Tag Archives: terminator

Terminator: Dark Fate (2019)

I’ll be back, 3.5 readers…with a review of the latest time traveling kill bot movie.

After the last Terminator movie of a few years ago, I really thought this franchise had been terminated.  They made two great films a long time ago, and everything else has been garbage ever since.

Generally, they are all the same story.  The robots travel through time, wanting to kill John Connor.  Someone has to save John, usually Arnie in the form of a good terminator, usually with a human helper and so on.

That gold has been mined and nothing but dirt remains.

I’ll admit I was surprised as this latest installment, IMO, didn’t totally suck.  It doesn’t deserve a spot next to the first two, but among the list of garbage sequels, it is the least trashy.  It has great effects, at least an attempt at a plot and action that kept me riveted, even if it is all just the same story told over again.

Linda Hamilton and Arnie are given a break from the nursing home, this time to play Sarah Connor and yet another terminator turned good.  While Hamilton makes the flick, the storyline that gets Arnie back into the picture causes the movie to jump the shark (he’s a terminator who learned the error of his ways and retired from terminating to start a family and um…how the hell does that even work?)

Together, they help an augmented human from the future (that girl from Halt and Catch Fire and I’m too lazy to look up her name) save Dani (again I’m too lazy to look up her name) who will become the leader of the next robot resistance if she can be saved from a new brand of terminator who is able to seperate his robot self from his human-looking self (also not going to look up his name.)

Yes, it’s the same old story jammed into a different wrapper but the best I can say it is if we rank all Terminator films, it is number three on a scale of best to worst, though a distant third from the two originals.  Really, this franchise should have stopped at two.

STATUS: Shelf-worthy.

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Movie Review – Terminator Genisys (2015)

The Mother of Dragons forgets her turquoise dress!  An elderly terminator that needs to be in bed by 4 pm!

Bookshelf Q. Battler here with a review of Terminator Genisys 

OBLIGATORY SPOILER WARNING

At the outset, let me give this film a compliment (of sorts):

1)  It’s the best Terminator film since T2: Judgement Day…

2)  …but that’s not saying much because Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines and Terminator Salvation were a couple of hot steamy turd sandwiches served up on a pair of silver platters.

That’s not intended as an insult to this film. I just think it might be impossible to beat the moments of sheer terror and exhilarating action provided by the first two films in the franchise.

For a moment, that’s what I thought this film was trying to do.  Hell, for a moment in the beginning, I thought it might even achieve that miraculous feat.

The film starts in 1984.  Without letting the cat out of the bag, let’s just say that the original evil Arnold terminator from the first movie (i.e. a totally buff CGI version of Arnold in his prime) squares off against a nice Arnold terminator akin to John Connor’s protector in the second film.  Meanwhile, a T1000, the shapeshifting liquid metal baddie from the second film jumps into the mix.

Sarah Connor (played by the Khaleesi..er I mean Emilia Clarke) and Kyle Reese (Sarah Connor’s human protector from the original film, played in this installment by Jai Courtney) round out the action.

In other words, it seemed like a great idea.  Take the best parts of the best two films in the franchise and throw them together in one big mashup.

Unfortunately, it doesn’t last long as the story jumps to 2017, where Genisys, a new form of Skynet that takes advantage of our love/lust relationship with cell phones, social media, and non-stop connectivity, needs to be stopped.

Arnold plays “Pops,” another “good terminator,” this one having been sent back in time to be Sarah’s protector.  We’re told that synthetic terminator skin ages over time, thus explaining why a man/machine looks like he’s ready to play a rousing game of bingo at the senior center.  We (or at least I) go along with it to give the Governator another bite at the apple.

Why not?  The guy did give us so many awesome action flicks when he was in his prime and oddly enough, the “old terminator” concept is touching at times.

I don’t want to give away who the ultimate baddie is in this film but suffice to say, I thought that part was dumb.  Alas, I can’t tell you why without spilling the beans.  Maybe after a week or two after folks have had the chance to see it I’ll talk about it.

Clarke provides a great performance in her first major role that doesn’t involve dragons.  (Still, if there could be a Terminators vs. Dragons crossover that’d be epic).

That being said, she’s a far cry from actress Linda Hamilton, who as Sarah Connor in the first film, convinced me that she was a damsel in distress and in the second film, convinced me that she’d turned herself into a gung-ho no holds barred ready to rock robot killing machine.

Throughout the film, there’s a whole lot of “timeline stuff.”  This happened in this timeline so that happened in that timeline.  If that happens now will it happen later?  Can people have two sets of memories, one from one timeline and one from another?

I don’t know.  That part’s confusing.  If you can figure it out, be my guest.  I have a life, folks, so I don’t have time to sit down with a flowchart and a slide rule and figure out the various outcomes of what happens when fictional manbots do various things at different times.

Here’s a Pop Culture Mystery Question I need to ask Hatcher to track down:

1)  If John Connor sends Kyle Reese back in time to save his mother, Sarah Connor (in the original 1984 version and in this one)

2)  And John Connor is conceived as a byproduct of Sarah Connor and Kyle Reese boinking in the first film (I’m sorry, as a result of their love)

3)  Then how is there a damn John Connor to send Kyle Reese back in time in the first place?

Thank God there’s a super sleuth in my employ to answer questions like these.  This one’s been rattling around in my head for ages.

If you know the answer, help Hatcher out.

Overall, it is a solid summer blockbuster and it’s great to see aspects we loved from the first two films on the big screen again.  It doesn’t rise up to the level of the first two, but it does surpass the third and fourth installments.

(The fourth installment being that one where Christian Bale played John Connor and famously shouted all kinds of abuse at a lightning guy for breaking his concentration.)

SIDENOTE – The CGI version of Arnold in his 1984 prime was pretty convincing.  Will there ever be a time when movies could be made entirely using CGI characters?  Do actors/actresses have something new to worry about?

STATUS:  Shelf-worthy.

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Movie Review – Avengers: Age of Ultron (2015)

Iron Man!  Thor!  Hulk!  Captain America!  Black Widow!  Hawkeye!  Various and sundry other Avengers!

ASSEMBLE!

It’s time for Bookshelf Q. Battler’s review of Avengers: Age of Ultron!

Dun…dun dun da dun…dun dun…dunnnnn….dun dun da dun dun dun!

Sorry, that was me trying to sing the Avengers’ theme song.  Doesn’t translate well through the written word.

The summer movie season is has arrived and Hollywood is coming out swinging with this superhero extravaganza.

If you SPOILERS make you angrier than Bruce Banner with a stubbed toe, you might not want to click below:

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