Transformers  (2007)

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This action-packed thriller is the first of the live-action Transformers film series. It follows Sam Witwicky, a teenager who gets caught up in a war between the heroic Autobots and the villainous Decepticons, two factions of alien robots who can disguise themselves by transforming into everyday machinery, primarily vehicles. The Autobots intend to use the AllSpark, the object that created their robotic race, in an attempt to rebuild Cybertron and end the war while the Decepticons desire control of the AllSpark with the intention of using it to build an army by giving life to the machines of Earth. How will Sam impact this war between giants? Will the Autobots be willing to team up with the humans in order to defeat the Decepticons? What influence will these extraordinary events have on Sam's life?
See Storyline (May Contain Spoilers)

Cast: Shia LaBeouf

Crew: Michael Bay (Director)

Genres: Adventure, Sci-Fi, Thriller, War

Release Dates: 03 Jul 2007 (India)

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Did you know? To keep up the film's frenetic mood, most of the action sequences were shot practically with the actors performing their stunts live on camera. All computer-generated imagery were restricted only to the robots and certain essential scenes. Due to the intensity of the actions, the camera was kept in a box of bulletproof glass to which LaBeouf later quipped, "The camera's protected, but the actors are expendable!" Read More
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Direction

Director

Production

Executive Producer
Film Type:
Feature Film
Language:
English
Colour Info:
Color
Frame Rate:
24 fps
Aspect Ratio:
2.35 : 1
Stereoscopy:
No
Goofs:
Revealing Mistakes
In the fight between Megatron and Optimus Prime, there is a yellow Pontiac GTO shown for a second before it is torn in half. Before its destruction, the GTO's rocker panel is clearly already in two pieces which are not properly attached to the vehicle.

Character Error
After the soldiers are fired on by Starscream in Mission City, Epps tells Lennox that it had to be an Alien attacking them because friendly aircraft would never fly below buildings. Yet, when the friendly F22s attack Megatron, that's exactly what they do.

Character Error
At the end of the movie Secretary of Defense Keller says the remains of the Decepticons have been dropped into the Laurentian Abyss and identifies it as the 'deepest place on the planet'. In fact, the deepest place on earth is 'The Challenger Deep' in the Marianas Trench - 35,838 feet below sea level. The Laurentian Abyss is a gouge, by comparison, at 19,685 feet at its deepest section. In fact the Laurentian Abyss is not even the deepest in the Atlantic Ocean [The Marianas Trench is in the Pacific]. Deepest in the Atlantic is The Puero Rico Trench, at 27,651.

Continuity
As Mikaela runs towards Sam before he begins running with the cube she passes Bumblebee on the tow truck. But as she faces Sam you can see the tow truck behind her and Bumblebee is nowhere to be seen. Yet as she runs back to the tow truck Bumblebee reappears.

Miscellaneous
Ironhide complains about his foot rusting after Mojo "leaked lubricants" on him. Yet he crash landed in a pool when coming to earth and said nothing of rust. However, urine is essentially a diluted acid with salts in it, which would be more corrosive to ferrous metals than chlorinated pool water, so it could be that Ironhide's metal skin is rust-resistant but not rust-proof. More likely, however, is that he was grousing and exaggerating in the process, much like real people do; or just that he didn't complain at the time of landing in the swimming pool as there was nobody to complain to.

Miscellaneous
When the Cube is revealed a the secret base, we're told carbon dating has determined it to be on Earth since 10,000 BCE. Carbon dating is in fact accurate to within about 9 half lives of the carbon 14. 9 half lives of carbon 14 ( at 5280 years per half-life) gives an accuracy limit of about 50,000 years. 10,000 years BCE is well within the time frame able to be determined by radiometric dating using carbon ratios, and would in fact be the most accurate dating method for something in this time frame.

Miscellaneous
When the F-22 intercepts the helicopter 4500X the audio pronounces the tail number as "forty five hundred x-ray." Aviation standards require most numbers be pronounced individually and should have been pronounced "four five zero zero x-ray." However, most controllers are more compulsive than pilots about this and pilots would commonly abbreviate this to either "fourty five hundred" or "four five hundred".

