We Watched 20 Minutes Of Transformers: The Last Knight

While Transformers: The Last Knight features some familiar human and robot faces, it’s clear that the fifth instalment in the Transformers movie franchise will go where no other instalment has gone before.

Earlier this week, approximately 20 minutes of selected IMAX footage from the upcoming film was screened for a lucky batch of Transformers fans, giving viewers a chance to re-familiarize themselves with the likes of Bumblebee, Optimus Prime (voiced by Peter Cullen) and Cade Yeager (Mark Wahlberg).

Viewers also got to meet a handful of new characters, including Anthony Hopkins as historian Sir Edmund Burton, Guardians of the Galaxy‘s Laura Haddock as Professor Vivian Wembley, stand-up comic Jerrod Carmichael as Desi, and relative newcomer Isabela Moner as Izabella.

Based on the preview footage, Izabella may just be the character that audiences root for the most—when viewers first meet Izabella, she’s trying to protect a group of fellow children as well as her tiny Autobot sidekick, Sqweeks, from being detected by a security bot. Eventually, Cade and Bumblebee step in to rescue the youngsters, including Izabella. However, despite Cade’s insistence that Izabella return home, Izabella boldly informs Cade that she has no home and that she wants to team up with Cade to help him “fix things” and protect the existing members of her autobot “family.” Pretty impressive.

Hopkins’ Sir Edmund, on the other hand, seems slightly less daring but equally, if not more, intelligent than Izabella. In another preview scene, Cogman corners Cade, Izabella, and Desi and informs Cade that Sir Edmund has been instructed to “collect” Cade. Cogman also nonchalantly tells Cade that he has been “chosen” to complete a “quest” and that he’s “more important than you can possible imagine.”

Cade, Bumblebee, and Cogman meet Sir Edmund in front of his impressive countryside residence, and while viewers may initially be unsure about what to think Edmund’s seemingly rambling, eccentric personality, they’ll soon discover that he’s extremely clever and well-researched, meaning that Cade will likely have to turn to him more than once in order to successfully fulfill his “quest.” Plus, Sir Edmund owns an adorable dog and at one point casually uses the term “bitchin,” so what’s not to love?

Sir Edmund shows Cade and his other “hostage,” Professor Wembley, an ancient-looking round table—presumably the very table used by King Arthur and his group of loyal knights. A flashback scene depicting Arthur, Lancelot, and the other knights reveals that Transformers existed in medieval times, too, and suggests that Cade may actually be the “knight” described in Arthurian Legend who is meant to save the world from destruction.

While the Arthurian tie-in may seem odd, the preview footage of the Knights of the Round Table as well as articles explaining that the medieval connection might actually be a call-back to the 1980’s Transformers animated series has us feeling confident that the old-timey twist will, as director Michael Bay promised in a short intro video, help Transformers: The Last Knight feel “fresh.” We’re also hoping the twist is a sign of more experimental storytelling to come, as Bay also explained that up to 14 Transformers sequels are already in the works.

One thing’s for sure—Transformers: The Last Knight (apparently the first-ever film to be natively shot in IMAX 3D) will be a audio-visual spectacle you won’t want to miss. You can watch the  trailer for The Last Knight, which comes out on June 23, below.