In the 1980s, Hasbro’s mega-popular Transformers toy line spawned an animated series, an animated movie, and a run in Marvel comics. The saga continued throughout the ’90s and ’00s with new cartoons, but it wasn’t until 2007 that these robots in disguise got the live-action film treatment.
Michael Bay’s live-action Transformers movie took audiences by storm, showcasing top-of-the-line special effects and thrilling action. And in the years since this blockbuster, the franchise has unleashed five more live-action movies — with its next installment, Transformers: Rise of the Beasts, slated for June 9, 2023.
So, in what order do these films appear? Let’s dive in
You can choose to watch the transformers Movies in either of the following orders:
- Chronological Order
- Release Order
1. Transformers Live-Action Films in Release Order
- Transformers: (2007)
- Transformers: Revenge Of The Fallen (2009)
- Transformers: Dark Of The Moon (2011)
- Transformers: Age Of Extinction (2014)
- Transformers: The Last Knight (2017)
- Bumblebee (2018)
- Transformers: Rise of the Beasts (2023)
- Transformers: A New Generation (2024 – upcoming)
2. Transformers Live-Action Films In Chronological Order
- Bumblebee (2018)
The first movie, chronologically, is 2018’s prequel Bumblebee. Starring Hailee Steinfeld as Charlie, it’s about a teen mourning her father’s death who discovers an Autobot, Bumblebee, hiding on Earth.
Even though the film was eventually declared as a reboot of the franchise, it still takes place before everything else, back in 1987.
- Transformers: Rise of the Beasts (2023)
Billed as a sequel/follow-up to Bumblebee (again, if we’re treating this all as a rebooted timeline), Transformers: Rise of the Beasts is said to take place in 1994. It involves a pair of archaeologists from Brooklyn who become a part of an ancient conflict through an adventure that ties in with three factions of Transformers: The Maximals, the Predacons, and the Terrorcons.
Rise of the Beasts will be the first Transformers live-action movie inspired by the Beast Wars cartoon. Anthony Ramos and Dominique Fishback are set to star, with Peter Cullen voicing Optimus Prime and Ron Perlman voicing Optimus Primal.
- Transformers (2007)
The massive movie that started it all. Michael Bay’s Transformers brought the Autobots vs. Decepticons war to Earth in a wicked way, putting Shia LaBeouf’s Sam, Megan Fox’s Mikaela, and the U.S. Armed Forces in the middle of an ancient galactic conflict that traces back to the Transformers’ home planet Cybertron.
For the first time, Transformers fans saw Optimus Prime, Bumblebee, Jazz, Megatron, Starscream, and more, interact with human and battle through real explosions.
- Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen (2009)
The franchise’s first sequel, Revenge of the Fallen, brought back the previous cast while introducing Tony Todd as The Fallen, Megatron’s master and founder of the Decepticons.
Autobots work with secret military organizations and try to make a home for themselves on Earth. On the other hand, The Fallen returns to wreak havoc, calling on the Constructicons to combine and form a gigantic foe, Devastator.
- Transformers: Dark of the Moon (2011)
Megan Fox was out, and Rosie Huntington-Whiteley was in as Shia LeBeouf’s new girlfriend in Michael Bay’s third Transformers flick, Dark of the Moon. It operated under the premise that America’s space program was developed to investigate a crash on the moon — the site of a downed spacecraft called the Ark, from Cybertron.
A new evil plot involving Decepticons and the previous Autobot leader, Sentinel Prime, is hatched. It’s up to Optimus Prime and his team to save the day and stop Cybertron itself from passing through a wormhole into our solar system.
- Transformers: Age of Extinction (2014)
Mark Wahlberg joined the Transformers franchise in Age of Extinction as Cade Yeager, a father, and struggling inventor, swept up in the latest feud between Autobots and Decepticons. Dinobots and a reincarnation of Megatron were introduced, known as Galvatron.
Cade and his daughter help Optimus Prime protect Earth from an ancient and powerful menace and a new shadowy group determined to conquer the world.
- Transformers: The Last Knight (2017)
Michael Bay was still on board for the fifth Transformers film, marking the last live-action chapter in this timeline run. The Last Knight saw Mark Wahlberg return from the age of Extinction and join Josh Duhamel, John Turturro, and Glenn Morshower, who returned from the first three movies.
A brainwashed Optimus Prime, renamed Nemesis Prime, was sent back to Earth to retrieve Merlin’s staff. This could absorb Earth’s energy and restore Cybertron. Who better to join the saga for its final Bay-helmed installment than Sir Anthony Hopkins!
3. Watching Transformers in Galaxy-Brain chronological order
This one’s for the true Cybertron heads.
We recommend this playlist for those who’ve seen all of Transformers enough times that they want to mix things up with a different experience. In this order, you will jump around from movie to movie to retain as close to purely chronological order as possible.
It isn’t easy because of the franchise’s convoluted lore, and some flashbacks are included, but some aren’t. We made those decisions based on how much the flashback was shown, not just talked about.