Miscellaneous
The relationship between Captain Archibald Witwicky and Sam Witwicky keeps on changing throughout the film. At different points during the movie, Archibald is said to be Sam's great great grandfather, great grandfather, and grandfather. However, he could have just gotten tired of saying "my great-great grandfather, Archibald Witwicky..." He seldom said "great-great" other than in his report.

Miscellaneous
When Sam is in his class giving his presentation, he mentions that the sale price of his Great-Great-Grandfather's swag was to be put toward his "car fund", yet he clearly indicates to the teacher at the end of the class that he already has the $2000 he needs. However, it is very possible that Sam was planning on investing in his car or hoping to be able to buy a better car with more money.

Miscellaneous
When Mikaela leaves Sam after looking at his engine, the passenger door is open. When Sam starts the car, and closes the hood, the passenger door is closed. However, Bumblebee has shown himself able and willing to open and close his doors whenever he wants.

Miscellaneous
In this movie, it is stated that the robots are radioactive (they even use a "Geiger-Müller tube" to detect their presence). Given that Geiger-Müller tubes can detect even a single particle of ionizing radiation (even in the presence of no radioactive material they will still quietly click away due to normal background radiation), it's quite feasible that the radiation levels of the transformers is not sufficient to noticeably harm any of the humans they come into contact with, given their relatively brief exposure and the human body's ability to repair moderate amounts of radiation damage.

Revealing Mistakes
In the highway scene, right up until the shot when Bonecrusher tackles Optimus Prime, the road they are on is clearly ground level. In the shot immediately after, they are seen tumbling off an elevated highway road, falling onto a lower elevated road. Then they fell off again and finally reached ground level where they continued fighting.

Revealing Mistakes
During the first ride that Mikaela takes in Sam's car, both windows are obviously down during their conversation. Yet, neither one has any wind blowing on them. Their hair never moves.

Revealing Mistakes
When Ironhide is jumping over Devastator's missiles his shadow is clearly visible but the missiles have no shadow.

Revealing Mistakes
In the scene in Qatar where the scorpion-like robot is attacking the soldiers, there are two main explosions. Closer examination reveals that it is the exact same explosion used twice.

Revealing Mistakes
In the city fight scene, a large piece of a building falls onto the left side of the street, yet when a citizen passes by (and probably accidentally kicks it) the piece appears to move as if it weighed nothing.

Errors in Geography
During one scene in Qatar the soldiers pass Shiprock, a natural landmark found in New Mexico.

Errors in Geography
In the beginning, during the Qatar scenes, you can see mountains in the background. The country of Qatar has no mountains and the highest elevation is 295 feet above sea level. It would also be very unlikely that you would see wooden telephone poles, as we do in the desert scenes ostensibly set in Qatar. Most telephone poles in many middle-eastern countries, more specifically those used away from population centers and in the open desert, would be composed of metal or pre-formed concrete. The main reasons for this being, not only because the extremes of the high heat and low humidity in those climates would dry the wood to the point of breakage very quickly, but also because of the scarcity of logs of the size suitable for that usage.

Errors in Geography
Maggie Madsen leaves the Pentagon and runs south across the intersection of Wisconsin Ave. and "M" St. NW in Washington DC. The Pentagon however is three miles away via various major highways, too far to travel on foot. Had she come from the Pentagon, she'd have taken a different route that precludes her crossing the intersection in that direction, possibly avoiding it entirely (i.e. by taking K St. NW instead).

Factual Mistake
The movie referred to "high heat sabot rounds" as being the most effective against the robots. However, sabot rounds work strictly through kinetic energy and the heat produced by them is strictly a by-product. In other words, sabot rounds must travel at extremely high velocity to be effective. However, none of the weapons that supposedly used them in the movie would have been capable of producing the necessary velocity. This could also refer to a High Explosive Anti-Tank (HEAT) round, but that is a large shell with a shaped-charge exploding warhead, unlike the solid projectile of a sabot round.

Factual Mistake
When Sam is buying his new car, and Bumblebee uses his radio to smash the other cars windows, they all smash at the same time - but each window would need a different resonating frequency .

Factual Mistake
Glenn Morshower's character is referred to in the closing credits as 'SOCCENT Sergeant'. However, when we actually see him (in the film's opening scenes), he is clearly a Colonel: he wears the rank insignia of a Colonel, and is referred to as Colonel by his subordinates.

