Friday, May 22, 2009

Terminator Salvation

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Originally uploaded by terminatorizm
In Terminator Salvation we are finally in the post-Judgment Day war, but we are early in it – the resistance is still learning to fight against the machines, and the machines are still fighting against John Connor. John Connor is finally dealing with the future his mother warned him about, the one he lived his life preparing for. He thought he was prepared for it until Marcus Wright arrives and shocks John completely – Marcus is a terminator but believes he is human. I have to say that no Terminator film will ever match Cameron’s original films, but this one is a good addition to the series.

What was so great to me about Terminator Salvation is how McG has explored the mythos of Judgment Day and John Connor. By placing the audience early in the war we get to see the continued journey of how John Connor becomes the leader of the resistance. You see when we come into the movie John is not the leader. John is high in the resistance but there is a central command that does not accept him as leader. The writers and McG have explored a very simple concept of John Connor as savior; because of Sarah, John has the knowledge of the machines and the war, and knows that he is who can end it all but while a great many people accept Johns story there is another group of people that think he is what amounts to a false prophet. John has to fight for his position as leader of the resistance.

This is the first Terminator movie that has not had a plot directly related to time travel. However, as the core of the films deal with time travel it does come up in this film. The primary thing that John Connor has to deal with is not only pushing forward to beat down Skynet, but finding his father Kyle Reese. At this point in time Kyle is actually younger than John, but John must find him, protect him and shepard him into the soldier that he will send back in time to protect his mother without Kyle ever knowing that this is what is happening. And after a lifetime of growing up never knowing his father, John Connor will finally meet him.

What I am still weighing in my mind is the character of Marcus Wright. I can’t say that I disliked the character, and I think that upon further viewing I will in fact like him more, but the character was a bit odd to me. I think my only reasoning is that never before has a main character entirely taken focus off one of the Connor’s. However, his character served a great purpose in the film and was pretty dang interesting so I can’t complain. I do however wish that Kate Connor was further explored as it felt like there should have been more to her in the movie.

Terminator Salvation has gotten a lot of crap, and I have to say that most of it is probably coming from people that still won’t accept McG as a credible director. However, he seems to be on a string of well done movies, it began with We Are Marshall and if it continues past Terminator Salvation I’d say I can safely call McG a dang good director. I’d take him over Michael Bay any day.

Director: McG
Writers: John D. Brancato & Michael Ferris
John Connor: Christian Bale
Marcus Wright: Sam Worthington
Blair Williams: Moon Bloodgood
Dr. Serena Kogan: Helena Bonham Carter
Kyle Reese: Anton Yelchin
Kate Connor: Bryce Dallas Howard
General Ashdown: Michael Ironside

John Connor: We've been fighting a long time. We are out numbered by machines. Working around the clock,without quit. Humans have a strength that cannot be measured. This is John Connor. If you are listening to this,you are the resistance.

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