I knew that, but I had no idea JUST how big loud and stupid Tran3 was going to be...they literally had characters screaming for 10 secs at a time. I think half the script was screaming...
See ... that's what I don't understand. At this point, how can anyone NOT know what to expect out of a Michael Bay film -- particularly a Bayformers film?
I think the other problem with GL (other than its mediocrity) is that the film looks like a comic book come to life. The whole point of a live-action film is to translate the comics into an entirely different aesthetic. And yet GL, with its combination of the suit & mask, the alien settings, the aliens themselves ... it looks like it ought to have been an animated film. In fact, had the film been presented as pure CGI (or traditional animation) I guarantee that, at the very least, the critical reception would be much more forgiving.
I didn't sense any pretention in GL at all. And I certainly don't see how Hal being a jock qualifies. The fear stuff might have been pushed a little hard, and may not have been completely believable coming from Reynolds, but it was all still fairly standard, comic booky stuff anyway (and not much different than all the cheesy "lessons" we heard in the Spidey movies).
To me, pretentious is the SW prequels, or Matrix sequels. GL doesn't even come CLOSE to that. It was just trying to be a fun little supehero movie.
Perhaps we're interpreting pretension differently, then. Which is certainly a possibility. But, to me, trying to portray Hal as a sympathetic, aw-shucks character while he's got this charmed life is the very definition of pretentiousness. Especially considering the film tries, HARD, to convey the thematic element of confronting and accepting one's fear. I think audiences and critics would be more open to such a theme if the main character wasn't a cocky, ladies-man test pilot. If you don't see it that way, that's cool. I don't think you're wrong. But I think my interpretation is, at least in part, why some reviewers reveled in criticizing the film.