Terminator: Genisys

At the Movies Blog

At least he won’t “be back” in politics.

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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.

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