The figure in parentheses is when the movie (or scene) occurs.
- Age of Extinction 0:00-2:19 (65 million years ago)
- Revenge of the Fallen 0:00-2:05 (17,000 B.C.)
- The Last Knight 0:00-7:00 (484 A.D.)
- Transformers 1:04:30-1:06:18 (1897)
- The Last Knight 1:13:00-1:13:48 (World War II)
- Dark of the Moon 0:00-08:50 (1961 into 1969)
- Bumblebee (1987)
- Rise of the Beasts (1994)
- The rest of Transformers (2007)
- The rest of Revenge of the Fallen (2009)
- The rest of Transformers: Dark of the Moon (2012)
- The rest of Transformers: Age of Extinction (2017)
- The rest of Transformers: The Last Knight (2022)
4. Transformers Animated Series Release Order and Watch Order
- Transformers: Generation 1 | 1984 = 1993
- The GoBots Universe | 1984 – 1986
- Challenge of the GoBots | 1984 – 1985
- The Transformers | 1984 – 1987
- GoBots: Battle of the Rock Lords | 1986
- Transformers: Scramble City | 1986
- Transformers: The Movie | 1986
- Transformers: The Headmasters | 1987
- Transformers: Super-God Masterforce | 1988
- Transformers: Victory | 1989
- Transformers: Zone | 1990
- Transformers: Generation 2 | 1993 – 1995
- Transformers: The Rebirth | 1996
- The Beast Era | 1996- 2000
- Beast Wars: Transformers | 1996 – 1999
- Beast Wars II: Super-Life Transformers | 1998
- Beast Wars II: Lio Convoy In Imminent Danger! | 1998
- Super Life-Form Transformers: Beast Wars Neo | 1999
- Beast Machines: Transformers | 1999 – 2000
- Transformers: Robots in Disguise | 2001
- The Unicron Trilogy | 2002 – 2005
- Transformers: Armada | 2002 – 2003
- Transformers: Energon | 2004
- Transformers: Robotmasters | 2004 – 2005
- Transformers: Cybertron | 2005
- Transformers: Animated | 2007 – 2009
- The Aligned Continuity | 2010 – Present
- Transformers: Prime | 2010 – 2013
- The Kre-O Transformers Shorts | 2011 – 2015
- Transformers: Rescue Bots | 2012 – 2016
- Transformers Go! | 2013
- Transformers Prime Beast Hunters: Predacons Rising | 2013
- Transformers: Robots in Disguise | 2015 – 2017
- The Prime Wars Trilogy | 2016 – 2018
- Transformers: Combiner Wars | 2016
- Transformers: Titan Return | 2017
- Transformers: Power of the Primes | 2018
- Transformers: Cyberverse | 2018 – 2020
- Transformers: Rescue Bots Academy | 2019 – Present
- The War for Cybertron | 2020
- Chapter 1: Siege | 2020
- Chapter 2: Earthrise | 2021
- Chapter 3: Kingdom | 2021
- Chapter 4: Transformers EarthSpark (2022- present)
- Transformers: BotBots | (2022-present)
- Nickelodeon’s Transformers Comedy Series | TBA
5. Run-Time And Binge Duration
The live-action series is about 17 hours long, and the animated series can go on for countless hours. It is recommended that you watch the animated series and the live-action series separately since the two are not connected.
While the films can be binged over a weekend, the animated series can be watched at a slower pace since many character arcs and storylines are involved. You might be overwhelmed if you try to watch these in one go.
6. What is the best way to watch Transformers movies?
The best way to watch Transformers movies is in their chronological watch order, which differs from the release date order. The continuity of the Transformers movies can be complex, as some films occur before or after others in the timeline.
Some spin-off movies, such as “Bumblebee,” take place in the same universe but feature different characters and storylines.
However, Since the timeline is pretty straightforward, some might prefer to watch the best films in the release order. This way, you can get the complete feel of the O.G. films before moving on to the prequel, which is a direct dive into this universe.
7. Where To Watch
The complete Transformers movie series is available on Amazon Prime Video. If you don’t have Prime Video, you can also find the series on Google Play that you can buy for $56.99.
While the 1980s Transformers animated series are hard to find online, you can still watch some on Prime Video, JustWatch, and other platforms.
You can then catch the complete animated series from various sites and sources, which may be pirated. So as always, please don’t wait for anything, and binge them all in one go. Happy Bingeing!
8. About Transformers Franchise
Transformers is a series of American science fiction action films based on the Transformers franchise which began in the 1980s as an animated series that go on till today.
Michael Bay has directed the first five films: Transformers (2007), Revenge of the Fallen (2009), Dark of the Moon (2011), Age of Extinction (2014), and The Last Knight (2017). A spin-off film, Bumblebee, directed by Travis Knight and produced by Bay, was released on December 21, 2018.
The Transformers series has received negative to mixed reception, except for Bumblebee which received positive reviews. It is the 13th-highest-grossing film series, with a total of $4.8 billion; two films in the series have grossed over $1 billion each.