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Terminator Salvation(2009)

Cinematic Review
Pointless plot that merely serves as a vehicle for over-the-top action

My Personal Review
Super cool action scenes


As entertainment goes, this is it. Great special effects, well crafted action sequences, and explosions aplenty (everything explodes). Movies like this have their place in everyone's collection. But if you're looking for an amazing plot with clever references to the past ‘Terminator’s and deep exploration of human nature, you will not find it here. The plot for this film is akin to such plots as ‘Matrix Reloaded’; find the key maker and fight everything on the way. Again, the movie is very entertaining, but with sizable plot holes in the little plot it has, it's not much more than a 'cool' movie.


Though the movie is really nothing more than a series of action sequences, it does not suffer from the 'action boredom' oxymoron that some movies fall into. This is the scenario when a movie has 20 action sequences, but no creativity. So you are stuck after 30 minutes watching the same exact fight sequences over and over with different people and maybe different weapons. Fortunately this movie is not one of those movies. Each action scene is staged very differently with no common formula (except explosions). This keeps the watcher entertained for the entire movie. And that’s really all I was asking for from a movie about a war between humans and robots.

The plot

After three time travel movies, we finally join John Connor (Bale) in the apocalyptic future that his mother had warned us about. Though I would love to elaborate on the intricacies of the movie’s story, it really comes down to this: John wants to destroy robots, so he does for 2 hours. The most substantial part of this story being found in a character named Marcus Wright (Worthington), who is a cyborg that believes itself to be human. But this character arc is inconsequential to the film, which essentially makes it a space filler.

Reasons to see it

It has been a while since I’ve seen action so good. McG may not know much about crafting a story, but he sure does make one heck of a roller coaster. I would even argue, judging by the number of things that blow up, that McG has been taking lessons from Michael Bay ('Armageddon'). If you enjoy action films, I promise you without doubt that you will love this one.

Along these lines, the Special effects are great. Though the film is ridden with CGI from opening to closing, it rarely ever pulls you out of the action by being unconvincing. It is amazing to think how far animation has come since T:2, which was cutting edge 18 years ago.

Where did this Sam Worthington guy come from? What a phenomenal actor, delivering every line with such credibility. Though I believe his character served no functional purpose in the story, he was by far one of the best aspects of the movie. In fact, he often upstages the star and makes you wonder why Bale is so revered. Fortunately we will get to see a lot more of him in upcoming films ('Avatar' and 'Clash of the Titans').

The Negatives

If you sit back to think about the plot long enough, you will realize that many aspects don’t make sense. Of course, you could just not think about it too hard and walk away entertained. But for those who take their plot-lines seriously, you are guaranteed to notice the faults, major faults.

Another serious flaw of the flim is that it fails to make you care about...anyone. The only reason you will care whether the humans win or die is because you are human and feel a brother-hood to the people on screen. With a lack of characters that display emotion or personality, the director is relying on the humanity of the audience to make you invested in the people on screen. To be honest, as every action scene unfolded, I never found myself worried that the humans might lose. So what if the robots won, I was indifferent either way.

In summary…

…The movie is a must see action flick for those who love action of any kind. But if action isn’t your thing, this movie holds no value for you.

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