Terminator Genisys: like the band, they should probably stop

Posted on 10 July 2015
By James Burcher
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There have been many-a review on the Internet heavily criticising Terminator: Genisys, and some might argue with good reason. Considering the cult status and general praise of the first two movies, it’s considered a shame that the series has started messing around with the storylines of said classic movies.

Unlike the previous two movies; Rise of the Machines and Salvation, this film actually goes back to 1984 and makes an attempt to drag the original movie into the 21st century and the new timelines of the series. With very mixed results.

I agree that this film is plothole central and is monumentally confusing, but the Terminator series is built on plotholes and ridiculous storylines- the whole premise is based in absurdity from the start.

Now I’m not going to tell you to leave your brain at the door like lots of other patronising reviewers, that is a poor excuse for poor films, but when your film involves time travel and killer robots hell bent on destruction, then suspension of disbelief must be amplified somewhat.

With that out of the way, I must say, I enjoyed this movie at the time and upon leaving the cinema, felt that it wasn’t as bad as expected and people are maybe being overly critical. Upon sitting down to write this review however, I can barely recall anything memorable from the movie apart from a few re-hashing of classic lines, and Arnold’s goofy smile.

Emila Clarke gives a decent performance as Sarah Connor but she’s too far away from the timid but entirely believable Linda Hamilton of the first film and it’s quite jarring at times. I know that’s what they where going for, but it’s very difficult to even call them the same character anymore, so much has changed.

Jai Courtney continues to land leading roles despite having the personality traits of a cooked salmon and the acting ability of reluctant 6 year old in a school Nativity, and his Kyle Rees isn’t even close to that of the first film and is bordering on insulting at times. My personal pick would’ve been Aaron Paul, not only is he a much, much better actor, he even looks like Michael Biehn!

Arnold is of course back and he is absolutely the best part of the film, his wit and charm is on display for all to see and when he isn’t bogged down with Cyberdine jargon lines, he’s a joy to watch and it’s just great to see him on screen as a T-800 again.

The film is a nod to T1 and T2, and whilst it’s very hit and miss, what with it’s back-tracking of the first two stories and ret-conning Rise of the Machines and Salvation, it makes for a seriously complicated and convoluted storyline.

As a Terminator movie, this will not please many at all. As an action movie, it does just enough to satisfy the general audience and make it an entertaining enough popcorn flick where someone can enjoy explosions and Arnold Schwarzenegger being goofy for 2 hours.