Terminator Genysis Review
Matt - wrote on 08/18/15
Going into this movie felt more like an obligation than an exciting treat. Even before the reviews came out, I had a hunch that this movie was going to be bad. The trailers just made it look like a Hollywood cash-grab with very little effort. Looking back at the previous Terminator movies, I loved the first one, and I loved the second one with every fiber of my being. Terminator 2 is easily one of my favorite movies of all time. And to be honest, I enjoyed Terminator 3. It wasn't great, or even very good, but I had a good time with it. Then we got Terminator Salvation, which was shit. So how does Terminator Genisys stack up? It sucks.
I can't say I was disappointing since I didn't think this movie would be good in the first place, but my God did this movie just piss all over a once great franchise. Now, I loved The Terminator, but there were two problems I had with it. The first is that the romance between Kyle and Sarah. I mean, their relationship was believable and they had good chemistry, but their falling in love kind of came out of nowhere. The second issue is the time travel paradox with John Connor sending Kyle back in time to impregnate Sarah with him. I could write a whole novel about how that doesn't work. But these problems barely hurt the film because they are minor details that are far in the background. So then we get Terminator Genysis taking these problems and bringing them to the forefront.
Kyle and Sarah have zero chemistry in this film, to a point where it feels like the writers are trying to make them have no attraction to each other. But then all of a sudden they fall in love because it's "fate". Then at the end, they try to do some "Romeo & Juliet" bullshit that really doesn't make any sense. At least in the first movie, they didn't act like it was some forbidden love or anything and at least we believed that they developed some sort of strong relationship.
And then there's the plot; the stupid, convoluted, mind-numbing plot. First of all, if you're not familiar with the other movies, you'll have no idea what the hell is going on. I was banging my head against the wall with all these nonsensical and ridiculous twists and turns, and I've seen all the movies multiple times (except for Salvation, which I only saw once). And like I said, they bring the time-travel paradoxes to the forefront and trust me; there are a LOT of them. They will confuse the hell out of you and if you give enough thought and attention to the plot to follow it, you'll probably see a ton of them. Don't get me wrong, I'm all for complex plots, but some franchises work better with simpler plots. See, the first two Terminator movies had very simple plots, but they had complex characters and ideas which made them worthwhile in terms of substance. Here, the characters, especially Kyle Reese, don't do anything but explain the plot. Like 2/3 of this movie is plot exposition.
The movie is also tonally off. They get the urge to insert far too much comedy. The Terminator Franchise is not an action-comedy franchise. Even Salvation, which sucked, got the tone mostly right. The original movies had some jokes, but they were infrequent and subtle. They didn't start playing the Badboys song while Grandpa Schwarzenegger was smiling for his mugshot. I will admit that I did laugh at a few jokes, but that doesn't justify the off-putting comedy.
There is a ton more I could get into on why this movie is terrible, from John Connor's laughable Bond-Villain monologues to how badly they got Sarah Connor's character wrong, but I don't feel like there's any point. This movie just sucks. About the best thing I could say about it is that it was fun. I'm not saying the action scenes were anything special, but if you're not getting a migraine from the plot, you could have some fun watching it. Because I enjoyed it more than Salvation, I will say that it's a notch above the previous Terminator film. Still, this movie was just terrible. I'll give it a 2/10.