Crew/Equipment Visible
When Sam is running away from his car on the girl's bike and hits the broken sidewalk you can clearly see his double is the one that actually falls over the front of the bike.

Crew/Equipment Visible
In the scene where Megatron and Optimus Prime fall off the building after Optimus saves Sam, they land in front of a car that's just arriving. The car swerves to the left to avoid them. There's a shot from inside the car while it's doing so. During most of this shot, you can see the cameraman in the passenger seat, filming, reflected in the rear-view mirror.

Crew/Equipment Visible
When they go to the lake party a cameraman is visible in Mikaela's boyfriend's truck's mirror.

Crew/Equipment Visible
When Sam Witwicky arrives at the party, the camera crane can be briefly seen as a shadow.

Character Error
While in NBE1's (Megatron's) chamber, Simmons has a flag patch on his vest that is improperly worn. He has it on the right side of his chest and the union is facing away from his heart. When wearing a flag, the union must be placed nearest the heart and since Simmons has the patch on his right side, it should be a 'reversed field' flag patch that faces his heart, while he wears a 'left' flag on his right side that faces his arm. Typically, when wearing one flag patch, it should be worn on the left side of the body and is recommended that is be worn on the sleeve.

Character Error
Agent Simmons tells Sam about the loss of the "NASA mission Beagle II to Mars" which managed to send back an image of something on the surface before being destroyed. Beagle II was an ESA (European Space Agency) mission, not NASA, was intended to be a lander, not a rover. The images from Mars were based on the Mars Exploration Rover missions (Spirit and Opportunity) which do not resembled the Beagle II spacecraft at all. However, Simmons is elsewhere shown to have an extremely poor knowledge of where things come from.

Character Error
When Sam's father is driving into the Porsche store, the door of the driver is not well closed.

Character Error
Throughout the film, Qatar is pronounced with the emphasis on the second syllable. DoD employees would know the proper pronunciation stresses the first. CAU-ter is the closest, though English lacks an equivalent to the original Arabic, especially the peninsular dialect.

Character Error
Maggie Madsen says "you need to move past Fourier Transfers and..." She should have said "Fourier Transforms" in this context.

Character Error
When Mikaela opens Bumblebee's hood and says "...you've got a high-rise double pump carburetor...' when in fact that is a fuel injection setup.

Character Error
Sam says his Great-great-grandfather made his expedition in 1897. However, when Frenzy finds the article about the expedition on Air Force One, the newspaper article had a date of 1895.

Continuity
Day into night - twice during action shots (first at the SOCCENT base, later for Bumblebee's fight with Barricade), the action starts out in broad daylight and, in an implausibly short time, goes to black night.

Continuity
When the autobots are in vehicle mode, they are all cleanly polished, shiny and brand-new looking. However when they transform into robot mode, their shells (including identifiable parts from the vehicles) are covered in dents and scratches, even in scenes with no combat. This is most noticeable in the first scene with all five autobots together in the alley. When they return to vehicle mode, they are once again cleanly polished.

Continuity
When Sam is running from Barricade and hits Mikaela who is riding a moped they fall on the ground and the moped is clearly visible laying next to them on the ground. In the next shot they zoom out and the moped is nowhere to be seen.

Continuity
After Sam chases Bumblebee to the dumpster area, he is recording himself using his cell phone. When looking closely, it is clear that the cell phone is on the welcome page and not in camera mode.

Continuity
When Optimus Prime and Bonecrusher are fighting, they fall from a bridge onto a highway. A car with a mother and child swerves in order to avoid hitting the Transformers, and ends up at an angle, so that in order for the mother and son to see the Transformers they would have to look out of the passenger window. After the cut scene of them swerving to the side, the camera (from inside the vehicle) shows the Transformers fighting right in front of the front windshield.

Audio/Video Mismatch
When the soldiers are fighting the Scorponok, one soldier is on the phone trying to call the Pentagon, when he leaves the house searching for a credit card, he yells a lot of things, but his mouth movements does not match what he is saying.

Audio/Video Mismatch
When Captain Lennox is trying to contact the Pentagon during the fight with the scorpion thing in Qatar. He is on the phone with the operator and when he yells "I'm in the middle of a war-zone, this is frigging ridiculous." The words do not match what he actually says.

