Sunday, May 24, 2009

Review: Terminator Salvation

In my continued efforts to turn this into a movie review site, here's my thoughts on Terminator Salvation.

Having only recently watched the original 2 terminators (Terminator & T2-Judgment Day), its subsequent tag-along T3-Rise of the Machines, I am pretty fresh on my terminator films. As a rough sketch of the past films, Robots take over earth, and send robots back to prevent a man, John Conor, from being born. The second and third films is about the humans trying to prevent the creation of a Sentient computer system, Skynet. They win once, Skynet wins in T3 and nukes all of mankind to assure its survival.

Salvation picks up several years after 'Judgment Day/Apocalypse', and the Humans have formed a resistance to fight for their survival. John Conor is seen as a prophet of sorts, the man destined to wrest control of earth from Skynet and return it to mankind. But something new is happening, Skynet is capturing humans to turn them into the Robots, and in turn infiltrate and destroy the Resistance. The story revolves around two characters, John Conor and Marcos. Marcos is an artificial creation, not human but with the firm belief that he is, in fact, a human.

With an avalanche of action, bedazzling special effects that are inextricable from reality, an A-List lead actor, and a solid Science Fiction foundation, this film was poised to be one of the best science fiction films in years. It even gets many little things right, be it camera angles, story development, or the Unix programming used for the opening credits. However, it fails at one crucial point.

The driving force behind humanities struggle for survival, the simple fact that makes mankind different from the machines we created, is emotions. The heart, the will to survive, the sacrifice that man can make even when logical algorithms would dictate it impossible, this is what separates the Man from the Machine. Yet Christian Bale's character seldom shows emotion, even in moments despair, wrath, acceptance, love, or joy. Much like Batman: The Dark Knight, Bale is a chalkboard that refuses to be drawn upon, a blank slate of darkness that is hard, cold, and immovable. Even the robotic creation Marcos has more emotion.

Still, its an enjoyable ride. No star Trek, and certainly better then Wolverine, but much less then it could have been.

5/10, I won't be buying the DVD

1 comment:

KnightWing said...

Connor has two Ns. Marcus has a U in it.
[/grammar rant over]

I think Bale did great in TDK (especially the post-Racheldeath scenes), but he wasn't given anything to do in this movie other than to stand there and yell at everything.

But yeah, that's the general consensus on the film: good action, amazing effects, no character. Overall: good, but not great.