YMMV / Michael Bay


  • Award Snub: Six of his nine movies have been nominated for a combination of 16 Oscars, yet they have won only one award.
  • Critical Dissonance:
    • Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen illustrates this best: it made over $836 million in theaters, while critics raged about how atrocious it was, resulting in Razzies for Worst Picture, Screenplay, and Director.
    • Dark of the Moon might even more so, since it also received a considerable amount of hate, and is now the twelfth-highest-grossing film of all time.
    • Michael Bay could be the poster boy for this trope, with almost all his films getting mixed reviews at best, but still smash hits at the box office. The only real exceptions, being financially and critically successful, are The Rock, and that's likely due to Rule of Sean Connery, and to a lesser extent, the first Transformers film.
  • Crowning Moment of Heartwarming: When Bay heard about Freya, an epileptic dog nicknamed "World's lonelinest dog" who has been passed up for adoption over 18720 times during her 6 year life, he promised to give her a role in Transformers: The Last Knight and find her a permanent home. He managed to fill both promises.
  • Ethnic Scrappy: He has been accused of using at least one per movie.
  • Fan Hater:
    • If you like his films, get ready to be accused of being a redneck or having ADHD.note 
    • Critics have openly attacked the intelligence of fans for making Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen a success despite their reviews.
    • He's also said that he doesn't make movies the critics want to see. He openly admits that his movies are meant to be popcorn fun. This is a Berserk Button for three groups of people: professional critics, amateur critics, and people who extremely value the views of critics. To some observers, the very idea that a director would intentionally make a movie solely for "entertainment" instead of "art" is seen as pissing right in their Wheatiesnote . Though the fact his films are perennial Oscar contenders means his peers recognize to some degree what he has done.
    • 13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi is by far his most politicized and thus polarizing work to date due to being released in an election year and does not paint a flattering portrait of a presidential candidate. Just the trailer alone sent progressive media outlets into a frenzy. Then most of them chilled down when 13 Hours got both mixed reviews and a poor box-office draw.
  • Growing the Beard: While The Island wasn't the hit people expected, it was praised for having a much more involving storyline than what usually appears in his films. Yet the film failed to make money. His next film was Transformers.
  • Memetic Badass: "You mess with Michael Bay and you mess with America!"
  • Memetic Mutation: It's hard to mention Michael Bay's name but not explosions within the same sentence. Especially using the term "Michael Baysplosions".
  • Mis-blamed:
    • Although not entirely blameless for the film's problems, Bay did not put the Romantic Plot Tumor into Pearl Harbor. That was screenwriter Randall Wallace's fault.
    • He swears Executive Meddling was what tried to turn it into another Titanic.
    • One review of Alone in the Dark described a confusing shot, and the reviewer actually wrote, "Michael Bay has a lot to answer for." Blaming Bay for a Uwe Boll movie's problems.
    • Believe it or not, but there are certain fans that blame Michael Bay for the different robot designs used in the Transformers movies as if he personally drew them up himself. Never mind the fact that EVERY different Transformers series features a new style.
    • The Hatedom is so strong for some people that they're willing to write off any movie that Bay is involved in producing as being horrible before it even comes out. Never mind that it's his production company that's been producing the horror movie reboots (Chainsaw, Elm Street, Friday the 13th (2009)), but he's not the sole producer.
    • He tends to receive all of the scorn of the fan base for Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (2014) despite simply being a producer for the film. In a somewhat ironic turn, it turns out that Bay is actually responsible for nixing a lot of bad ideas that others wanted to put in, since he's now fairly aware of how a fanbase will react to changes. But, due to being who he is, he ends up being blamed for a lot of the ideas he was responsible for nixing. Essentially, a lot of the people cursing his name should be thanking him for doing what they wanted!
    • Even TFWiki.net notes this, as Ehren Kruger's page has "Quietly writing scripts while his explosive director gets all the blame." written in the main image's caption.
    • It has in fact become so common to blame Michael Bay for any less-than-cerebral action film, especially those that are adaptations of old cartoon franchises, that there are some who blame him for the GI Joe live action movies... a franchise he had nothing to do with.
  • Never Live It Down:
    • Explosions in Michael Bay movies are so common that the first thing people do when they parody him is to put explosions everywhere. One such example.
    • Due to its infamous Critic-Proof status, Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen is always used as a point of reference for Bay's directing style, despite the fact that he's directed much better movies such as The Rock.
  • No Such Thing as Bad Publicity: The way people describe his movies, you'd think they were the worst things ever made. You wouldn't know this by looking at the sales figures for the Transformers films.
  • Visual Effects of Awesome: Every film he has made with extensive visual effects has been praised for the level of detail and pushing the prior boundaries, even if the film as a whole may have been flawed. Even George Lucas admitted he drew inspiration for the opening sequence of Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith from Pearl Harbor.

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