Terminator Salvation: a superficial, inconsistent, gritty battle of Transformer-esque proportions, within PG-13 constraints. Director McG is like the poor man's Michael Bay.
So I'm back from seeing the Advance Screening of Terminator Salvation at the Granville 7 Cinema here in Vancouver, and all I gotta say is... the movie wasn't bad. It wasn't the worst thing in cinema history, but it wasn't very good either, or even close to being on the same level as previous Terminator films in the series (minus T3). Not that my expectations were very high. In fact, they were low, very low, but I still came away entertained, despite the numerous issues with the movie.
Fans will be pleased with the amount of action in Salvation, as well with the attention paid to artistic direction of the various robots in the Skynet army, but if fans are looking to connect with the film, on a high level like they connected with Jim Cameron's films, they won't get the chance. Mainly because the writing sucks. The dramatic elements felt lame, forced, and tacked on for the sake of having them in summer blockbuster. Even then, I wouldn't even call them 'dramatic' elements, as they were void of any genuine emotion.
Many, if not all of the characters are forgettable. The only one who holds the film together is Christian Bale, aka John Connor, who was the only one engaging enough in his performance to actually convince the audience that the survival of the rebellion rests in his hands. I mean come on, if there's a rapper, (would-be actor)in the film, you know the film is generally gonna suck. If you wanted to point fingers you could blame the writers, who also penned the not so great Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines. These guys just keep butchering Terminator.
Don't get me wrong, the film is watchable, but weak in many areas that I think even director McG knew there wasn't much to work with, so his remedy was using explosions to cover up the lack of story, and even then, the visual effects were uneven, and in many scenes you could tell they were shot on green-screen.
On top of that, there are many inconsistencies all around that make you think the filmmakers were lazy, or just retarded. There were characters that they could have elaborated on, but were neglected, which gives the film an overall cardboard feel, especially in the last half, where things are quite rushed. Not to mention the shoddy editing, that even casual film-goers may notice.
My Tweets after the film pretty much sum up, what I need to communicate about Terminator Salvation. "A" for effort "C+" for execution. And if you've seen the 4 minute clip of Terminator Salvation online, then you've practically seen the entire movie already.
I think I'm going to re-watch Terminator 2, to cleanse myself of McG's movie.