So as many of you will note, this review is coming a bit late. But I finally just got a chance to see the film Terminator: Genisys. Unfortunately, because I had waited so long to see the film, I had already heard a fair amount of opinions on the film. But I decided to put all those opinions aside, and attempt to watch the film on its own merits.
I should probably start off by pointing out that Terminator 2 is one of my top five movies of all time. Its use of ground-breaking (at the time) CGI, plus its story rooted in our fears of technology mixed with the remnants of our cold war fears, made it a treat for me to see as a young man. Since then, we have been treated to Terminator 3, Terminator:Salvation, and finally now Terminator:Genisys, which is a reboot/sequel, alternate timeline movie in the vein of the new Star Trek films.
It’s not that this movie is bad. It’s that it jumps around so much with different timelines, that it becomes confusing at times. It also asks the viewers to take massive leaps of faith in terms of believing that certain events could even happen (even in the world of terminators). The biggest sin that the movie committed occurred before the film was ever released. For some reason, whoever was in charge of advertising decided to release the major plot twist of the film in the second trailer, essentially destroying what could have been a great surprise. If the rest of the movie had been incredible, this might not have been a problem. But because the rest of the film is average to good, it simply could not withstand the hit.
The performances in the movie were decent, but Emilia Clarke struggled to remove herself from the shadow of Linda Hamilton’s iconic performance. She simply did not have the toughness the Hamilton displayed in Terminator 2. Part of this seems not to be her fault, as the character is written to attempt to fall between the weaker Sarah Connor of the original Terminator, and the battle ready Sarah Connor of Terminator 2. Because of this it seems that she is supposed to be tough, but comes off very weak at times.
Jai Courtney does an adequate job portraying Kyle Reese as the soldier willing to go back in time and give his life to protect Sarah Connor.
Arnold Schwarzenegger does a respectable job as portraying the terminator, a role that helped with his meteoric rise to fame. He still brings a fair amount of charisma to the role, but isn’t necessarily given much to work with in terms of the script he was given, so much of his time is wasted, and then his character is given a pretty ridiculous twist towards the end, which was so ridiculous that for some, it ruined the entire film.
This film was supposed to be the first of a new trilogy, but the lackluster box office results may have stifled those plans. Maybe that’s a good thing for now.