Transformers have existed nearly 30 years, providing us with cartoons, comics and toys. The Transformers began with the 1980’s Japanese toy lines Microman and Diaclone. Hasbro bought the Diaclone toy line and partnered with Takara Tomy to produce and distribute Transformers. Transformers went through a period of low popularity in the early 2000’s, but were brought to the forefront of action entertainment with Michael Bay’s live action Transformers movie franchise. After the first live action movie was released, Transformers became more popular than ever. With this new popularity, the older Generation One toys have increased in value.
1984 Transformers Jetfire by Hasbro
What it is:
The Transformer known as Jetfire is an airplane that transforms into a robot. Jetfire, as a character, is known for his intellect and dedication to science. He is compassionate and believes he’s the smartest among his fellow Autobots. He is an Autobot, a good guy, but started out as a Decepticon and friends with the evil Starscream. The other Autobots don’t always trust him, because he can be cold and calculating. Here is an interesting side note: this particular toy was also made for Takatoku Toys and sold as the VF-1 Valkyrie. The VF-1 was a fictional mech/fighter jet in a popular Japanese Anime series named “The Super Dimension Fortress Macross”, also known as “Robotech” in the US. You can read more about it here.
“ I don’t believe in destiny ”
How Much it Costs:
The price can vary quite a bit depending on the version for which you are looking. If you are going for “vintage”, like the one in the video, prices can range from $40-$4000. If you are looking for the 1984/85 Jetfire to just play with for fun, I have seen a few Jetfires without the box and missing accessories going for $40-80 on eBay. If you are looking for a mint condition Jetfire sealed, graded by an appraiser, and for display only those are the ones that sell for thousands. There are newer versions and you can go today to Toys R Us to purchase Jetfire for about $40.
Is It Worth It?:
I love the original Generation One Transformers, like this Jetfire. The Generation One Transformers were made of substantial materials and stand up well over time. As you can see from the video, for a 30-year-old toy, it still looks pretty good! It’s cool looking and fun to play with. Unfortunately, it’s a rare 30-year-old toy and I’m so afraid of breaking it. The newer version looks similar; Jetfire is still a plane, but a more modern design. I also believe the newer Transformers I’ve played with were designed better. Even though the new ones are more sophisticated, they are made out of cheaper materials. The 1984 toy is worth owning, but if you want one to play with, I highly recommend just buying the 2014 version. The vintage one makes a pretty awesome display piece that you can look at and play with gently.
May was full of comic book movies, but June is about to get the summer poppin’ with a variety of family and comedy films. There are some pretty cool independent films out, too. Here’s the skinny on this upcoming months’ movies:
June 6 – Edge of Tomorrow
Starring: Tom Cruise, Emily Blunt
Another year, another Tom Cruise action flick. It’s not that I don’t think he does a poor job at being an action star, but every idea he’s in feels completely recycled. Even though the premise of the film is nothing like Oblivion, the ambiance of the films feel exactly the same, and there is absolutely nothing to convince me there is something new and exciting to see here. Actually, the plot reminds me of 2011’s Source Code; in Edge of Tomorrow, Tom Cruise is forced to repeat the same day of war against the Mimic aliens over and over again, trying to find the point in all of it. The film is borrowed from the Japanese novel All You Need is Kill. It’s a really cool concept, and looks worth seeing if you like the genre. – Sherif
June 6 – The Fault in Our Stars
Starring: Shailene Woodley, Ansel Elgort
“Hazel Grace Lancaster (Shailene Woodley) is an atypical teenager living with cancer, oxygen tank trailing forever behind her. While medication and frequent doctors visits have extended her life quite a bit, she is very much aware that she is dying. After being deemed depressed by both her mother and doctor, Hazel begins attending a cancer support group. It is here that she meets Augustus Waters (Ansel Elgort), a charismatic, sly, metaphoric loving cancer survivor determined to make his mark on the world. Together they find “a forever within the numbered days,” a love that transcends their illness, and an adventure that makes them both feel infinitely alive whilst on the border of death.” – Charlotte (an excerpt from her full spoiler-free review here)
June 13 – How to Train Your Dragon 2
Starring: Jay Baruchel, Cate Blanchett, Gerard Butler, Djimon Hounsou, Craig Ferguson, Jonah Hill, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, Kristen Wiig
How To Train Your Dragon was an incredibly well done movie about a boy that brings peace to his viking village and the dragons who inhabit the area. There’s several different dragon types shown in the movie (and even more are presented in the TV show spin off, The Riders of Burk). However, the spotlight shines brightest on Hiccup and his Night Fury Dragon named Toothless.The pair make an amazing team, ending a war and saving lifes, all while Hiccup learns to accept himself and discover his unique calling in life. The first movie is phenomenal, and a must see, full of moments that will make you laugh, cry, and leave you on the edge of your seat. The second movie introduced a character previously alluded to be dead, Hiccup’s mom (can’t wait to hear that explanation); it turns out that dragon training is in his blood. This reunion comes just in time as an enemy force, composed of more dragon-riding vikings, threatens to strip Hiccup and his friends of their beloved dragons. The trailers give me high hopes that this sequel can be held to the same standards as the first. The imagery is stunning (makes me sad I don’t have a dragon of my own) and there appears to be more of the same adorable dragon humor as the original. I look forward to seeing all the new dragon types and Hiccup all grown up. – Sara
