Movie Review - Terminator:Genisys

The curse of movie sequels is that where the franchise is a box office success, studio honchos will milk the franchise for every single dollar by churning out sequels, prequels, remakes and remakes of remakes until you get to a point where you ask; was there really any need for that installment? The 4th installment of the Die Hard franchise readily comes to mind.

But with Terminator:Genisys, you hope it’d be different. Especially as the last 2 sequels in the franchise sucked with Rise of the Machines being worse and Salvation being fairly watchable with a kick ass female lead (which is critical to the franchise) in Moon Bloodgood.

But then, this is the Terminator franchise. The 1984 original Terminator is a cult classic and arguably the vehicle that launched James Cameron into the pantheon of Gods in Movie heaven, and cemented Arnold Schwarzenegger as an all-time action movie great. Terminator 2: Judgment Day is one of the few movies to break the curse of the sequel by being better than the original.

Despite early reviews suggesting otherwise, Genisys is pretty good. No, scratch that! Genisys is very good! It advances the franchise in ways 2003’s Rise of the Machines and 2009’s Salvation failed to do. It essentially ignored the last 2 installments and continues from where 1991’s judgment day stopped. As if pleading with the audience to forgive and forget the disappointments of Rise of the Machines and Salvation, it pays homage to the original Terminator and Judgment Day by reprising iconic scenes from them that made them such memorable hits.

The fact that the explanation of the quantum leap and nexus yada yada yada in Kyle Reese ‘ s time travel from the future back to 1984 needs an algorithm of its own for the audience to understand it doesn’t detract from the plausibility if you are truly a fan of the franchise. It didn’t make sense but it made sense!

Schwarzenegger ‘s aging T-800 series model was inimitably played by him with just the right amount of the robotic stiffness we’ve come to love. And the penile pun jab at Kyle Reese must be the first time a robot has ventured into that territory in movie history. No?

Emilia Clark ‘ s turn as Sarah Connor, while mildly watchable, didn’t reprise the kick ass intensity Linda Hamilton brought to it especially in Judgment Day. Even as a brunette and try as hard as I did, I couldn’t shake off images of Daenerys Targyrean from my mind watching her. It became even worse every time the name Kyle Reese was mentioned as it always sounded like Khaleesi!

Much like Clark, Jai Courtney failed to bring the intensity Michael Biehn brought to Kyle Reese in the original Terminator. His buff look to Biehn ‘s lean made it even more unconvincing. However, Lee Byung-Hun ‘s T-1000 was a fitting homage to Robert Patrick ‘ s intensity and lethal single mindedness that stole the show in Judgment Day!

The negative reviews by critics just show why you shouldn’t let reviews decide which movie to see. Genisys delivered and gives the franchise a a badly needed reboot, and justifies why 2 more sequels are in the works. Genisys is a fitting ‘I’ll be back” for the Terminator franchise! 7/10

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