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Terminator: Genisys

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At least he won't "be back" in politics.

Here’s a good way to describe Terminator: Genisys. I’ll use the band Genesis. You may have liked them when they first came out. Their first albums with Peter Gabriel…the talented drumming of Phil Collins, Mike Rutherford on guitar. You think back to the ‘80s, and some of those songs with Collins fronting the band you remembered enjoying, so you buy the CD “Genesis Greatest Hits.” You put it in the stereo and soon wonder why you had to revisit something you got enough of 25 years ago.

Terminator: Genisys is a “greatest hits.” We see all the stuff we thought was so cool in the first and second Terminator movies: naked time travelers, silver liquid molding into terminators. Sure, the CGI is great…but we didn’t need to reboot this franchise.

I remember very little about Terminator 3, and never saw Terminator Salvation (although everyone would agree the best thing to come out of that was Christian Bale’s angry rant).

It doesn’t matter if younger fans are familiar with those movies, as they give you a recap of those; although strangely enough, the movie doesn’t even follow those things.

Nothing about this movie makes sense logically. Now, I gave Terminator 2 a pass with some logic flaws, because the cop villain was so much fun as he shape-shifted. When this movie gives us another cop doing similar facial expressions (despite the fact that he’s Asian, not Caucasian)…I thought about the same thing I wondered with that character the first time. Why don’t those terminators run full speed at their target with those sharp sword arms? Instead, they slowly walk around a store looking for their victims. That creates suspense for the audience, but makes very little sense when they start running full speed after a car.

Yes, Arnold Schwarzenegger returns and yes, he has a lot of catch phrases. Some of them were funny, a few of them recycled (did we really need to hear “I’ll be back” again?).

He has a few humorous scenes and is rather charming as the protective, older terminator called “Pops” but, how many times do we need to see him fighting other terminators? Sure, the head-butting sound effects are cool, but these fight scenes all get so repetitive.

And the whole concept of machines taking over, and computer programs that need to stop, robots that can’t be killed…enough already!!!

Oh, and let’s not even start with the time travel flaws this movie has. Studios should just stop green lighting any movie that has a time travel premise in it.

The supporting cast seems a bit wooden. That stands out a bit more because we remember how bad-ass Linda Hamilton was in the role of Sarah Connor.

J.K. Simmons has a few fun scenes as a detective that is on to the terminators. It’s a shame that character never really went anywhere. He’s there to be one of many people giving you exposition.

The car chases were exhilarating. A helicopter chase has some awfully bad CGI, but all the other explosions and fights were done well. The problem is that you just stop caring.

If you like the idea of watching things explode…endoskeletons of robots coming out of fire balls…school buses flipping pver…and Schwarzenegger awkwardly smiling (those scenes are actually funny)…this is the movie for you.

Everyone else will be entertained enough, and glad they got out of the humidity and into a cool theatre.

It gets 2 stars out of 5.

7 comments

  • bob pearl

    Well this is scary for me as there is nothing I can add to this as you nailed it buddy. I was fun to watch and a few chuckles but not really much you haven’t see already so unless I missed something it’s the old been there done that movie but in 3D. Yes many will love it as its like going to the beach. You’ve been there over and over again for years but you just can’t stop going so as long as there is a terminator there will be a big crowd to watch it. I also would give it a 2 and I’m glad I saw it the same time Josh did as I love the free pre screenings as how can you not like that,lol

