bay to splash the screen with all the extravagant 3-D spectacle his computer generated imaging team could muster. While individual scenes are impressive, Bay has no idea of how to build momentum within a story arc, so the sensational special effects devolve into mind-numbing mayhem after about 20 minutes of action. Since the movie is 2 ½ hours long, that’s an awful lot of numbing.

Mark Wahlberg, Stanley Tucci and Kelsey Grammer do what they can with the insipid script they’ve been given. But, who cares about a script? The reason we go to a Transformers movie is to see the cool robots wreak massive destruction. On that count, at least, it delivers.

If you’re idea of entertainment is watching a Toys Are Us explode, then “Transformers: The Age of Extinction” may be the movie for you.

Shawn calls it, "Explosive and loud the way it should be. Mark Wahlberg is a solid addition. Sure it's dumb but the most exciting of the summer."

RUSS: 2 Popcorn Bags
SHAWN: 3 Popcorn Bags

2) OBVIOUS CHILD (R)

The makers of the independent film “Obvious Child” reportedly don’t want it to be described as an “abortion comedy.” But, in fact, that’s exactly what it is.

Former “Saturday Night Live” cast member Jenny Slate plays a struggling standup comic who gets dumped by her insensitive boyfriend. On the rebound, she has a one-night-stand with a nice young man and, voila, she’s preggers. What’s a girl to do?

Except for its vulgar language, “Obvious Child” is a pretty conventional romantic comedy that is so featherweight that it nearly blows right off the screen. Slate, however, gives a very engaging and credible performance that holds it all together. Slate’s edgy affability is the obvious attraction of “Obvious Child.”

Shawn calls it, "Quirky and interesting."

RUSS: 2 Popcorn Bags
SHAWN: 4 Popcorn Bags

Remember, you can see all of our reviews and interviews with Hollywood's biggest stars at fox4kc.com/screeningroom. While you're there, you can enter to win passes to see "Dawn of the Planet of the Apes." Until next time, I'm Russ Simmons, Fox 4 News, in the Screening Room.

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