Michael Bay movies? Fairly ridiculous, all. But one of the great things about them is that he’s not afraid to go all the way, to literally throw a marathon full of wheelchair men at you during a high-speed car chase sequence (as he does at the end of this scene). He’s laughing, you’re laughing, we’re all laughing. But there’s also the rest of this chase, a one-up on Bullitt, the ne plus ultra of San Francisco car chases. There’s something comically masculine in the choice of cars — a brute force Hummer (driven by the original James Bond) and a ostentatiously speedy Ferrari (driven by Nic Cage, whose character name, seriously, is Dr. Stanley Goodspeed). But it’s the moment when the Hummer plows into and obliterates a peace-sign painted Volkswagon Beetle, the ultimate Bay Area stereotype, that Bay has fully played his hand. He knows these scenes, no matter how seriously played, are supposed to be fun and silly, so why not use a giant flaming gas plume to blow up a San Francisco streetcar piloted by a near-offensive capped black driver? Throw in that iconic Michael Bay low-angle, semi-circle camera spin around the badass main character (at the five-minute mark), and you’ve got yourself the perfect, if perhaps unintentional, chase scene satire.
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