Audio/Video Mismatch
When the A-10 uses its 30mm cannon for strafing in the Qatar desert, the sound has absolutely nothing to do with the actual sound of a GAU-8 cannon firing. The real sound is more of a growl, sort of the sound of a vibrating cell phone on a hard surface.

Audio/Video Mismatch
At the air base in the beginning, the sound of the helicopter's blades locking plays before they actually lock.

Audio/Video Mismatch
During the battle in the city, Captain Lennox picks up an Aprilia RSV-Mille. Then the soundtrack reveals the high-pitch whine of a high-revving four-cylinder. In actual fact, the Aprilia is a V-Twin which would produce more of a low, thumping, two-cylinder sound.

Audio/Video Mismatch
Just after Barricade assaults Sam regarding the glasses, Bumblebee drives by, trips Barricade, then swings around and opens his passenger door to pick up Sam and Mikaela. For a brief moment as the door starts to open (and when it later closes), one can hear the distinctive buzz of a solenoid operating on 60 Hz AC power.

Crew/Equipment Visible
When the camera does a 360 around Bobby Boliva after the windows explode, the boom mic's shadow is clearly visible on his head.

Crew/Equipment Visible
After Anthony Anderson devours the Dunkin' Donuts tray, a boom mic is reflected in the Australian girl's nose ring.
Trivia:
The Decepticons outnumber the Autobots eight to five. This was a deliberate move by the writers to emphasize the Autobots' teamwork, and the threat the Decepticons pose to the world.

Michael Bay makes a cameo appearance in the film as the human Megatron flicks away.

The producers Ian Bryce and Kenny Bates appear as the workers/agents at the Hoover Dam.

Bumblebee was designed to visually represent a bumblebee: the colouring, the protrusions on his helmet as the antennae and the doors folding up behind him like the wings.

Michael Bay initially turned down directing the movie, considering it "a stupid toy movie." However, his inclination towards working with Steven Spielberg and wanting to make the first family film of his career, and also being a car buff, the idea of sentient cars interested him. He later admitted that not being a Transformers fan enabled him to introduce the saga to other non-fans.

Michael Bay initially thought Shia LaBeouf was too old to play a teenager but Labeouf with his audition and make over convinced the filmmakers that he could indeed appear younger than he actually was.

The "Moustache Man" hologram projected by the Decepticons is Brian Reece, a serving MH-53 pilot who was spotted while piloting the Blackout helicopters, and both Michael Bay and Steven Spielberg thought he had the right look (mean and cold) for a Decepticon hologram. Reece had to reschedule his wedding and honeymoon to film his scenes.

Shia LaBeouf's first scene filmed was where Sam is being attacked by guard dogs. One particularly fierce dog kept chasing him even after the scene was shot. He later summed it up as "Welcome to Michael Bay's set. Release the hounds!"

This was the fastest-selling DVD of 2007.

The character Mikaela Banes is named after the director Michael Bay.

The release date for this movie was set without a script or a cast.

Since there were no running 2009 Chevrolet Camaro automobiles during production, Saleen Inc., working with the Pontiac GTO and using Camaro designs from General Motors, was able to build up a running Camaro in 30 days, to serve as Bumblebee's alternate mode. Saleen Inc., also provided one of their S281 automobiles (a modified Ford Mustang) to serve as Barricade's alternate mode.

To make the cars appear sentient, stunt drivers wore black balaclavas and wherever possible, the cars were also given tinted windows and had their interiors darkened.

As part of the promotion campaign for the film, a special Sector 7 site was launched that featured videos showing "evidence" of Transformers having already arrived on Earth: a video featuring Grimlock destroying a construction site; Reflector transforming at a birthday party; Kickback and Laserbeak being accidentally videotaped; and a security video showing Bumblebee (in his old VW Beetle mode) transforming in a parking garage.

Michael Bay originally wanted an Apple iPod for Simmon's demonstration in the All Spark chamber, but Apple CEO Steve Jobs objected to the use of one of his products, and a Nokia cellphone was used instead.

The scene where Megatron corners Sam at the top of a tall building and he clings on to a statue out of sheer panic and fright, LaBeouf was actually on top of the building wearing a safety harness but with no safety net beneath him terrorizing him for real.

The film's tagline "Their war. Our world." was originally meant for AVP: Alien vs. Predator (2004).

