"Terminator: Genisys" Review
A brand-new Terminator movie is here to try and undo past injustices (Rise of the Machines; Salvation) in order to satisfy fans of the originals while introducing something new for neophytes. Sadly, a few shards of promise do not a great Terminator make.
Witness the birth of the franchise as Genisys starts with some pretty cool scenes that set up the arrival of The Terminator in 1984. Then after the exposition is complete, witness what is essentially a boring retread of the original masterpiece in an alternate timeline that makes no sense whatsoever. The story tries to build on the original by exploring what the world/future would be like if Kyle Reese (Jai Courtney) was sent back to protect Sarah Connor from The Terminator (Arnold Schwarzenegger) only to find her as the hardened warrior fans remember from Terminator 2: Judgement Day. Oh, and Arnie really is back as the killer-turned-protector robot. Sarah even calls him "Pops."
I mean, really? Is this the talking velociraptor moment for the Terminator series?
That said, Arnold's scenes are the best thing about the film. His rehabilitated T-800 is still something of a "fish out of water" as he attempts to fit in as a normal person in Genisys. I think scribes Laeta Kalogridis and Patrick Lussier wanted to add a new catchphrase to Terminator'sclassic compendium by having Arnie use the word "theoretically" when explaining solutions to problems. "Theoretically," the word's use is dubious most times, which makes it pretty fun. But "theoretically," it could never top "I'll be back" or "Hasta la vista, baby."
Aside from that, there's really nothing else of merit in Terminator: Genisys. All the action sequences, save for the climax which is actually fairly exciting, are shown in the trailers that have been playing for months. The cardinal sin, however, is that the film's biggest twist is also given away in the trailers. That's how you know you've got a terrible movie on your hands. This just feels like another bad action film hindered by a market-friendly PG-13 rating.
Courtney as Kyle Reese also displays little to no chemistry with this iteration of Sarah Connor (Emilia Clarke). I've always found Courtney to be a very generic actor, and the character of Kyle Reese should be anything but generic. Clarke isn't totally lifeless, but Linda Hamilton she is not. I would not care to see Courtney and/or Clarke together again in a Terminator movie, or really anything else for that matter.
Arnold is back!
10-15 minutes of pretty good prequel material
Generic action scenes ruined by marketing
Big plot twist ruined by marketing
Sanitized PG-13 violence
Written by Ben C. of The Reel