I read an article about two years ago that claimed there was talk about making a fifth installment in the sci-fi franchise. The article didn’t state at the time if this was a reboot (another sequel) or a remake of the first James Cameron directed classic. I posted an article about it at the time stating I didn’t see a need for another sequel, as “Rise of the Machines” and “Salvation” didn’t really deliver for me. And I didn’t think the original could be improved upon in any great way.
After viewing ‘Genisys’ my theories were correct, and there didn’t seem to be a need for this fifth installment. Don’t get me wrong. I thought it had somewhat of an interesting premise and it played with alternate timelines and took time travel to a different level (and not necessarily a good one). View the trailer below.
It begins with a narration of how the world was before Judgment Day and how it is after. This leads to a battle where the resistance attacks Skynet on the night Skynet sends back the T-800 (or Cyberdyne Systems model number 101…aka Arnold Schwarzenegger) to 1984 to kill Sarah Connor in an attempt to prohibit John Connor, the leader of the resistance, from being born. A trusted soldier and friend to John, Kyle Reese (Jai Courtney) volunteers to go back to protect her. This is where it gets a little convoluted and confusing. Without bogging you down with all the time travel and alternate timelines, I’ll just say it didn’t quite work for me. It left me with more questions than answers. And, needless to say they left the film open for possible sequels, with an end of credits scene (much like Marvel has done with their films). And I don’t know how you can really top the near masterpieces that were ‘The Terminator’ and ‘Terminator 2: Judgment Day.’
Some of the acting was decent but could have been better. Schwarzenegger was decent and delivered some of his deadpan funny lines and showed he can still create some action. I thought Courtney delivered a somewhat stiff portrayal of Kyle Reese. It was much different than the great performance Michael Biehn portrayed in 1984. Emilia Clarke played the young Sarah Connor in 1984 and played it with some strength. John Connor was portrayed by Jason Clarke and seemed to shine in the role (considering there was only one other adult John Connor played in the franchise – Christian Bale).
The film moved along at a decent pace for the action and the action, fights and chase sequences provided entertainment and some excitement. One chase/action sequence involved a speeding bus and then flipping said bus to where it crashes and ends up dangling from a bridge. The sequence was thrilling to an extent, but still lacked that Cameron-esque excitement. Then there was an insane helicopter chase through the sky and city of San Francisco. While it had its moments, it again lacked some of the action that Cameron delivered.
I don’t feel the film delivered a reason for its existence. It seemed at times they were almost disregarding the first two films and then at the same time referencing the first classic with recreations of the some of the most iconic moments and timeline from the first ‘Terminator.’
The film was released by Paramount and directed by Alan Taylor, who most recently directed the second ‘Thor’ film from Marvel. Laeta Kalogridis and Patrick Lussier wrote the script based on the characters created by Cameron and Gale Anne Hurd. It runs 126 minutes and is rated PG-13.