Wednesday, 23 September 2020
Terminator: Salvation
Written by Sandra Fitzpatrick   
Thursday, 28 May 2009 00:00

terminatorsalvationposterTo be honest, I’m not sure why Terminator: Salvation is getting the lukewarm reception that it is. Not having seen all of the Terminator movies, I’m not really up on the lore but I know that the series is famous for delivering a lot of action – and this installment does not fail on that front. As for the nitpicking fanboys, I can understand their disappointment in the story. With all the action, there isn’t much time to install a heart into this machine.

The movie starts off with a strong scene set in 2003 on death row, where inmate Marcus Wright (Sam Worthington) has been sentenced to death for murder. In a last ditch effort to give him a “second chance” he is visited by Cyberdyne scientist Serena Kogen (Helena Bonham Carter) who convinces him to donate his body to science. Flash forward to 2018 and Marcus wakes up in a very different world, forced into fight or flight mode by the evil machines that seem to have taken over the planet.

terminatorsalvationpic1On a more familiar series storyline, John Connor (Christian Bale) is fighting with the Resistance against Skynet. He is basically the pivotal character in the Terminator franchise, as the movies and the TV show are mostly about keeping a younger Connor alive until he is old enough to become the savior of humanity. That time is upon him and he is now a respected leader to a band of leftover humans trying their best to destroy Skynet and its army of cyborgs.

Bale as John Connor would seem to be the star of this film, and he does fine with what little meat he is given in this role. Overall Connor is a bit disappointing as a leader, just barking orders and listening to the instructional tapes his dead mother left him. At least he’s not afraid to get dirty when he has to. His wife Kate (Bryce Dallas Howard) is reduced to little more than a barefoot and pregnant homemaker, and there isn’t even mention of the very obvious baby belly that she’s toting around.

terminatorsalvationpic2The real star is Sam Worthington who seems to have come out of nowhere and steals the show. He may be playing a video-game stereotype but he infuses Marcus Wright with more depth of character than anyone else in this movie. Though he’s now part cyborg, his heart is still human and I think it’s the only one beating in this movie. His character progresses and he makes it believable.

Fans of the franchise will recognize an entire subplot involving John meeting his own father as a teenager and having to send him into the future in order to “complete the circle”. This is a little confusing and the character of Kyle Reese (Anton Yelchin) isn’t all that interesting.

By far the best thing about Terminator: Salvation is the special effects, and they are spectacular. Despite all the story flaws I may have listed here, the effects make this a movie worth seeing. It is full of non-stop action, very exciting and looks amazing. Definitely worthy of summer blockbuster status.