The Terminator franchise is one of my favorite movie franchises of all time. (It’s also the main reason why I fear robots so much). So when I heard that they were making another trilogy set after Judgment Day, I got excited. Just like Star Wars, and Indiana Jones, and Die Hard, I was getting a chance to see a new classic in theaters. Also just like those three movies Salvation is the 4th installment of a previously successful trilogy, and if the past is any indication, 4th installments are usually not that great. I was skeptical though the trailers looked good, and it kept the T2 music, so who knows. Well, I know now, and I am not ecstatic, but I am pleased.
Terminator Salvation was faced with a huge mission, to keep to the roots of The Terminator history, and to prove what we already knew (Kind of like Star Wars Episode III in a way, it had to show how Anakin became Lord Vader, and make up for the horribleness of Episode II.). T3 showed that judgment day happens, and sure, it may share alot in common with T2, but it was still a good action movie. That being said, Salvation is not so much an action movie as a War movie. Sure there is action involved, but it’s more about war, and with war comes sad, depressing moments. So here’s my review of what I thought about it. It’s after the click, cause it’s full of spoilers see, I’m being nice today.
There was things wrong with Terminator Salvation, but, there was more things right with it I think. There was some bad editing, and some bad acting, and while you can’t ignore the editing, at least the bad acting wasn’t everyone – mainly the Tec-Com Command guys.
On that note, I did not like how there was a command structure above Connor, in all the flash-forwards, and descriptions of the future from the previous 3 films, John Connor is the leader of the human resistance. While the resistance listens to him via FDR type radio broadcasts, he is not technically their leader, I did not like that. Although, with the destruction of the sub that had the high command, maybe he will become their leader now, I hope so anyway.
Taking from the above, it is inevitable that with the events of each previous Terminator film, the timeline was changed slightly(I am completely ignoring The Sarah Connor Chronicles, as you should too, they fucked up the timeline), so facts that the original Kyle Reese gave Sarah in Terminator would have changed alittle (or would they not? because he was a different person already?(I am not going into the paradoxes of time travel here, chris would hurt me)). Another thing about the future that’s different was the battlefields of human skulls that naked terminators walk across (Aren’t those naked Terminators (aka the metal endo-skeletons) nice looking?!, I think so, and I’m scared to death of them). Next up, why is it so sunny out? We know that there was a nuclear war, so it should be nuclear winter, or at least not as clear day sunny as it was in the movies. Although this can be explained by saying all the flash-forwards were in the evening, but that’s just cheating your way to an answer if you ask me.
Why did John Connor get stabbed? That was dumb. Why still did the T-800 walk out of the molten metal that fell on him? As we clearly saw in T2, molten metal can kill terminators, this is major contradiction and I don’t like it.
What was with the giant walking harvester terminator? What was the point of that? Pointless chase scenes, eh. That stupid girl, what was her deal, she didn’t ruin the movie, but she didn’t add anything to it either.
Marcus Wright was an interesting addition, although I don’t really know why they needed it? I guess they just need a new and improved Terminator for each film. I don’t get why though when these films are set in the future, but in the past of the timeline there is this advanced terminator, but it’s made to seem like he was a prototype for the T-800 series, except, if he was a prototype, why change the body features? Unless it’s because the resistance already knows what Wright looks like, so they need someone new.
The thing that kept the movie together in my mind was that in the end, it was about killing John Connor. That’s it, that’s all that was required, the rest of the movie was just a set up to kill John Connor, just like the previous 3 films, John Connor was seen as a threat, and must be terminated. What I don’t get is how does Skynet have a record of the future past events where it sends Terminators back in time to try and kill Connor and failed? It shouldn’t should it? Unless of course it has records of some of it it hidden in the computers of Cyberdyne, I guess that’s possible.
Taking this as a stepping stone, I hope that the next film shows Skynet sending back either the original Terminator, or the T-1000, (I would so love a Robert Patrick cameo).
Overall I thought that the movie was better then what the reviewers thought of it. It was a war movie, and it seems that most of the reviewers thought it was supposed to be a Terminator movie (while it is, it still is about a war at heart). At least it didn’t fuck up the timeline like the TV series did, I mean really, Sara Connor lives, another Terminator is sent back in time to protect them forever, and she lets it, that was ridiculous, and you know it, and that’s probably why people stopped watching it, that’s why I did.
Does Salvation live up to it’s sequels, yes. Does it surpass them, eh, not really. Besides the fact that absolutly nothing will ever top Terminator 2 in terms od sequel quality, T3 was good (I know T3 gets a bad rep in the world, but I put my full backing behind it as a film), and so was Salvation. It could be because I am biased and I love the franchise so much, but I think that unlike some other 4th movie instalments, Salvation is just what I expected – a film about the Human/Machine war, and the ultimate protection of the fate of John Connor.