Terminator: Genisys

There were already a lot of strikes against this movie and then to add insult to injury, I had to double check the “correct” spelling of Genisys.  The agony this movie is inflicting on me seems endless.  And with that, I have tipped my hand as to how this review is going to end.

Terminator: Genisys is a complete mess, which sadly has been a recurring theme for this franchise over the last 20 years.  So in that regard, I can understand why rebooting it makes sense, particularly since the original Judgment Day was in 1997, so when that came and went it made the franchise feel a little dated.

But the way they handled the reboot just trampled all over the first two films, which I still consider to be two of the best sci-fi movies of all time (with the second one being one of my all-time favourite movies period, having seen it at least 25 times because when 14-year-old me was in a hotel for a swim meet one weekend, I figured out how to watch pay-per-view for free, so had this movie on repeat every minute I was in the room).  I’m not even sure if I need to be careful with the big twist, since James Cameron spoiled it for me repeatedly in Cineplex’s pre-show.

Without even referring specifically to it I may still give it away.  My complaint is simple: somehow someone decided that a good plot twist would be to do something to one of the franchise’s main characters that renders every movie to date, including this one, totally irrelevant.  I have no idea why that ever seemed like a good plan.  Sure, it makes it easy to put a new timeline in place going forward, but even if that was the plan, the movie fails as a reboot because the ending leaves us with no momentum whatsoever and no reason to anticipate the next movie in the series (if there even is one after this debacle).

I often complain about reboots and, in particular, rehashes of origin stories as a reboot mechanism.  Well, this reboot mechanism is worse.  And that has me really shaking my head in disbelief, that somehow they found a way to be worse than the lazy reboots, because it seems they did really try with this one.  Unfortunately, it’s just so misguided and so unfaithful to what has come before that it offends me.  It brings me almost to the level of hatred I had for the Star Wars prequels.  Terminator and Terminator 2 were movies I absolutely loved as a teenager and basically, this movie is the equivalent of Skynet sending a robot back to 1991 to repeatedly punch me in the groin while I was watching T2 for the first time, thereby changing the course of history and preventing me from ever liking it.  And this time, the robots won.

I’m not even giving this a rating.  I’m too angry.

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12 thoughts on “Terminator: Genisys

  1. tubularsock

    Great post Sean. Tubularsock likes that you are clear but Tubularsock would rather see Schwarzenegger in a fifth rate film than have to experience him again as Governor of California, Trust Me!

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  2. Jay

    Oh my god, a robot after my own heart!

    Sean, you know I seethed through this whole movie, but your review made me laugh before 8am on a Monday, so thank you. Still not worth it, but good review.

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  3. Jay

    I also should say: I hated it for different reasons. I haven’t seen any other Terminator movie. I have no frame of reference. Of course I knew it was significant when he said “I’ll be back” even though that line barely fit in the movie. But apparently I missed several other “famous quotes”, so they just seemed like dumb and wooden lines like all the rest. I also couldn’t follow the story. This movie does NOT want new viewers. It’s apparently comfortable punching old viewers in the groin and shitting all over their nostalgia, and it is NOT courting a single newbie. There is way too much in this movie that needs extensive background knowledge, and even then it appears to break its own established rules and run rampart over them.

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  4. Jay

    I also wonder if it’s in Arnold’s contract that the leads in this movie MUST be crappier actors than he, so he can look less robotic (ironically!) by comparison. I can’t imagine it is possible to find two less charismatic people on the planet.

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  5. The Telltale Mind

    I actually didn’t mind this film. Was it just a big rehash? Yep, but I went in knowing that and I knew exactly what to expect so in the end, I was never actually let down by it. I thought it was fun overall, but I just wish they had done something original instead of making this movie.

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  6. mauricem1972

    I can neither confirm, nor deny that I was punched in the groin by a Terminator back in 1991. Yeah this movie is infuriatingly bad. It’s not that it’s a poorly written movie (it is) or that the acting is weak (it is) but that it promises so much and quickly fizzles out. They were even talking about creating a new trilogy which is laughable in hindsight.

    If we hadn’t had T2 there would be no comparison and I’d be saying “well I guess this is the best they could do.” I say that about Ghostbusters 2. But T2 is one of the greatest sequels ever and they’ve spent decades trying to recreate the magic. It was a fun movie, but after T2, T3, T4 and the inevitable T6 it just feels tired and worn out like “Pops”. Old but obsolete.

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  7. Pingback: Jay’s Top Cinematic Moments of 2015 | ASSHOLES WATCHING MOVIES

    1. Sean Post author

      You’re right, bored is worse than angry, though I probably would have picked “bored” if I had the choice. Sounds like James Cameron wants to make more of these, so maybe I’ll have another chance at it.

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      1. Mr. Bobinsky

        But he won’t direct, just produce. Sad. Deadpool’ director is shooting. Arnold and Linda are in though! It’s a pity Cameron is busy with all these Avatar sequels….

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