Terminator Salvation: Does it "save" itself?
Going into the recent Terminator film, I wasn't expecting much. After having just seen the new Star Trek film, and being disappointed by the film's altering of Star Trek history (if you seen the film, you know what I mean), I didn't expect Salvation to do justice for the Terminator franchise. The first two Terminator films were James Cameron masterpieces in the sci-fi and action genres, and the 3rd film wasn't bad either. Was Salvation going to going to screw up this franchise or actually be an entertaining addition to the Terminator mythos? Well, in my opinion, Salvation does save itself; it was a pretty damn good flick.
Picking up a few years after the infamous D day, a small group of humans survive and attempt to battle Skynet, the machines that have taken over the world. John Conner, now a revered leader of the resistance movement, is still listening to the tapes his mother left him, and is believed to be the Messiah to some of the remaining humans. (Note John Conner's initials, J.C., and the Christ parallel becomes pretty interesting). There is also a very great character in the film named Marcus Wright, and he has a very important role to play. The plot follows the band of humans in battle against Skynet and its early versions of Terminators, and the action and post-apocalyptic setting does not disappoint. In the film, John Conner is very concerned about his future father, Kyle Reese, and his safety, and this works very well for the plot of the film. In the first film, it was Kyle who had to protect an unborn John, and now the roles have become reversed and John must protect his young father. To my surprise, the film remained very true to it’s franchise, and this one thing that I enjoyed in the film. Though Mr. Arnold Schwarzenegger did not have a starring role in this film, like the previous films, the film was able to create a worthy addition to the Terminator franchise, and it even had many great homages to the previous films. It was apparent that the filmmakers had great affection for the previous films, and also a great vision for directing sci-fiction and action.
Not only was the plot interesting, the action very entertaining, the film true to it's original, but the characters weren't bad either. Marcus Wright is an exceptional character, and Christian Bale's John Conner wasn't bad either. The biggest complaint I hear about this film is about Bale’s low, raspy Clint Eastwood-type voice, which Bale also used for the Batman character in the recent films of that franchise. This voice of Bale, however, did not bother me at all, and I actually liked it. Even if I did find the voice to be annoying, which I didn't, it couldn't take away from the overall awesomeness of this film.
Something I like about Terminator: Salvation is that truly withholds it's brand name. The new Star Trek, albeit somewhat entertaining, was a "Star Trek" film. This new Terminator film, however, was a "Terminator" film.
It works as a great new adaptation of a great story that has been around for along time. It adds a modern flare and vision, but retains the same qualities that made it predecessors, like Terminator 2: Judgment Day, a great film. If you are in the mood for a good action film with a great science- fiction plot, the I would recommend Terminator: Salvation, especially if you enjoyed it’s predecessors. This franchise, in my opinion can say, "I’ll be back" a couple more times, there is still much space left for future films in the series. Terminator: Salvation is a saving a grace for it's franchise, at least in my opinion.