According to Megan Fox, while she was attending a Linkin Park concert and the band met her personally and stated that they heard about the live-action Transformers film and requested whether they could have a song of theirs in the film. And thus the Linkin Park song "What I've Done" appears in the closing credits.

Tyrese Gibson paid the filmmakers to get him a role in the film.

To prepare for their roles, Josh Duhamel and Tyrese Gibson spent three days in boot camp, and Gibson spent time with combat controller Ray Bollinger to make his dialog sound natural.

Optimus Prime's original alternate mode in The Transformers (1984) was a cab. This was revised to a long-nosed Peterbilt truck because test designs showed that a cab could only disguise a 20-foot robot, and so the larger Peterbilt truck was chosen to make Prime taller (at 32 feet). The truck was colored blue with red flames (like Rodimus Prime), to give him a distinct look.

In the Transformers (1984) series, the Autobots had blue optics (eyes) and the Decepticons had red optics. The animators created a new design resembling a camera shutter in order to make the robots more engaging; however, the color scheme remains the same in exception of the Decepticon's spy Frenzy, who's got blue optics.

To keep up the film's frenetic mood, most of the action sequences were shot practically with the actors performing their stunts live on camera. All computer-generated imagery were restricted only to the robots and certain essential scenes. Due to the intensity of the actions, the camera was kept in a box of bulletproof glass to which LaBeouf later quipped, "The camera's protected, but the actors are expendable!"

Frenzy's Cybertronian dialogue is mostly the word "Tutankhamun" repeated over and over rapidly.

Steve Jablonsky was assisted by his mentor Hans Zimmer in composing the musical score.

Sam's eBay name LadiesMan217 refers to Michael Bay's birthday the 17th of February. The eBay name was an actual user name who's last activity was at the same time the movie released.

In his police car mode, Barricade's front holds the Decepticon symbol, and reads "Pacis Quod Alcedonia" (Latin for "Still, Halcyon days of Peace") and "Incorporated since June 1865." His rear side reads "To punish and enslave," a twisted version of the slogan "To protect and serve."

According to the ILM animators, each and every transformation in the film is unique, with thousands of components moving around in significantly different orders/sequences and via different routes around the body. This is because the robots transform in a fluid, instinctive manner depending on their circumstances. The animators admited that each transformation was mainly animated to make it look interesting and believable.

Michael Bay cut his fee by 30% in order to save expenses on shooting and to keep the film in the United States territory which he was familiar with.

As the Decepticons' pilot holograms flicker, Optimus Prime's face can be seen for an instant.

Bumblebee's original alternate mode in The Transformers (1984) was a Volkswagen Beetle. This was revised to a 1976/2009 Chevrolet Camaro because Michael Bay wanted to avoid comparisons with Herbie the Love Bug, and felt that the Camaro held a more tough-but-friendly quality than the Beetle. As a tribute to the series, a yellow Volkswagen Beetle appears next to Bumblebee at the car shop (and he damages it as a joke!).

The Decepticons were to have more dialogue in the film, but most of their lines were cut out to keep them mysterious. To please the fans, though, Megatron's classic berating of Starscream ("You fail me yet again, Starscream...") from The Transformers (1984) was put in the film.

To keep the film realistic and under budget, the U.S. Department of Defense provided their support towards the film's production. The Military provided their vehicles as the alternate modes of the Decepticons Starscream and Bonecrusher and also allowed their F-22 and CV-22 aircraft to be filmed. Soldiers served as extras, and authentic uniforms were provided for the actors. In a gesture of gratitude, the filmmakers provided an advance screening of the film for the soldiers, free of charge.

The Transformers possessed such a rich level of detail and complexity it took the ILM animators 38 hours to fill them in a single frame of the film.

Shia LaBeouf was so amazed by the "Project Iceman's" set, that he would secretly visit the set on weekends bringing his friends along.

The female Autobot Arcee was going to appear in the film, but the writers couldn't properly explain the concept of robot gender in the film. She was replaced with Ironhide.

The sequence where Bonecrusher smashes a bus in half was an actual stunt filmed live on camera. The bus was constructed with a split-line and had cables built in to hold it together until they were cut off, as well as explosives and cannons which were used to blow the bus apart.

