Terminator Salvation (2009)

Posted: June 9, 2010 in Movie Reviews
Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Director: McG

Cast: Christian Bale, Sam Worthington and Anton Yelchin

Terminator Salvation is an all out action flick lacking soul due to its brittle storyline. But it will not satisfy the die-hard franchise fans looking for a worthy sequel to the first two films after the mishap that was Terminator 3. This installment of Terminator is all style and no substance.

The story opens in 2003 with death-row inmate, Marcus Wright (Worthington), agreeing to surrender his body to Cyberdyne systems for experimentation after execution. In 2018, the war between the small patches of human survivors and the machine army wages on. John Connor (Bale) is now the spiritual leader of the Resistance.  Following a botched mission Connor loses his entire unit and somehow activates Marcus. Later, Kyle Reese (Yelchin), the soon-to-be time traveling father of John Connor and some young man who inadvertently saves Marcus from an attack is abducted and taken to Skynet headquarters with thousands of other human slaves. Connor knows that he must rescue Reese. But as one would expect, not everyone and everything is, as it seems.

As a summer blockbuster, Terminator Salvation is striking. Director McG does a good job of keeping the action tight and breathtaking. There are several excellent action sequences in this film, and all of them are handled with panache. Probably the best thing about the film is the use of the variety of Terminators ranging from T-600s to T-800s.

But the big problem the film faces is that it lacks focus. The movie moves into a new area of storytelling in this universe created by James Cameron, and looks confused with the story it really wants to tell. The script is the real culprit here. Agreed, there are some mind blowing CGI action sequences in this film, which make it an out and out action blockbuster. But without a core storyline, everything falls flat.

Christian Bale is the biggest downer in this film. His role is not fleshed out enough to portray him as the messiah of the Resistance that he is supposed to be. He is just seen irritatingly shouting in the microphone transmitter throughout the film. On the plus side Sam Worthington does a wonderful job as Marcus Wright trying to find salvation and redeem himself.

The film does not resolve any issues brought up by the storyline, clearly keeping it’s options open for a sequel. But at the end of it all, you will realise that perhaps it is better if the franchise is terminated. Watch it for the action sequences.

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