ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Terminator: Genisys (2015)

Updated on July 8, 2015

The Poster

Credits

A review by: Jeff Turner

Dir: Alan Taylor

Written by: Laeta Kalogridis, Patrick Lussier

Produced by: David Ellison, Dana Goldberg.

Starring: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Emilia Clarke, Jai Courtney, Jason Clarke, J.K. Simmons, Matt Smith.

Currently Playing at: Aksarben Cinema, Marcus Midtown Cinema, AMC Star Council Bluffs 17, AMC Westroads 14.

The Review

I remember the first time I watched Terminator 2. I was eight years old and flipping through channels. This movie came on and it had my attention almost compulsively. I did not realize that Terminator 2 was in fact Terminator 2, one of the most critically acclaimed blockbusters of all time. I rewatched it and really enjoyed, as did I the first one. Then I saw studios steadily run the franchise into the ground with Terminator: Salvation (although I can appreciate a good celebrity tantrum, thanks Christian Bale!)

Which brings us to Terminator: Genisys, a film so riddled with plotholes, it plays like a bad Terminator fanfiction. What kind of name is Genisys, anyway? Were the studios thinking of going with Genesis but changed it so they could sound cool and hip? It seems like a tacky title, but that’s the least of this film’s problems. I can appreciate a movie that revels in its stupid, Furious 7 was fun for this reason, as was Mad Max: Fury Road. Genisys is no Fury Road, it is so blissfully unaware of how unbelievably convoluted and idiotic its plot is.

Kyle Reese (Jai Courtney, a total milquetoast in the role) is sent back to 1984 to save Sarah Connor from a Terminator (Arnold Schwarzenegger). Little does Reese know that Connor already knows what’s coming because she got saved by another Terminator when she was a little girl, and who has warned her about the impending danger of Skynet. They’ve been preparing ever since. What’s magical about T5 is that everything you need to know has already been spoiled by the trailer. You don’t even really need to read this review to determine whether you’d like or dislike the movie, all you’d need to do is go watch the trailer.

I digress, there’s a lot in Terminator: Genisys that I saw and thought “well at least that seems like a good idea on paper” that the film then later proceeded to botch. Removing the mothering the leader of the resistance aspect of Sarah Connor’s character so she can stand on her own as an individual, but it fails to land.

The acting is generally pretty lousy. J.K. Simmons shows up as a cop in two different timelines, and he’s efficient despite barely being in the film. Emilia Clarke has her moments, there’s a bit of that Daenerys confidence that shows up in certain scenes, and there are other scenes where accent slips. Clarke should be in movies, I like her as an actress, but this was a bad choice for a first blockbuster.

Jai Courtney and Jason Clarke bored me to tears. What stood out to me in the beginning was how Clarke looked as John Connor. He looked scary, he had crazy eyes; he looked like a villain. It was apparent that was pretty badly miscast, and Jai Courtney’s not a whole lot better. His Kyle Reese is an absolute bore, and sometimes an active jerk towards Connor. Courtney and Clarke has no chemistry together, this is the worst chemistry I’ve seen between two leads since I don’t know when.

Schwarzenegger deserves credit where credit is due, he looks like he’s having a lot of fun. I’ve read a lot of articles stating that it’s time for the general public to declare him an auteur and I think there’s some truth to that. No matter who directed him, the influence of Schwarzenegger trumped anything a director could suggest. His scenes are the only parts of the movie where I genuinely laughed or was invested in, which the fact that Schwarzenegger was able to add a sense of life into this plot isn’t faint praise. More on that in a moment.

I can see what the studio heads were thinking with this plot. “X-Men: Days of Future Past focused on time travel and wrote the installments of the franchise that tanked out of the canon, we can do the same with Terminator and then people will like it again!” I don’t think Days of Future Past was entirely successful in what it wanted to do (especially since it’s only a matter of time before Marvel gets the property again, muddling up the timeline further) but what carried Days of Future Past was its immense ensemble cast and talented director. As for the director of T5, I’ve enjoyed Alan Taylor’s work in the past, he directed several episode from early seasons of Mad Men and Game of Thrones. Both are shows I love and his work is respectable, however, as Doug Ellin discovered when directing Entourage, Film and TV require a different approach. He shows no panache as a filmmaker. Perhaps said panache will be revealed in a project that he actually wants to make, but for Genisys he brings nothing.

Terminator: Genisys is a product. It’s a shallow effort by studios to convince fans of an old, long dead franchise to give them money. If it had been a bit better that may not have bothered me so much, I have recommended products in the past (see Transformers 4), but Genisys takes itself too seriously. It’s a half measure.

Rating: *

The Trailer

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • everymom profile image

      Anahi Pari-di-Monriva 

      3 years ago from Massachusetts

      Overall, I agree with your analysis and voted it "up" and "useful." However, I was very happily surprised to see BAFTA winner M.S. (something I'd not seen in the previews, but for a die-hard DW fan - I'm trying not to write spoilers for others - this was quite a treat in the first 15 minutes or so of the film. It's a good film to get on DVD or from Netflix, later, for family viewing night. Or, it's not a terrible film to watch at the theatre in summer, if you go on a bargain movie night when tickets are half price. It is not worth a full price of admission. Thanks so much for your review!

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)