Terminator Genisys (Movie Review)

There is NO REASON for “Genesis” to be spelt like that!!! It’s fucking bullshit!!!

Hey, if James Cameron approved it, it must be good, right?

Right?!?!

Sigh….Let’s just get through this.

 Terminator Genisys

Directed by: Alan Taylor

Produced by: David Ellison, Dana Goldberg

Written by: Laeta Kalogridis, Patrick Lussier

Genres: Science fiction, action

Starring: Emilia Clarke, Jai Courtney, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Jason Clarke, Lee Byung-hun, J.K. Simmons, Matt Smith

Music by: Lorne Balfe

Plot: A retcon of sorts of the original series, Genisys (Ugh) kicks off right at the beginning of the Terminator series, with Kyle Reese (Jai Courtney) getting sent back in time to 1987 by John Connor (Jason Clarke) in order to save the human race by protecting John’s mother, Sarah (Emilia Clarke) from a Terminator (Poorly CGI’d Arnold Schwarzenegger). Once he gets back to the era when Los Lobos ruled the earth though, he learns that things have gone completely nutty. Sarah has been hunted by a goddamn T-1000 (Lee Byung-hun) for fourteen years, and has been protected by her own pet Terminator (Actual, live-action Schwarzenegger). What twists and turns await Kyle and Sarah in this bizarre reality?

Well, I won’t tell you, but I will tell you this: They certainly would’ve been a lot more impactful if I hadn’t had the big twist drilled violently into my head by the fucking trailers. God, the marketing team really dropped the ball.

In my opinion, the Terminator franchise should’ve ended with the second one (Unpopular opinion, I know). The Terminator is still an amazing movie, and Judgement Day is legitimately one of my favourite movies of all time. Rise of the Machines and Salvation, on the other hand, make no sense storywise (Skynet dies in T2, why are there still fucking Terminators???) and, quality-wise, the third and fourth movies left so little impact on me that I’m not sure how bad they actually are, which, I suppose, is kind of worse than just being a bad film.

Genisys, at least, is better and, yes, more memorable than T3 or TS. Does that make it a good movie, though?

Here’s your hint.

Getting right into the review, the one constant throughout this franchise, besides the constant need to manufacture some new disaster. illogical or not, in order to pump out a sequel, is the Governator (What a stupid nickname) himself, Arnold Schwarzenegger.

Or whoever the hell this is supposed to be.

As much as people (Including myself) enjoy ragging on his limited acting ability (Though I’ve heard he’s good in Maggie, I dunno) I truly believe that his performances as the Terminator are legitimately great. It would be so easy to just be a stereotypical robot, but Arnie is downright terrifying in the first movie, and even seamlessly added comedic elements to his performance in Judgment Day, to terrific results.

Thankfully, despite it being twenty-one freaking years since his last genuinely good movie…

Well, “genuinely” might actually be pushing it.

… Arnold brings it to Genisys. He’s maybe not as intimidating as he used to be, considering he’s pushing seventy and is essentially playing Sarah Connor’s adoptive dad, but he still brings it in the action scenes (….Mostly), has some good comedic lines (Even if most of the comedy falls flat, what with the constant attempted shoehorning of repeat gags) and holds up his end of the bargain in terms of chemistry with Courtney and Clarke… Even if the latter two don’t hold up their end of the bargain.

Oh… We’ll get to you two later.

But, with that out of the way, I just like giving credit where credit is due. While better than the third and fourth movies… Terminator Genisys is really bad. Not unwatchable, but… Yeah, still unmistakably bad.

The first warning that this was not going to be good was the fact that it was rated PG-13. I’m not saying that a Terminator movie has to be rated R to be good, but… It sure helps, doesn’t it? Terminator has always worked best as a scary, gritty sci-fi thriller and it’s hard to deliver on those fronts when you have a quota of blood and f-bombs that you can’t surpass. One would think they would’ve learned that with the last two movies, but on would be wrong.

And what’s with people’s asses getting blocked by shadow? Will kid’s retinas burn off if they glimpse CGI Schwarzenegger’s heavily muscled rear, or something?

