This story is kinda fucked up, but stick with me: way back when my father was in high school, he had an outdoor cat. One morning, he woke up to the unmistakable sound of a dog crying in tremendous pain; a gut wrenching sound to be sure, nothing you’d ever want to wake up to in the least. So, with concern in his heart, he went outside to investigate the source of that terrible noise. After a minute or two, he walked onto a gory site. Garfield (he wasn’t terribly original. when it came time to name his son, he just read the name on his shirt) had fought with an old stray dog ( I assume Garfield started the fight because cats are dicks.) Garfield gouged the dog’s eye out, and it was curled up into the pool of blood spilling out of him. The dog was clearly dying, there wasn’t much time left. So he did what he thought had to be done. He went in the house, got a rifle, and went back outside and shot the dog. It wasn’t easy, but he felt it was the right thing to do.
Why tell you this story?
Sometimes we have to do something we feel is terrible in order to move on, or, to let others move on.
The Terminator franchise has been dying a slow death for the better part of twenty years, and instead of just letting the first two films live in Movie Valhalla; forever fondly remember by film fans, they continually hook this hemorrhaging carcass to new vessels, in a sad attempt to prolong it’s life.
Well, after watching the trailers for Terminator: Genisys, I think we can all agree it’s time to get the rifle.
I would say there hasn’t been a good movie Terminator movie since 1991’s T2: Judgement Day. Personally, I think it’s James Cameron’s best film, one that still holds up today, despite the fact Edward Furlong gives a performance that makes Jake Lloyd seem like likable.
The movie was a landmark in Sci-fi Action and was a huge financial success. Knowing they’d reached rareified air, they continued to throttle a goose that’s pooping out golden eggs. So that brings us to 2003’s Terminator: Rise of the Machines. It’s never a good sign when a sequel takes over a decade to be released. Another harbinger of the impending shittiness of a sequel is that none of the people that made the original films have anything to do with the movie. You like James Cameron? He’s out (yes he gets a story by credit but that doesn’t count.) Cameron’s replacement? Jonathan Mostow, the man behind such cinematic masterworks like U-571 and Beverly Hills Bodysnatchers.
As far as rest of the cast goes: the only returning member is Arnold Schwarzenegger, who in 2003 was defiantly following the Robert De Niro career path of doing any movie put in front of you because…fuck it, why not? Money is money. In short: the movie was not good. They swapped out the cold menace of the T-1000 for boob jokes and a female terminator called the Terminatrix.
The only tradition continued from the previous film were the Furlong-esque performances of Claire Danes and Nick “That Yellow Bastard” Stahl (when your most memorable acting credit is an obese Child molester the color of French’s mustard, it may be time to get a new agent.) The movie also attempted to put into canon that the evil robot apocalypse was inevitable, despite any time travel strings you may have pulled. It didn’t make much sense and it’s basically ignored in the series.
After Rise of the Machines came the Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles tv series, which I’m not going to talk about in this rant, because I’m only focusing on the films. The films never addressed the show so, I’m not either.
So, a mere six years after the last film, McG delivered his magnum opus: Terminator Salvation. Here’s a quick note: if you decide you want people to address you as something that sounds like it’s on the dollar menu at McDonalds, there’s also a pretty high percentage that you’re never going to be taken seriously as a filmmaker. Sam Peckenpah never changed his name to “Sammy Pecks” for good reason.
I’m not going to spend much time on Salvation because it’s not worth the words. The greatest contribution from the film’s production is Christian Bale’s epic on set meltdown and evisceration of some unfortunate stage hand. One can hardly blame Bale, however, if you were forced to spout out the dialog he was asked to, and work beside Sam Worthington: the acting equivalent of Tekken’s Mokujin. You’d probably be pretty sour and prone to meltdowns too. This film came and quickly faded away. It was at the time what seemed like the final nail in the ol’ cyber coffin.
Until now… a Cybernetic hand has clawed itself from the murky depths of IP hell and emerged to reach for one more big-ass stack of money. From the pain of death comes the joy of rebirth- 2015’s Terminator: Genisys, because nothing screams cutting edge b3tt3r than misspelled words.
This time around, humanity’s last hope Kyle Reese has to go back in time to save Sarah Connor. She’s the mother of John, the legendary leader of the human resistance, from the the evil steel hands of the terminator.
I know what you’re all thinking:
“Wait …what? That’s the plot of the first movie! That’s the exactly same plot!”
To the contrary, Eric Bana; there’s *dun dun daaaaaa!* a twist! This time, when Reese goes back in time, he’s greeted by a young. shotgun-wielding Sarah Connor; who saves him from a Asian T-1000 (because I guess Robert Patrick was busy doing nothing ) and she says to him “come with me if you want to live!” OH MY GOD GUYS THAT’S JUST LIKE IN THE GOOD MOVIE!! DID YOU GET THAT? HOLY SHIT THAT IS SO CLEVER! *BANGS HEAD REPEATEDLY INTO DESK* In the words of Onyx: “but, but wait, it gets worse” we find out this Sarah Connor has been hanging with an Arnold Schwarzenegger Terminator for over ten years preparing for Reese to show up! Then Arnold smiles, because that’s really funny cuz he’s a robot get it? *BANGS HEAD AGAIN*
Arnold, it should be noted, is a sixty year old man in real life. To cover this in the film, the Arnold robot has also aged. So robots age now. This little twist in the rules of robotics would make Isaac Asimov’s giant side burns retroactively fall off of his face. It makes no sense, but hey, at least we got Arnold back. Right? You know: the Guy that always comes back (pun not intended) for all these shitty movies. Surely his presence is need to make these sequels work.
Anyway, back to the trailer: Reese and company do some car-chasey things as they run from the new T-1000, who I forgot is also a cop, because this movie can’t let you forget for a second about T2. Trailers have to show us the entire film these days, so we see that Sarah Connor ends up in a hospital and is confronted by her future son. A future son who hasn’t been born, or even conceived at this point, so how she recognizes him is anyone’s guess.
Here is the point where a shaky trailer totally falls off the track, explodes, destroys all other trains, and let’s just say the entire world trains occupy. We find out that future John Connor is, in fact, some kinda robot-human hybrid that now is trying to kill Sarah Connor and her amazing friends. Please hold down your gasps; you’ll scare people in your immediate vicinity.
Normally, when a well-established hero of your franchise does something as significant as turn into the villain of your movie, you keep that out of the trailer. Best to not show too much of your hand, and spoil the fun of your intended audience. Right?
Well, fuck you Grandpa, not this movie! Here’s your big twist! Fuck, isn’t this incredible?!? I’ve heard a lot of people say this is due to the fact that the film has another ace up it’s sleeve, and this is just a red herring. This may be true but I have such a hard time believing it. No, this is not the clever action of a smart film maker; this is a desperate attempt to shock people into seeing a movie that no one wanted in the first place. There’s some more crap in the trailer of RoboConnor fighting Reese, and him going from full robot mode, back to human mode in an effect that looked better in 1991.
Also there’s a scene where old Arnold fights CGI young Arnold in a sequence you know is going to look like pure Skynuts.
Don’t worry: Arnold also says “I’ll be back.” Then the trailer ends, and I wonder how long before this movie comes and goes, and we’ll have to endure yet another Terminator movie
Terminator : REjuvination
Terminator : EXcellerator
Terminator : OMGSKYNETZ
Fuck this movie hard. Let it die with some dignity.
Terminator NeonGenesisEvangelion-o gets a HARD PASS.