Terminator Salvation Reviews
Let's be frank, here. The original Terminator film was meant to be a violent action/suspense film with appealing innovative sci-fi elements (time-traveling cyborgs and whatnot) coupled with some humor to lighten it up a tad. It was new at the time, awesome and compelling and became a classic.
This film has it harder than the others. The truth? This shouldn't be seen as the fourth movie at all. This is the first movie in a completely different setting: the future. This is about a VERY BLEAK PERIOD, lacking humor and hope, where everyday is a battle to live. People wanting another T1 or T2 aren't being realistic. This film is about humanity trying to retain what makes them human, and seeing in a battle-scarred John Connor, his optimistic teenage father-to-be and young mute accomplice, a compassionate female pilot, and a once-human machine WHY humanity is worth saving. This is nothing like the other movies for a reason and shouldn't be compared to them. If you sit through it and nitpick you're obviously wasting your time and money. To all the harsh critics I say this: SUSPENSION OF DISBELIEF DOES WONDERS. JUST ENJOY IT FOR WHAT IT IS.
Terminator fans like myself will embrace it depending on how comfortable they are with the future becoming the one the characters were all trying to prevent in the last three movies. "Fate is what we make" is clearly what John can and will do in this war. The previous films just ensured his survival to get to this point.
I have to judge Salvation with an open mind--it is NOT about one Terminator trying to kill Sarah Connor or John Connor and one person/machine trying to protect them (that plotline, while now classic in T1 and T2, has run its course.) All in all I like it as well as any of the other Terminator movies--especially with strong performances from Bale, Worthington, and Yelchin--all playing likable characters with developed personalities.
Christian Bale effectively makes an awesome G.I. Joe, but the character of John Conner has such dramatic potential that it's sad to see him so underwritten here. Bale is more than equal to the task as an actor if given the screenplay (forget Batman, if you want to see this man really act, watch his incredibly nuanced performance as the meek and humble rancher of quiet integrity in 3:10 to Yuma). Still, even with the plot holes and lost potential, this is a fun night at the movies.