This is all a poorly-veiled way of saying that I wanted Emilia Clarke nudity, by the way.

 So what if I’m shallow? We’ve established that. Sue me.

Genysis also falls into the trap of shoving in a bunch of callbacks to earlier films. Throughout the runtime, especially the first half, there are moments that are tailor-made to look exactly like scenes from the first two movies and, well, I guess it makes sense story-wise, and it’s not like callbacks are the worst thing ever, but these scenes are literally the EXACTLY the same. I don’t care if you’re ripping off Citizen Kane scene for scene, you CANNOT be that lazy. Even if you do make it similar, you can still do something new or creative with the locales and the dialogue (I think the only classic Terminator line that wasn’t rehashed is “Hasta la vista, baby”). Otherwise, you’re just being unimaginative, and fuck you for that.

Even the aspects of the film that should’ve improved from the last movies (The action and visual effects, specifically) show no noticeable improvement from T2, even. The action is completely forgettable, and seemingly built around Arnie’s inevitable semi-witty line, while the visual effects don’t look like they’ve come a long way from Judgment Day and sure, T2‘s special effects are terrific even today (Unlike the Arnie-Matronic in the first movie) but that doesn’t mean that we can’t improve on it, right? Isn’t that the whole point of a sequel (Or whatever the fuck this movie is supposed to be)? To build on the positives of the original?

Oh. Shit. Forgot who I was talking about for a second.

Since I’ve gone on enough about everything else, it’s time to get to bitching about the things that piss me off the most about the movie, the wasted characters of Kyle Reese and Sarah Connor. Sarah had a terrific arc in the first two movies, transforming from an understandably frightened sadsack into an intense, asskicking badass. In Genysis, she starts off as a badass and… Goes nowhere from there. The only other layer to her character that we get is that she’s unhappy with the fact that her life seems predestined, and wants to do whatever she wants. Wow, we’ve never seen THAT character archetype before!

Oh hi, most every Disney Princess ever!!!

And as great an actress as Emilia Clarke is, she really isn’t very good as Sarah Connor. It’s not like she isn’t trying, because she obviously is, it’s just not clicking. At least Sarah likes the Ramones. That’s gotta count for something, right?

“Take me to the airport and put me on a plane. Hurry hurry hurry. Before I go insane. I can’t control my fingers. I can’t control my brain, oh noohoohooohooohooo…”

For being a main character of the first movie, Kyle Reese is a surprisingly underappreciated character in the franchise. In terms of the popularity, he probably ranks under the T-800, T-1000, Sarah Connor, pre-complete and utter insanity Edward Furlong, and that punk stereotype that the T-800 murders at the beginning of the first movie.

When I heard that Bill Paxton was a punk, I translated that as Eric Bana in my mind. Weird, I know.

So, does Jai Courtney bring Kyle Reese back to the desired level of stardom? Your hint is at 2:40-2:45 in the video below. Also, spoilers for Se7en.

Kyle Reese is so fucking annoying in Genisys. Whenever he opens his mouth, it’s only to bitch and complain at Clarke and Schwarzenegger, yell frantically that Schwarzenegger can’t be trusted when that’s obviously not the case, and hit on Clarke. What a waste.

Speaking of waste, Clarke isn’t the only great, miscast or poorly utilized actor in Genisys. Jason Clarke is perfectly unspectacular as John Connor, Matt Smith appears for two seconds, Lee Byung-hun has nowhere near enough screen time and J.K. Simmons is completely wasted on a character that contributes nothing. What a spectacular comedown from Whiplash.

Fletcher is gonna be pissed.

Overall: It doesn’t usually bode well when Arnold Schwarzenegger gives the most emotional performance in your movie.

Rating: 4.5/10

Still a better actor than governor, though.

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June 2015 Movie (And Spoiler-free Game of Thrones!!!) Round-up

Featured image

I’m cheering for the horse, personally.

There’s not much to report in this month’s round-up, mainly because I already did a round-up earlier this month. 