  • James

    So, shall we talk of cynical brained fool’s? The author was not a quality representation of movie attendees. His premise that the terminator cop in t2 should have been perhaps slashing up and running 40 mph in an arcade is flawed. The machine is programmed to be discrete, keeping it’s humanoid appearances, perhaps to keep the public from being concerned that a killer robot is on the loose. It could result in signer never being built. It’s called covert ops. Now onto that I’ll be back… This classic line was actually not used in the last release. Nor were austalivista baby. Even when their monumental phrases not just for the terminator franchise, but for Arnold himself. Perhaps someone who has seen the entire series, would understand the complex plot twists that are created due to temporal conflicts. Time travel is confusing, so I can see how a simple minded author could find the film rather mayhem laden with a convoluted excuse for a store line. When in reality, time travel and multiple failed murder attempts In the past cause a twisted story line laden with detail, and scientific backing. Perhaps the physics of paradox outcomes eludes you just as John Connor eludes the t800. Now into the issue you have with a movie based in physics programming, and advanced robotics… Our ever evolving world is in a technological age of advanced robotics, computer viruses, hackers, and weaponized military drones, something that inspires theories if it all went wrong, thanks to some single line of code being wrong. Anyhow, Somehow sitting here with my many certificates in film and cinematography hanging on the walls, my bachelors degree in ai design, and my bachelors in computer animation simulations framed on my desk next to my flat screen, I cannot help but feel the writer is less than adequate, and perhaps someone more suitable should be found, such as perhaps myself. My review of this review is honestly more well conceived, and assembled than the original author’s work, and lack of research.

  • Josh Board

    JAMES…at first I thought you may have had a few decent points. The one about the terminator machines not wanting to be discovered and “acting” human. Problem with that is, in this latest movie, and the second, the machine is walking slowly through an EMPTY STORE (in this movie, it’s a sporting goods place). So, there’s no reason to “act” normal. You just run full speed with those knife arms until she’s dead. Oh, and something I always wondered…why go back and try to kill Sarah Connor at that age? I’m guessing it would be easier to kill her when she’s 8-years-old, but hey….then you don’t have a sexy heroine, do ya? Anyway, since I don’t have all the fancy certificates you have on your walls, and you’re obviously a lot smarter than I….I thought I’d show you a great story that Cracked.com ran when Terminator Salvation came out. They bring up all the flaws, and they haven’t even seen this movie yet!!!!

  • Josh Board

    5 Reasons The Terminator Franchise Makes No Goddamn Sense
    By Joe Oliveto May 20, 2009

    With the release of Terminator Salvation (aka Terminator With Batman and Transformers!) we’d like to take a closer look at the franchise that has explored such pressing issues as our dependence on machines, what it means to be human and how utterly incredible it would be if Robert Patrick could turn his arm into a fucking knife.
    However, in our exploration of this series, we have come across a few gaps in logic, which we felt compelled to share with you. Why? Because we don’t feel pity, or remorse, or fear, and we absolutely will not stop, ever, until every movie you have ever loved is ruined.
    DADDY ISSUES AND THE PARADOX…..
    If you’ve found your way to this article, odds are you remember The Terminator, but let’s refresh some key plot points. In the mysterious and distant future–1997, to be exact–Skynet, a highly-advanced artificial intelligence, is introduced to the world. Humans decide to hand over all military control to this system because in the Terminator universe the people have not seen The Terminator.
    Decades later, the humans are at war with the robots and a brave warrior named John Connor takes charge and turns the tide. The machines strike back by sending the Governor of California back to the 80s to kill Connor’s mom before he’s born. The humans send Michael Biehn back to protect her.
    Along the way, he makes it part of his mission to protect her vagina from not having his penis in it. And that, readers, is where everything in the space-time continuum gets “iffy.”
    As it turns out, when Michael Biehn and Linda Hamilton sleep together, they conceive John Connor. And, as we learn in Terminator 2: Judgment Day, when the Terminator is destroyed in the first film, the microchip in its skull survives, falls into the hands of computer company Cyberdyne Systems, and allows for the creation of Skynet in the first place.
    Therefore, the only reason either John Connor or the machines exist is because the Terminator went back in time, and the only reason the Terminator went back in time is because the machines and John Connor exist. Get it?
    Oh, and John Connor and our heroes spend the last act of the second movie trying to prevent said war, meaning John Connor is trying to prevent his own existence, by eliminating the reason for his dad to travel back in time to conceive him. And, if he does prevent his own existence, well, he certainly won’t be around to prevent the war thus prevent his existence and…
    Well, you get the idea.
    IF AT FIRST YOU DON’T SUCCEED….
    So, we’ve established that the first Terminator failed and was in fact killed by a waitress. Consider how embarrassing that must have been for it.
    But neither Skynet or Hollywood give up on good ideas, they merely try them again when the technology improves. Hence Terminator 2, in which a highly-advanced liquid metal Terminator is sent back again, only this time it’s the 90s and the target, being young John Connor, can barely tie his shoes.

