Key strong points:
- Good voices and characterization on the Autobots. Similarly the Decepticons managed to be pretty dang menacing, although they didn't show as much personality.
- The love interest was quite competent and on the whole more interesting than the male lead.
- The movie put great emphasis on humor, and not just action movie one liners.
- Fun military porn. Since I now study some of this stuff for a living I enjoyed having a better feel for the various systems they used.
- My main complaint is the main thing I was worried about going in. The transformers robot forms are too dang complex. You don't get a feel for what's changing when they transform. Perhaps more important, it isn't always clear exactly what's going on in the fight scenes near the end, which are quite busy. Should have been done by making the robot forms out of fewer blockier pieces. Also, this makes for better marketing of the toys.
- The Pentagon plot-line was basically pointless. I'm guessing they cut some scenes there. But they could have reduced it by another 75% without hurting the movie at all.
Thanks again for the ticket lilinthra.