Money Lessons from Tranformers movie

I just watched the movie Tranformers last Sunday. Never thought that it was a lengthy one – 2 hours 30 mins! There are several scenes in the movie that provide personal finance lessons. If you missed out some or never even notice any, here are the money lessons listed below:

image: Transformer movie tickets

Scene 1.

Sam Witwicky got a used car. His father financially made a right choice to get Sam a decades old car. The old Camaro cost $4000. I am just curious, does it really cost that much for a very old Camaro? A new 8th Generation Honda Civic is only priced $17,000 in the US now.
When my son grows up in the future, I will make sure that his first car is a used one too!

Image: Sam bought this old Camaro with $4000

Later in the movie, the Autobot Bumblebee transformed into a new Camaro.

Image: New camaro as Bumblebee

Quotes from the movie:

  • Bobby Bolivia: A driver don’t pick the cars. Mmm-mm. Cars pick the driver.
  • Ron ‘Sparkplug’ Witwicky: [drives past a Porsche dealer] I’ve got a little surprise for you, son.
    Sam ‘Spike’ Witwicky: No, no, no, no! Dad! Oh, you’ve got to be kidding me!
    Ron ‘Sparkplug’ Witwicky: Yeah, I am. You’re not getting a Porsche!
  • Mikaela: So for a super advanced robot why does he turn into a piece of crap camero?
    [Bumble Bee opens his passanger side door and lets Mikaela and Sam out and takes off speeding down the tunnel]
    Sam ‘Spike’ Witwicky: Oh great you just pissed him off. There goes $4000 just speeding away.
    [Bumble Bee pops a side wheelie and scans another car]


Lesson 1: Get a used car as your first car


  • Pay less for a car, result in higher net worth
  • Pay less for auto insurance
  • Car depreciate in value over time. The more you save the more you gain πŸ™‚
  • You’ll never know that the car is actually an Autobot or Decepticon (just kidding larr)

Scene 2.

Sam Witwicky need $1000 plus three A subjects in order to get the free car from his father. Thus, he made a presentation about his grandfather’s Arctic expedition and tried to sell off his glasses. The spectacles is also listed at eBay auction. In real world, you can get the glasses in year 2008. It is now being auction for charity over US$3,050 at eBay.

Image: The Witwicky glasses used as movie props with case.

Quotes from the movie:


Lesson 2: Liquidate your junk


  • earn extra money
  • liquidate your junk instead of throwing them away.
  • it is even better than recycling
  • Probably you will get noticed by Optimus Prime (just kidding πŸ™‚ )

Scene 3.

A Decepticon crushed a store. A kid said that “I sure hope they have insurance”. How could a business live without insurance? You should insure your machine, your shop, and also your own life.

Quotes from the movie:

  • Cafe’ kid 1: [after a Decepticon has crushed a store] I sure hope they have insurance.

Lesson 3: Insure your business


  • your assets is protected from disaster
  • your business can still continue operation when the key person is unable to perform due to premature death or dread disease.

Scene 4.

Captain Lennox is desperately calling Pentagon. But he got stuck at the telephone operator asking him to produce a credit card. Credit card is really a helpful tool because you don’t have to have cash to make a purchase. But be extra careful of how to use your credit card. In most case of emergency, a credit card with remaining credit will be helpful most of the time. Bring your credit along whenever possible.

Quotes from the movie:

  • [Captain Lennox is using Epps’ credit card to call the Pentagon while his men fight Scorponok]
    Captain Lennox: Okay, it’s a Visa…
    International Operator: Also, sir, have you heard about our Premium Plus full service call package?

Image: Captain Lennox

Lesson 4: Credit card helps


  • Credit card statement is the easiest way to track your expenses
  • Credit card give you a better cash flow because you only need to pay the amount before due date. Normally it is 20-50 days after you made the purchase
  • Credit card gives rebate
  • Credit card is useful during emergency when you don’t have much cash

Did I miss any money lesson from the movie? Please share you view in the comment.

About The Author


personal finance author and trainer


  • Chee Kui

    Reply Reply July 17, 2007

    geez, pretty good observation πŸ˜‰

  • Very nice review πŸ˜‰

    I’ll have to check out the movie now!

    and thanks for visiting my blog.

  • kclau

    Reply Reply July 17, 2007

    Chee Kui and Adventures in Money Making,
    thanks for reading this post. See you around.

  • Ken

    Reply Reply July 18, 2007

    Wow, even watching movie and you still thinking about personal saving, i guess this is really job habit.

  • kclau

    Reply Reply July 18, 2007

    Ken, that’s the fun of watching movie and working at the same time πŸ™‚
    I guess you also enjoy what you are doing daily right?

  • LifeOfAbundance

    Reply Reply July 18, 2007

    Don’t forget Lesson 1 when ur son is all grown up. U may be a very rich man by then, KC, but u r not gonna spoil ur kid, rite? πŸ™‚ Teaching him how to manage wealth is one of the greatest lessons to give a kid.

  • kclau

    Reply Reply July 18, 2007

    Hi LifeofAbundance,
    I’ll make sure my son get the old car πŸ™‚ maybe a very old honda civic

  • Ken

    Reply Reply July 19, 2007

    definitely, to be able to do what you love to do, it’s a bless:)

  • Bob T

    Reply Reply July 26, 2007

    I haven’t seen the movie, but just from this post, I would say Lesson 4a should be Don’t get pushed into impulse purchases. (NO I DONÒ€ℒT WANT A PREMIUM PACKAGE!) Especially not over the phone.

    When my CC expired recently, I got routed to a salesperson when I called to activate the replacement. Every time I told him No, he’d go on to the next “benefit” I was eligible for at a low price per month.
    Finally, to save time, I had to say Okay, we’re done, bye!

  • kclau

    Reply Reply July 26, 2007

    HI Bob T,
    That’s a great one! ( “Okay, weÒ€ℒre done, bye!” )
    However, they are trained to do that and they just don’t care about your objection and rejections. I think they’ll never feel bad about it too.
    But sometimes this kind of thing irritates and we might shift to other service provider, which is their competitor.


    Reply Reply February 29, 2008

    Hi KCLau, pretty cool article you have there. Makes wealth management sounds entertaining. πŸ˜€

  • Porsche Blog

    Reply Reply December 4, 2008

    Actually, it can happen at a lot less than 60 mph. The Porsche has such low ground clearance that the problem might have been the angle of descent, and the fact that there were two speed bumps.

  • Nazri

    Reply Reply October 25, 2010

    Pretty good observation. I think u should add up on lesson 4:- No need to get extra, when basic can do. Meaning when basic service is ok for us no need to get better service which cost us more.

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