    Luckily, the original T-800, his balls now safely removed, is sent back to protect John after being reprogrammed by him in the future. They meet up with Linda Hamilton and once again, our heroes thwart the bad guy, despite his obvious technological advantage. Did we mention he can turn his arm into a knife? C’mon.
    The third time around, Skynet throws a little something called the T-X John Connor’s way.
    The T-X has a liquid metal substance for skin, futuristic weapons built into its endoskeleton, and can make its breasts grow at will. Yet, once again an outdated T-800, Nick Stahl and Claire Danes defeat this wonderful creation. Is your disbelief still suspended?
    If so, answer this for us: Can’t Skynet just keep on trying until it gets John Connor?
    We highly doubt that the time machine has an “only three assassination attempts per user” rule. And anyway, why do they keep on trying to attack John Connor at different periods in his existence anyway? Couldn’t they send the T-X back to the 80s to deal with Linda Hamilton again?
    Or even earlier? After all, why lose the element of surprise by traveling to a time when the targets know what they’re up against? It’d make a lot more sense to send the Terminators to earlier in the character’s lives, when they were still oblivious to the threat. Get Sarah Connor as an infant, damnit. Hell, even if it was just one day earlier than the first movie, it would still make all the difference in the world.
    Honestly, who programmed this shit?
    BREAKING THEIR OWN LAWS
    The Terminator series really only establishes two rules for its futuristic technology:
    1. The robots cannot show emotion;
    2. The time machine can’t transport non-living matter.
    First, the emotion thing. This one seems pretty easy to nail down, right (they’re fucking robots)? And it’s stated right in the second movie when Arnold says, “I know now why you cry, but it’s something I can never do” (though some students of the franchise speculate that was just Schwarzenegger thinking out loud on the set and the microphone happened to be on).
    So why then, at the end of that very film, does the T-1000 give us the world’s greatest “oh shit” face just moments before his destruction:
    And he’s not the only one. When the T-X discovers that she is on the trail of her main target John Connor, she displays an odd mix of excitement and what appears to be arousal, because hunting down the savior of mankind must be so damn hot.
    Come on, lady, your one job in this movie was to not act.
    And then there’s the non-living matter time machine issue. As Kyle Reese explains in the first film, no advanced weaponry can be brought back from the future because the time machine can only transmit living tissue. That’s why we had to tolerate naked Schwarzenegger ass for two films before somebody finally remembered to put a hot woman in the role.
    Now, technically, the first Terminator is a machine with living tissue layered over its endoskeleton, so it gets a pass, we guess. Enter the T-1000, the second film’s liquid metal Terminator that can take nearly any shape and recover from nearly any wound. Oh, and it can turn its arm into a knife.
    The problem is, this Terminator is composed entirely of liquid metal. No living tissue, no flesh, just 100% mimetic-poly alloy (thank you, James Cameron). That means, according to the rules clearly established in the first movie, it cannot travel back in time.
    But, it does. Same goes for the T-X in the third movie. That Terminator is liquid metal on top of a heavily armored endoskeleton. It shouldn’t be able to venture to the past either.
    Now, the whole point of adding that rule in the first movie was that it closed the “why don’t they just send back a nuclear bomb?” plot hole. Fine. But just to further piss all over that logic, we find out in the third film that, in fact, the T-800 has the equivalent of little nukes stored in its abdomen. That’s how he ultimately defeats the lady Terminator. So… why didn’t he use those against Sarah Connor in the first movie?

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