Trailers are an under-appreciated art form insofar that many times they’re seen as vehicles for showing footage, explaining films away, or showing their hand about what moviegoers can expect. Foreign, domestic, independent, big budget: I celebrate all levels of trailers and hopefully this column will satisfactorily give you a baseline of what beta wave I’m operating on, because what better way to hone your skills as a thoughtful moviegoer than by deconstructing these little pieces of advertising? Some of the best authors will tell you that writing a short story is a lot harder than writing a long one, that you have to weigh every sentence. What better medium to see how this theory plays itself out beyond that than with movie trailers?

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This Week in DVD & Blu-ray is a column that compiles all the latest info regarding new DVD and Blu-ray releases, sales, and exclusive deals from stores including Target, Best Buy and Fry’s.

Rent It

TERMINATOR SALVATION
There’s a certain expectation of quality that comes with viewing a sequel to an established franchise. In Terminator Salvation, the director of Charlie’s Angels joins forces with the screenwriters of Catwoman to remind us why those expectations usually result in the metaphorical equivalent of a grown man gleefully defecating all over our most cherished memories. It’s the type of film where it’s much easier to pinpoint what it does well, if only because it gets everything else so disastrously wrong. The positives can be counted on a single hand, with the action sequences being the primary standout—and the sole reason the film is being listed under the “Rent it” section. If you can separate yourself from the rest of the series, and view the film as no more than CGI-heavy eye candy and a compilation of Transformers-esque robotic mayhem, Terminator Salvation is watchable enough to please those undeterred by studio-manufactured Summer blockbuster silliness. The only other highlights worth mentioning are stars Sam Worthington and Anton Yelchin, who manage to do an admirable job breathing life into characters otherwise completely devoid of personality. The rest of the cast doesn’t fare as well, with literally every other role barely even registering enough to make an impression. Christian Bale in particular disappoints, reducing the should-be-badass John Connor into “military guy who shouts a lot”. Meanwhile, any opportunity the film may have had to redeem itself in the story/storytelling department is quickly thwarted by an embarrassingly illogical and self-defeating central conflict (Spoiler alert: Skynet is stupid), as well as a non-stop array of cringe-inducing lines and shamelessly flagrant callbacks to previous Terminator entries.
Blu-ray? Yes.
Notable Extras: DVD – Includes the theatrical cut of the film, along with a Moto-Terminator featurette. Blu-ray – Includes the theatrical and directors cuts of the film, along with featurettes (“Re-Forging the Future”, “The Moto-Terminator”), a “Resist or Be Terminated” Video Archive, a Terminator Salvation Official Movie Prequel Digital Comic Issue #1, a WB Maximum Movie Mode, Focus Points, and a digital copy of the theatrical version.

BEST DVD PRICE
Target Best Buy Fry’s
$15.99 $15.99 $14.77
Amazon – $9.99

BEST BLU-RAY PRICE
Target Best Buy Fry’s
$19.99 $19.99 N/A
Amazon – $16.99

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