‘Terminator Genisys’ proves the franchise is old but not obsolete

In case anyone has noticed, Hollywood seems to be going through a nostalgia phase right now by rebooting or retooling classic franchises from the seventies and eighties for a new generation to enjoy. While some directors wont let their franchises be tampered with (Thank you, Robert Zemeckis!), others are ready to be re-branded for a younger generation to enjoy and original fans to judge.

Terminator Genisys is the fifth installment in the Terminator film series where John Connor (Jason Clarke) launches a final offensive against Skynet in the year 2029. When he uncovers Skynet’s time travel plot, he sends Kyle Reese (Jai Courtney) back in time to save his mother, Sarah Connor (Emilia Clarke), in the year 1984. However, when Kyle reaches his destination, he learns everything is not how it is supposed to be.

While I wasn’t born when the first Terminator film debuted  in 1984 but I’ve watched them all, including the god-awful Terminator Salvation. I will say that this movie is not as bad as that one was but I will say that it’s…okay. Not a “So-awesome-I-have-to-see-it-again” but not “Why-did-I-waste-my-money-and-time-on-IMAX 3D” but just okay. The special effects were incredible , especially with the role that Jason Clarke played in the Hybrid Terminator (if you have seen that spoiler-worthy preview, you know what I’m talking about). As far as the actors, Jai Courtney could have been a lot better with his tough outside, soldier-in-love Kyle Reese. Emilia Clarke (Game of Thrones) did a respectable job as the new Sarah Connor but I still expected to see a dragon pop out somewhere.

I would say the best part would be the original Terminator himself, Arnold Schwarznegger. He brought the film back to what made the franchise work with the man in the machine. Although this sub-plot is more scene in the first two sequels, Arnold brought it back and it looked like he truly had fun with this role once again. Jokes about his age and the franchise, in connection, was entertaining to poke fun at, especially once the silver-haired Terminator arrived later on in the movie.

Overall, the movie lost a bit of power going towards the end but the climatic battle was worth it. This film does get bogged down in its complicated timeline and mythology. While this film had the opportunity to fix what Salvation left behind of the series with a good reboot akin to the new Star Trek films or resetting the time like X-Men: Days of Future Past, the film remains just…okay.

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