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Mario Bautista, has been with the entertainment industry for more than 4 decades. He writes regular columns for People's Journal and Malaya.

Sep 29, 2020



MEGAN FOX got her big break playing the female lead in the live action film version of “Transformers” in 2007 and its sequel in 2009. 

We thought she’s gonna hit it really big as she’s so sexy and charismatic. She should have been in the 3rd installment of “Transformers” but she was fired when she tactlessly compared their director Michael Bay to Hitler. 

Sadly, her career didn’t really soar and she starred in lackluster films like “Jonah Hex”, “Passion Play” and “Above the Shadows”. She now does an action role in “Rogue” as a mercenary, like Charlize Theron in “The Old Guard”. 

Directed and co-written by transwoman filmmaker M.J. Bassett (“Solomon Kane”, “Altered Carbon”), it starts in a campsite in Africa where greedy poachers are ferociously attacked by the wild animals under their care.  We couldn’t help but say: “Buti nga sa kanila!”

Then the action shifts to a crack team of mercenaries led by Samantha O’Hara (Megan Fox) making a daring attempt to rescue an abducted young girl, the daughter of a governor (Jessica Sutton), from a gang of heavily-armed human traffickers. 

The plot is exactly like Chris Hemsworth’s “Extraction”, which undoubtedly has a much bigger budget. 

Megan and friends end up fighting not just the murderous bad guys who are pursuing them but also a huge crocodile and a rogue female lion who is looking for her lost cubs. 

They face insurmountable obstacles with ammunition running low, other kidnapped girls joining them for protection and her people being killed one by one, but O’Hara is super determined to complete her mission, even if they all have to lay down their lives along the way. 

The movie may have a more relevant social message about the conservation of wild life and inhumane treatment of animals, but it gets lost amidst all the chase scenes, explosions and flying bullets all around as it’s designed more as an action-horror flick than anything else. 

In fairness to Megan Fox, she brings a lot more emotional heft to her portrayal of the embattled, hardened warrior than one would expect for someone who got famous as eye candy shown washing a car scantily clad and with such sexily seductive moves in “Transformers 1”. 

We have to admit she’s no Charlize. But she could have just gone through the motions to pick up her paycheck, but instead, she took her role quite seriously and we do get to root for her. 

The climactic scene where she locked her self up along with the main villain and the lion inside a barn in the lion farm is beautifully choreographed and you’d really root for the lion even if she looks like she’s CGI digital. 

The supporting players are mostly unknowns but they fit their character types as a gang of mercenaries hellbent on protecting their wards and avoiding being killed. All in all, it’s fairly watchable as an action-thriller, but certainly fails in comparison to is bigger forerunners like “Extraction” and “Old Guard”.