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Saturday, May 23, 2009

Terminator Salvation

Terminator Salvation

Terminator Salvation


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Starring: Christian Bale ... John Connor

Sam Worthington ... Marcus Wright

Moon Bloodgood ... Blair Williams

Helena Bonham Carter ... Dr. Serena Kogan

Anton Yelchin ... Kyle Reese

Jadagrace ... Star

Bryce Dallas Howard ... Kate Connor

Common ... Barnes

Jane Alexander ... Virginia

Michael Ironside ... General Ashdown

Ivan G'Vera ... General Losenko

Chris Browning ... Morrison

Dorian Nkono ... David

Beth Bailey ... Lisa

Victor J. Ho ... Mark (as Victor Ho)

Synopsis: Set in post-apocalyptic 2018, John Connor is the man fated to lead the human resistance against Skynet and its army of Terminators. But the future Connor was raised to believe in is altered in part by the appearance of Marcus Wright, a stranger whose last memory is of being on death row. Connor must decide whether Marcus has been sent from the future, or rescued from the past. As Skynet prepares its final onslaught, Connor and Marcus both embark on an odyssey that takes them into the heart of Skynet’s operations, where they uncover the terrible secret behind the possible annihilation of mankind. Written by Warner Bros. Pictures

Review: by: Brendan Cullin

Terminator Salvation takes us to the year 2018, in the years after Judgement Day, when the robots have taken over the world. An army of Terminators, controlled by the artificial network Skynet, roam the earth, kidnapping and/or killing all humans in sight. Many of the remaining human survivors have banded together to form the Resistance, a desperate group who relentlessly fight the seemingly indestructable machines. Among the survivors is John Connor (Christian Bale), a man whose life goal has always been to save humanity and stop the machines. Unfortunately for Connor, the human casualties just seem to be multiplying and he must find a way to stop Skynet as it continues to evolve and develop new tactics to destroy mankind once and for all. Terminator Salvation also stars Sam Worthington as an ex-con named Marcus Wright, as well as Anton Yelchin, Bryce Dallas Howard, Helena Bonham Carter and many more. As a sidenote, the T-800 that appears in the movie is actually played by a fellow named Roland Kickinger, not Arnie. Howard Stern fans may remember him from the short-lived TV series "Son of the Beach". It's scary how much he looked liked Arnie but it was not him, in case you are wondering.

I'm sure most movie fans are expecting the world of Terminator Salvation. How could you not? The first three movies were all simply oustanding and are movies many of us grew up knowing and loving. Well, I'm here to report that Salvation is a pretty damn good movie. In terms of action and special effects, it may rank up there as one of the best ever. Sam Worthington's portrayal of Marcus Wright was the performance that was head and shoulders above the other cast members. For all you hockey fans out there, I found the guy looks eerily like Sean Avery (and that's not a good thing - for Worthington). The movie moves at a good pace - it's actually surprisingly short, clocking in at slightly less than 2 hours but with all the fighting and explosions going on, there isn't too much time to sit back and relax. Some of the action scenes and battles between the Terminators and the humans are simply outstanding. For that, I commend the movie-makers.

Unfortunately, what this movie lacks is the story and easy feeling of at least two of the three Terminator movies. Sure the first Terminator movie was very serious, violent and definitely not chock full of laughs - Salvation really has the same somber type of feeling of the first movie. But those second two movies made Arnie's Terminator such a likeable and pretty damn funny cyborg and this has a lot to do with what made both of those movies a hit. Salvation, on the other hand,is dark, violent and I'm pretty sure not one person in the entire movie cracks a smile, not even once. Is that a bad thing? I'm not sure if it should be or not but it would have been nice to have one wise-cracking asshole at least once or twice in the whole movie. Instead, you have a bunch of angry characters (and I suppose rightly so) that you have a really hard time connecting with and having any sort of feeling for any of them. And you also have Christian Bale, one of the greatest actors in the world today, and as good as he was, his talent just seemed kind of wasted in this movie. Don't get me wrong, the guy was good. But he could have had a moment or two in the movie to be "Christian Bale", if you know what I mean. He really didn't get that opportunity, at least not what I saw. In fact, I found the Sam Worthington character to be a lot more endearing and likeable and the guy was a convicted serial killer. Something just seemed to be missing with Bale's John Connor. As a side note, I really wonder what scene it was where Bale had his now infamous outburst...

Overall, I will say that I liked Terminator Salvation a lot, despite all the energy I used typing my complaints about the movie. I didn't love it like I wanted but I can't deny that it's a damn entertaining movie. I guess I was hoping that perhaps an army of human-looking T-800's would infiltrate the resistance or John Connor would have a big moment or Arnie or Linda Hamilton would make an appearance or I maybe would have cracked a smile or shed a tear but none of that happened. It just turned out to be a very loud but very action-packed movie and I guess that's good enough. Too bad it wasn't great enough.


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