It’s boys-and-toys time all over again with action addict Michael Bay’s fifth—and, mercifully, last—entry in the bewilderingly successful Hasbro franchise. Transformers: The Last Knight clocks in at 149 minutes, most of them every bit as painful, childish, ’roid-raged and pointlessly bombastic as the last four movies would lead you to expect. But hey, you know what you’re getting here, right? A massive, bloated VFX fest that exists only to string together action sequences and to sell more toys.

We kind of resent having to relate anything about the plot of this latest exercise in Bayhem, because we’re pretty sure that none of the highly paid writers, including Oscar winner Akiva Goldsman (A Beautiful Mind, Cinderella Man), could do it even if they were cornered. It’s got something to do with the U.S. government wanting to rid the planet of Transformers while the Transformers’ home planet, Cybertron, is set to disintegrate and collide with earth, unleashing untold damage. Why do the Transformers keep coming to earth, where they’re faced with such hostility? That’s one of the questions the ADD-addled movie seeks to answer.

Mark Wahlberg scowls, runs and rolls a lot as a self-proclaimed “inventor” (with the ludicrous Hollywood name Cade Yeager) who lives in secret in a junkyard near an Indian reservation and must confine himself to brief, one-way phone conversations with his daughter to protect her from harm. See, he’s got a price on his head because of his loyalty to Optimus Prime (voiced by Peter Cullen) and other earth-protecting Autobots who oppose the earth-destroying Decepticons. Meanwhile, among the elite squad of soldiers leading the war against the latter is Col. William Lennox (Josh Duhamel, who apparently will never be given anything cool to do in these movies). Yeager comes into possession of a certain Important Object from the days of King Arthur, and that brings him into the orbit of an eccentric historian named Sir Edmund Burton (Anthony Hopkins, playing delightfully to the third balcony), who lives in a castle and has ancestral ties to the Knights of the Round Table and all that sort of rot.

Also key to the adventures is irreverent Oxford professor and horsewoman Vivian Wembley (Laura Haddock, looking like a cross between Angelina Jolie and Megan Fox), who trades snappy quips with Yeager and provides a love interest in a movie that has zero comprehension of adult human behavior or emotions. Hopkins, who must have enjoyed one hell of a payday and who at least seems to be amusing himself, is mostly on hand to deliver exposition about how Yeager is “the last knight” and how Vivian is the only living person who can retrieve the film’s McGuffin—the fabled staff of the phony, drunken magician Merlin (Stanley Tucci)—before the earth is destroyed.

Mostly, Bay keeps throwing action sequences, sounds, transforming automobiles and debris at us in the vain hope we won’t notice that absolutely nothing we’re watching makes a lick of sense. This thing is such a mess that it almost makes Tom Cruise’s Mummy fumble seem like a model of cohesive storytelling. Almost. If these two aren’t the worst movies of the year, we’re in serious trouble.

Transformers: The Last Knight

For a radically different take on the man behind the Transformers saga, read ‘Michael Bay is a Genius.’