IMDb Polls

Poll: The Problem with Michael Bay

Michael Bay is an American filmmaker known for his big-budget action films which are largely characterized by fast cutting, stylistic visuals and his extensive use of special effects, including frequent depictions of explosions. Despite his immense box office success, however, the lion's share of his work has not sat well with critics, with many criticizing the quality, or rather the lack thereof.

Which common criticism of Michael Bay's movies do you agree with the most?

After voting, you may discuss the poll here.

Make Your Choice

  1. Vote!

    Ben Affleck in Pearl Harbor (2001)

    Too much patriotism.

    Known for their über-patriotism and an over reliance on patriotism as a theme, his movies flaunt it to the point where many are left thinking “Okay, we get it!” Almost all of his films contain the American military in some form or another, with rather controversial depictions at times. Fun fact: There are supposedly 53 flags in Transformers: Age of Extinction (2014) alone, with an average of one appearing every 3 minutes of runtime. Wow.

  2. Vote!

    Noel Fisher, Jeremy Howard, Johnny Knoxville, and Alan Ritchson in Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (2014)

    He ruined Transformers AND Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.

    The Transformers and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles were two staples in the homes of many kids growing up in the 80, 90s and even the 2000s. They were beloved doses of nostalgia for those kids, but now leave a sour taste in our mouth when we think about their awful live-action adaptations thanks to none other than one Michael Bay.

  3. Vote!

    Megan Fox in Transformers (2007)

    Objectifies anyone female in his movies.

    This is a big one in his films, with the usage of his female characters akin to his excessive product placement; using them as objects with virtually no other purpose. His portrayals of his female characters can be deemed stereotypical at best and extremely sexist at worst.

  4. Vote!

    John Turturro and Shia LaBeouf in Transformers: Dark of the Moon (2011)

    So. Much. Darn. Product. Placement.

    His movies push product placement like a grocery clerk pushing a shopping cart. And the worst of it all is that he doesn't even try to make their placement subtle. Another fun fact: There are supposedly 55 product placements in Transformers: Age of Extinction (2014) alone; honestly, what is it with this movie?!

  5. Vote!

    Robert Foxworth in Transformers (2007)

    Comedy that isn't at all comedic.

    The humour in his films are often dumbed-down to the point where even kids watching it would find it ridiculous. Combine the occasional stereotypical elements associated with the ostensibly "funny" aspects of his films and you're left with an audience who just disdain, rather than laugh at, the subject matter presented to them.

  6. Vote!

    Tony Shalhoub in Pain & Gain (2013)

    Shallower than a kiddie pool.

    Look, no one is expecting an Ingmar Bergman masterpiece going into any of his films (even mentioning the two in the same sentence hurts...), but it would be nice to have some type of provoking subject matter, really any at all, in his films. Instead, we are served utterly dense, meaningless plots with characters we couldn't care less about.

  7. Vote!

    Peter Cullen and Frank Welker in Transformers: Age of Extinction (2014)

    Emphasizes action over story.

    Similar to the previous option, but his stories overly emphasize action to the point where we're not really sure what is going on, nor do we care; 1000 explosions doesn't make up for one interesting character and Bay seems to neglect this completely. Action without substance is numb and redundant, and his movies are like a frozen brick in that regard.

  8. Vote!

    Bernie Mac, Kevin Dunn, and Shia LaBeouf in Transformers (2007)

    The racial stereotypes.

    If anything can be considered worse than his objectification of women (and that's a big if), it would be his portrayal of race, which is often highly offensive and even some of his transformers characters, most notably Mudflap and Skids are considered some of the most racist caricatures ever post on screen. That's bad.

  9. Vote!

    Bruce Willis in Armageddon (1998)

    Annoyingly clichéd camerawork.

    If there's anything more irksome than his cringe-worthy characters, his generalizations about people or his complete lack of plot, it's the cliché camerawork of his films, with many 'pivotal' shots just being borrowed from his other films. Whereas other directors will use considerable care for each and every shot, Bay's camera movements have become meaningless and downright repetitive.

  10. Vote!

    Michael Bay and Megan Fox

    His terrible movies are box-office smashes.

    Fact 1: Michael Bay has never, ever lost money from a movie he directed. Fact 2: His films have grossed over US$5 billion worldwide, including Transformers: Age of Extinction (2014) which made over $1billion worldwide. These facts show that, despite the hatred shared between the general public and critics alike, he will continue to make these poor quality movies for one reason: $$$.

  11. Vote!

    Michael Bay at an event for Transformers (2007)

    I actually like Michael Bay's movies, thank you very much.

    I am not bothered by any of the above criticisms, and think he makes adequate, if not wonderful, movies. I might even go as far to say that he is one of the better contemporary directors of our time; or maybe I don't agree with many of the aforementioned complaints of his films.

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