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Terminator Salvation - Movie Review

Contributor:
Julie Gray
Julie Gray

I took a look at Terminator Salvation way back in March and I wasn't completely confident that new director McG could pull it off. But after seeing the movie last week, I have to say that he did a reasonably good job. So for anyone wondering whether or not to fork out the $15.50 to see it at the movie theatre, here's a breakdown for you (with possible spoilers):

What's good about it?

Despite Christian Bale attracting a fair bit of controversy over his role in this movie (with some critics harping on about his voice in T4), I stand by him on this one. He did a good job of portraying the rebel resistance leader John Connor and I really couldn't see how his voice had anything at all to do with his ability to nail the role.

Newcomer Sam Worthington who plays the cyborg Marcus was also good as supporting actor alongside Bale as was rising star Anton Yelchin from Star Trek as the young Kyle Reese.

 The special effects were fantastic and probably one of the highlights of the movie for me. In particular, the brand new Terminator models and theTerminator motorbikes - seriously, pretty kick ass. The action sequences were fast-paced and exciting although the movie could have done with more fight sequences.

The integration of material from the previous movies was also pretty good - I loved the CGI work on Arnie's Terminator and was actually expecting that to really fail... miserably. But it didn't which was all good.

What's bad about it?

The use of unnecessary characters in the movie kind of bugged me. An example of this - the mute girl named 'Star' that hangs around with Kyle Reese I mean, why? If you remove her character from the movie, you wouldn't miss a thing... really.

The 'Hyrdrobot' Terminator kinda made me cringe a little. It reminded me way too much of a similar looking machine in Transformers. Been there, done that.

The storyline didn't feel as emotionally charged as the previous movies. The struggle for survival between man and machine was dutifully represented but the whole 'human' element of the storyline seemed a little absent from Terminator Salvation.

Summary

In all, the movie wasn't bad. I think McG paid enough attention to the previous movies and did a reasonable job of staying as true to the original Terminator as possible whilst challenging the franchise by introducing new elements and characters. Could James Cameron have done a better job? Perhaps. I think James Cameron captured alot more of the human story element than McG did in Terminator Salvation but I think it's entertaining enough to see at the movies rather than on DVD in a few months.

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