“Old, but not obsolete.”
Terminator Genisys is the 5th film in the Terminator franchise and acts as more of a reboot than a sequel. It creates an alternate, parallel timeline to the one created by the previous films. It involves Kyle Reese (Jai Courtney) being sent back to protect Sarah Connor (Emilia Clarke) from a terminator, similar to the first movie. However, Arnold Schwarzenegger’s terminator has been reprogrammed to protect Sarah Connor and has since she was a child. Together, the three of them team up to stop Skynet from coming online, this time in the form of an app designed to connect everyone’s devices, called Genisys. The plot is more complex and complicated than that, but is hard to talk about without spoiling.
The opening line is one that was repeated a couple times throughout the movie. And after watching it, I have to say that line is a good description of not only Arnold Schwarzenegger, but of the Terminator franchise itself. Because this movie actually ended up being much more enjoyable that I thought it would be. It isn’t great, but based on the trailers I thought it was going to be terrible. I liked the direction the movie took. The alternate timeline worked for me and led to some great scenes that were both throwbacks and changes to the original movies. I thought that idea was pretty cool and I was really into it most of the time. The plot is very complex but it never completely lost me like I kept expecting it to. Some of the special effects were pretty good and the action scenes were very entertaining. There are some great comedic moments as well. The movie also has a really good message about technology and the consequences being so wrapped up in our devices could have. Maybe not humanity being wiped out by robots, but societal consequences in general.
As good as I thought it was, I won’t claim this movie is without flaws, because it has many. Even though I followed the plot pretty much the whole time, it does get a bit confusing and I could see it losing people easily. As good as some of the special effects were, others were pretty bad. The acting was ok but not great. Emilia Clarke is decent as Sarah Connor but just isn’t as good as Linda Hamilton was. Arnold Schwarzenegger isn’t bad but it seemed like he was trying a little too hard. It was like he was trying to remember how he played the part before and just overdid it a bit. Jason Clarke is ok as John Connor. The worst was by far was Jai Courtney. Can we please stop casting this guy in stuff? He wasn’t quite John Mcclane’s son in A Good Day to Die Hard bad, but he is just so dry and boring to watch. Some of his scenes really took me out of it. I thought the twist that was revealed for whatever bizarre reason in the trailer worked in the movie, but I wish I hadn’t already known what it was (I won’t give it away here in case some of you have avoided the trailer). That would have helped it’s impact.
All in all, the movie is much better than expected. I enjoyed it and most of the plot points really worked for me. I like the direction it took and would be optimistic (albeit it cautiously so) about a sequel. It’s not a perfect movie and isn’t anywhere near as good as the first 2 movies. But it is entertaining and better than the 3rd and 4th movies, so Terminator Genisys gets a 3.5/5 from me.
I know based on other reviews I am one of the very few who liked this movie. Did any of you? If not what were your biggest issues with it? Let me know in the comments.
Check out my reviews of the other Terminator movies here.
Check out my top 10 Arnold Schwarzenegger list here.