During filming, Mark Ryan acted as a stand-in for the Transformers on set in order to give the actors a physical presence to react to/act against. He also ad-libbed characters during the film's post-production and was eventually taken on board to voice the Autobot Bumblebee.

Ratchet's alternate mode is a Hummer H2 search-and-rescue vehicle. The truck is an original Hummer built from scratch for the film and modified to have a sturdier build. The vehicle was painted green to give it a distinct look although a Ratchet toy released in commemoration of the film featured him in his classic red/white look.

The military aircraft seen in the film did not fire a single shot during filming; all their shots were created through CGI.

A sign reading "Takara Sushi" can be seen during the Battle, shortly after Jazz and Ratchet engage Devastator in combat. The Japanese toy company Takara was responsible for Transformers in Japan until it was sold to Hasbro.

In her role as Mikaela Banes, Megan Fox gained ten pounds of muscle to be more compatible for the action scenes.

This was the highest-grossing film in Malaysia, with about $5.2 million.

Sam at first believes that Bumblebee is a Japanese robot. Transformers originally originated in Japan. Agent Simmons also talks about samurai, furthering the Japanese connection.

To save money, the filmmakers had entered into a production deal with General Motors which saved them about $3 million. The company provided 3 versions of the alternate modes of the Autobots, and also provided around 200 cars that were blown up in the Battle of Mission City.

Peter Cullen, the original voice of Optimus Prime, described reprising the role as "slipping into an old pair of very comfortable shoes that you haven't worn for a while," and was grateful to the fans for wanting and bringing him back.

During the Scorponok Desert Attack, Captain Lennox who called for reinforcements through a telephone was inspired by a real-life anecdote that a soldier had told Michael Bay during filming. In the middle of the Grenada invasion, a unit lost its radio in an attack instead found a nearby telephone line and one of the soldiers in the unit helped out by giving his credit card to get through to the Pentagon.

Prior to shooting the scene in which the Autobots intercept the Sector 7 convoy, an extra who was driving the car where Sam and Mikeala were being held was worried that he would be injured when the agents are being disarmed by Jazz. Michael Bay assured him that no harm would come to him as the guns would quickly be pulled back by bungee cords, and were moreover made of rubber. But during the shoot, a rubber gun struck the extra on his temple as it was being pulled away, causing him to wince in pain. Bay could only give a sheepish apology for the extra's misfortune.

According to Lorenzo di Bonaventura, while designing the Transformers a test Optimus Prime was designed in CGI with his classic boxy look from The Transformers (1984), but he looked fake and boring. So the robots were designed in a more intricate, three-dimensional image to be more realistic and to reflect their alien origins. The major influences in these designs were real-world physics where each robot matches the size of its chosen disguise, the Rubik's Cube with numerous pieces moving to convert one thing to another and samurai armour.

Optimus Prime is the only Autobot in the film to transform from truck to robot and not the other way around. All the other Autobots transform from their robot modes into vehicles at some point in the film.

In the film, Megatron does not choose an alternate mode, out of arrogance not to disguise himself on Earth. He instead maintains his alien protoform/jet mode. His original alternate mode in The Transformers (1984) was a Walther P38 pistol, but the writers felt it was like "having Darth Vader transform into his own lightsaber and someone else swinging him around," hence he was given a more realistic alien design to make him menacing.

According to one of the CGI artists at the Industrial Light & Magic studio, the Transformers are composed out of a total of 60,217 pieces. Optimus Prime is composed of 10108 pieces, Megatron of 2411 pieces, and Bumblebee out of 7433 pieces. Ironhide being the bulkiest Transformer in the film, both his guns were composed of 10,000 pieces each.

For the scene where the Scorponok bursts out of the sand right on the heels of the soldiers, the effect was achieved by detonating a primer cord under the sand. The explosions would be in close proximity and very dangerous to the actors in the scene, so before the scene was shot, Michael Bay told the actors to run and keep running no matter what happens or else they could be seriously injured or, even worse, killed. As a result, the look of panic on the actors' faces as they flee from the Scorponok in this scene is 100% genuine.

According to one of the CGI artists at the Industrial Light & Magic studio, if you took all the polygons (CGI blocks) from all the Transformer models they created and strung them end to end, they'd reach the moon and back and you'd still have enough left to build the Roman Colosseum in Italy twice.