Saturday, December 28, 2019

Terminator: Dark Fate (2019)

It’s not often that I get really excited about a movie from the coming attractions.  It’s maybe once every few years, on average.  When I heard that there was going to be a new Terminator movie that had the involvement of both Linda Hamilton and James Cameron, I got excited.  I mean, I knew kind of what to expect.  It was going to be an action movie and maybe have some sort of paradox to think about.

I didn’t get exactly what I expected.

The trailers presented an action movie, and there was a good deal of action.  They hinted at the return of Arnold Schwarzenegger, but not as much as I would have expected.  It seems like the movie is trying to do something new, but is instead putting a new face on the same idea.

We now have a new savior of humanity in the form of Dani Ramos.  Skynet is gone, but there’s a new, similar threat that humanity needs saving from.  Grace is sent back from the future to protect Dani from the REV-9, a new two-in-one Terminator.  It has a solid-metal endoskeleton with a liquid-metal terminator covering it, making for an extra target when the script calls for it.  Sarah Connor finds them all because she’s getting texts from an anonymous benefactor.  (I’ll give you three guesses who that benefactor is.)  So, the race is on to save Dani and figure out exactly what her role is in the future.

The movie was entertaining.  It had the action I would expect from a Terminator movie.  There’s an advanced robot from the future trying to change that future with lots of guns and explosions, plus at least one protector that’s above average in terms of comb at skills.  Still, I found the movie lacking.  It’s almost like the movie was written to what we would expect of it.

Part of the problem is that there are only so many directions you can go with a new Terminator.  They had the basic robot.  They had the liquid robot.  It’s hard to think of how you could one up that.  There is also a sense of fatigue.  While this movie continues from Terminator 2, there are a few other movies and a TV series.  It’s hard to think of the movie without bringing at least some of that into it.

I wouldn’t say that I was disappointed.  It’s more that the movie didn’t quite live up to what I was expecting.  It’s not a bad movie.  It’s more that there was a mismatch.  It is an enjoyable movie.  I’m just curious as to where the franchise will go from here.

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