Thursday, July 9, 2015

Movie Review: Terminator: Genisys

Terminator: Genisys
directed byAlan Taylor
starring: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Jason Clarke, Emilia Clarke, Jai Courtney, J.K. Simmons, and more.

This movie was fantastic for many reasons. The title is nostalgic in that it reminds me of the Sega: Genesis gaming console I used to play with when I was a child. I loved playing Sonic the Hedgehog. Heheheh. I loved seeing the scenes from the first Terminator movie used in this film. Younger Arnold Schwarzenegger had to fight older Arnold Schwarzenegger. So cool. I'll get to why there were two Arnold Schwarzenegger's further in this post. I saw this movie in IMAX 3D, and aside from one or two scenes that had some cool special effects, I didn't care for the 3D. I most certainly would've enjoyed this movie even more if I saw it in 2D because it took a couple of minutes for my eyes to adjust to the screen, so I'd recommend to anyone else to see it in 2D.

The movie starts like it's the same Terminator plot that we all know. Skynet wants to kill all humans. They send a Terminator to the past to kill Sarah Conner. Sarah Conner hooks up with Kyle Reese from the future and gives birth to her son who will grow up to become the rebel leader that fights to bring down Skynet. There are instances where I really hate the use of time travel in a story, especially in comics where it can become over-used, but I like it in the Terminator series. What I really like about it is how the plot develops into a new story which grows as a reaction from the previous travels back in time. Kyle Reese thinks he's going back in time to protect Sarah Conner, but Sarah is the one who comes to his aid and helps to protect him. The helpless Sara doesn't exist anymore because someone previously sent the Arnold Schwarzenegger Terminator even further into the past in order to protect her. The biggest mystery to the plot was who sent him to the past when Sara was a little girl. That question wasn't answered in the movie. But anyways, that's why there are two Arnold Schwarzenegger Terminators. One from Sarah Conner's childhood, Pops, and the one sent by Skynet to kill Sarah Conner. There was also one of the liquid metal Terminators that was sent back in time to kill Kyle Reese there, too.

Like Kyle Reese, Sarah Conner faces new problems caused by the effects of time travel. In order to put a stop to Skynet, she wants to travel into the future to D-Day, the day when Skynet was launched and murdered millions of people, and put a stop to that. Because the past was altered already, that D-Day is no longer the same. In this current timeline, that day comes in 2017 when Genisys is activated. Genisys is Skynet. Genisys is an operating system that connects everything about a person online. It connects all of a person's social media accounts, their interests, their devices, their life, in a nutshell. It was cool to see how that part of the plot reflected how a lot of people are connected to the internet and computer systems in this current day and age. For as much as people continue to advance, so too will Skynet. Dramatic... and spooky.

The countdown for destroying Skynet seems to happen quickly but I like that fast pace. The point for the lead characters is to destroy Skynet and we don't need to spend a lot of time on seeing how they come up with a plan or bring together their weapons cache, etc. That scene with Pops and Reese competitively loading bullets was pretty funny though. The plan they come up with is all really simple, too. Just blow Skynet up. That'll take care of everything.

I liked the casting for this movie. I liked the plot. We don't see Sarah hook up with Reese in this movie which would really change their future if no baby boy is born, but considering how she gives Reese a big ol' smooch at the end of the movie, it isn't that far of a stretch to imagine them getting together down the road. It was a surprisingly calm and happy ending for the movie. If you haven't seen this movie yet, when you go see it be sure to sit through the credits. There's a scene at the end that I completely missed because I thought the movie was over and got up and left once the credits started to roll. The scene supposedly adds a bit more intrigue and leaves the plot open for another possible sequel. Nevertheless, this was a fun and entertaining movie. Seeing Arnold Schwarzenegger produce a forced smile was hilarious each and every time. I give this movie 4.5 out of 5 stars.

-O. Pelaez

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