McG‘s Terminator Salvation hits theaters tomorrow, and so far it seems like the reaction is violently mixed. I screened the film earlier this week, and hope to write a review over the weekend, or maybe even appear on the /Filmcast, but here are my quick thoughts. If you’re expecting the movie to reach the bar set by Terminator and T2, you need to lower your expectations. Don’t get me wrong, I really enjoyed this movie. The franchise does get Salvation, as the title implies, and the film is a HUGE improvement over Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines.
The action scenes are pretty damn cool, with McG paying homage to Children of Men/Alfonso Curon with a series of one-shot single camera sequences (which obviously aren’t one-shot, but stitched together in post) that will have you drooling. That said, the character development is almost non existent, the pacing is a mess and the dialogue could’ve been written by a 10-year-old. Overall, I enjoyed the film.
I know I might be in the minority. I understand how people might not think this is a good movie, but I’m surprised at some of the violently negative reaction the film has gotten in some of the early reviews. I think general audiences will like this film a lot more than critics. The film is getting an 8.4 out of 10 on IMDb with over 2000 votes (I expect this to go down to the 6.5-7.5 range) but only 34% fresh on Rotten Tomatoes. I have compiled a bunch of excerpts from the early reviews after the jump.
Discuss: Did you see Terminator Salvation? What did you think? Leave your thoughts in the comments below!
Seven Movie Review Excerpts:
Screenrant: “Terminator Salvation is great for the don’t-expect-much-except-action-out-of-a-summer-movie crowd, not so great if you’re looking for a worthy successor to the first two films.”
InContention: “The film sucks inspiration out of the viewer in a staggering fashion. It disavows intriguing ideas explored in the franchise to date and renders a potentially exciting re-launch of the material impotent and meaningless. It is frankly difficult to give the film a whole lot of thought.
Cinematical: “McG proves that he’s more than a punchline for online jokes — his action scenes are fierce and eye-popping; he gives us the post-apocalyptic Skynet world we’ve always wanted to see and then asks if we want seconds or thirds. This is the Terminator film for a generation that expects over-the-top; an audience who likes it rough, but still PG-13, so we don’t get carded at the door.”
SciFi: “If you’re an action junkie, it’s easy to like a lot of what happens in Terminator: Salvation. Director McG engineers one set piece after another with style and expertise, and generally keeps the story moving along at a brisk enough pace that you’re seldom bored or confused.” … “Not unlike Gavin Hood’s Wolverine, however, there seems to be a certain sense of obligation, rather than true inspiration, that drives this film, even if it (also like Wolverine) nevertheless manages to accomplish most of its modest goals. ”
Harry Knowels: “This feels like ALIEN RESURRECTION to me. Something that kills something wonderful for me. I’m no longer interested in Terminator. McG terminated my enthusiasm. I love the first two films. At least I’ll always have that. Fuck this movie.”
AICN : “I LOVE LOVE LOVE the action here. McG does a great job of putting you in the middle of some crazy, awesome battles against the machines.” … “The film is a lot of fun. An explosive, thrilling series of gritty action sequences that makes for a good, but not great, film.”
CinemaBlend : “Terminator Salvation is pretty good. As a summer blockbuster experience it falls squarely in the middle, never reaching any emotional or technical heights but never devolving into self-parody, either. That’s a higher compliment than it sounds, given how badly the franchise stumbled with T3: Rise of the Machines, and how few people saw any reason to revisit John Connor and his fight to save the future.” … “Terminator: Salvation is a solid and well-paced bit of entertainment”