June 13 – 22 Jump Street
Starring: Jonah Hill, Channing Tatum, Ice Cube
Ever since the first modern 21 Jump Street, starring Channing Tatum and Jonah Hill, I have loved seeing this combo on the big screen. And now that the sequel is being released, I am absolutely excited. This movie better hold up to my expectations because if it doesn’t, I might just have to go back to either high school or college and start selling drugs, and they don’t want that. In this action-packed comedy the police duo are stepping out of the little leagues and heading into the majors as they tackle college. That’s right! The big give-me-a-C-O-L-L-E-G-E, and what does that spell? It spells nothing but chaos and comedy rolled into one movie. With returning characters such as Captain Dickson, played by Ice Cube, Deputy Chief Hardy, played by Nick Offerman, and Mr. Walters, played by Rob Riggle, I believe that this will be a great movie. And if you go see this movie for anything, anything at all, you must go see it to see Channing Tatum’s flawless Hispanic accent. And I do mean flawless. So go see this movie. It will be amazing; it will be your worst…I mean best nightmare (see what I did there?). – Evan
June 20 – The Rover
Starring: Guy Pearce, Robert Pattinson
A huge economic collapse happened 10 years ago in the West and now all hell breaks loose in the new drama, The Rover. This film takes place in Australia where we meet Eric (Guy Pearce), a man whom, after the collapse, has nothing left but one possession and a gang breaks in and steals it and in the process of them trying to get away one of the gang members is injured and left behind for dead. The gang member, Rey (Robert Pattinson), teams up with Eric to catch the gang since they left him for dead. The film seems like a good drama but it also seems like a movie that may not hit certain audiences too well. It seems like a lot of the post apocalyptic sort of drama action films like Children of Men, I Am Legend, and Book of Eli. I tend to like this genre and I will not pass any Twilight hate onto Robert Pattinson and not see the film which may end up being a performance that shows he is more than just sparkly Edward to a lot of people. If you like intense dramas definitely check this out as well as if you enjoy the end of the world with no zombies but lots of action and thrills type of film. – Jacob
June 20 – Coherence
Starring: NIcholas Brendon, Elizabeth Gracen
Honestly, the plot of Coherence is a little befuddling. However, that won’t stop me from seeing it. Coherence takes place in one night at a dinner party of eight close friends. When a comet passes Earth, weird stuff starts to happen, and the friends find out about each other, them selves, and their relationships. Every review has touted it as being incredibly well written and acted. I will go see it purely off the cast, though. Elizabeth Gracen, who played Amanda in The Highlander TV series is a seller. But the winner is to Nicholas Brendon, who played Xander Harris on Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Not only have his roles since Buffy ended been sparse, but this role doesn’t make him seem like the “nerd” he has so often portrayed. I am excited to see him break out of his typecast shell and explore other roles. -Adrian
June 27 – Transformers: Age of Extinction
Starring: Mark Wahlberg, Stanley Tucci
Say what you will about Michael Bay, but he has made some damn good Transformers movies. The fourth installment, Age of Extinction, finally lets go of the formerly famous Shia LaBeouf and choosing a more adept action hero. Marky Mark himself takes the reigns on this one; giant robots are already the fail-safe summer blockbuster, but now that Mark Wahlberg is starring instead of LaBeouf, I’m much more interested in seeing it. Since Dark of the Moon pretty much wrapped up the trilogy with Optimus Prime pretty much going Sub-Zero on Megtron, I’m not too sure where Age of Extinction is going, but it almost looks to be LEGO Movie type of thing going on, inspiring kids to pick up their Robots in Disguise one more time. The world has recovered from the Decepticons’ attack and the Transformers have officially been rendered obsolete. Somewhere along the line, the stupid, puny humans reactivate the Decepticons and create DINOBOTS! Don’t expect this to blow you away, but it’s a necessary summer action movie carried by a vetted action hero. Plus, DINOBOTS! – Sherif
June 27 – WHITEY: United States of America v. James J. Bulger
Okay, I admit it. I’m a total sucker for crime documentaries; there’s just something alluring about organized crime that I love watching stories about. That being said, James Bulger’s story is straight-up frightening. There is nothing entertaining about mass murder and dealing; Bulger reign in Boston ranks up there with some of the most gruesome. It also opens up eyes in the way that he was able to stay out of prison. He had the FBI on pay-roll for decades. He was just convicted in 2011, at 81 years old. Bulger is such a bad man that he was used as the inspiration for Jack Nicholson’s Frank Costello in The Departed, as well as Showtime’s Brotherhood, and an upcoming film titled Black Mass starring Johnny Depp. This won’t be for the faint of heart, or for people who are bored by the genre, but it will make for a captivating and horrifying documentary about one of America’s most notorious gangsters. – Sherif