That said, I did see one movie, so I kind of have to review that, and I also figured that now would be as good a time as any to give my final thoughts on the latest season of Game of Thrones. I was planning to do a full-fledged review of the whole season, but considering I’ve already devoted around 10 000 words to that season, I figure I can half-ass it just this once.

Onwards!!!

Game of Thrones– Season 5 (No Spoilers, don’t worry)

Oh god, I’m getting a nervous twitch and random twinges of depression just thinking about it.

Directed by: Michael Slovis, Mark Mylod, Jeremy Podeswa, Miguel Sapochnik, David Nutter

Written by: David Benioff, D.B. Weiss, Dave Hill, Bryan Cogman

Starring: Peter Dinklage, Emilia Clarke, Lena Headey, Kit Harington, Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, Natalie Dormer, Stephen Dillane, Sophie Turner, Maisie Williams, Jonathan Pryce, Aidan Gillen, Carice van Houten, Liam Cunningham, John Bradley-West, Jerome Flynn, Alfie Allen, Gwendoline Christie, Indira Varma, Conleth Hill, Hannah Murray, Michiel Huisman, Nathalie Emmanuel, Kristofer Hivju, Tom Wlaschiha, Dean-Charles Chapman, Michael McElhatton, Iwan Rheon

Plot: Let’s face it, you’ve seen it by now.

This is the first Game of Thrones season that is really diverging from the framework that the books set out. How do I feel about this? Well, to put it as open-mindedly as possible, I don’t give a flying fuck and neither should you. The show and the book are different. I don’t give a shit about Lady Stoneheart (Don’t look it up. That’s a book spoiler), if she doesn’t appear, she doesn’t appear. They can only cram so much shit into a show before it collapses under its own weight.

So, yeah, this is another great season, if probably the weakest of the five so far. Some of the storylines don’t go anywhere (*Cough* Dorne *Cough*) and some of the characters fall flat (*Cough* Sand Snakes *Cough*) and weren’t written particularly well.

My name is We are Inigo Montoya the Sand Snakes. You killed my our father. Prepare to die.

That said, even the worst Game of Thrones season is better than many show’s best season, so I can’t complain too much.

  • Tyrion meeting Daenarys is the best thing ever (It’s not a spoiler. Look at the fucking poster).
  • Cersei Lannister’s fall from grace fascinated me. Only a Game of Thrones story arc could make me feel the utmost hatred for a character, take the next logical step to schadenfreude once things start to go wrong for them, and then have those feelings turn to outright pity. You know, even if everything that happens to her is her own goddamn fault.
  • As weak as the Dorne storyline ended up being, there are three scenes I did like, two of which came at the end, and one of which I like for purely shallow reasons. If you’ve seen the episode, you know which one I’m talking about.
  • –  The storyline in Meereen is actually one of the stronger parts of this season. that doesn’t make some of Daenarys’ decisions any less puzzling, though.
  • If you’re actually upset that a show that is known for being overwhelmingly dark is being overwhelmingly dark, then I don’t know what to say to you. Be serious, maybe.

Rating: 8.5/10

Mortdecai

Oh, fuck off.

Directed by: David Koepp

Written by: Eric Aronson

Starring: The soulless husk of Johnny Depp, Gwyneth Paltrow, Ewan McGregor, Paul Bettany, Olivia Munn, Jeff Goldblum

Plot: Charlie Mortdecai (Depp) is a sleazy, pompous English art smuggler who is deep in debt. To recoup his losses, he agrees to help a secret agent (Ewan McGregor) find a stolen painting.

You know that an actor’s in a rut when their best performance in a while has been the cameo they made in a reboot of their old TV show.

That was legitimately amazing, though.

  • Uh… Paltrow and McGregor are alright, I guess.
  • – Seriously, Johnny Depp is too good of an actor to rehash his Jack Sparrow character every performance… Right???
  • –  This movie’s 106 minutes long, and it feels three times that length. Unfunny comedies tend to do that.
  • – Repeating jokes aren’t usually funny, but they can be. This movie tries around three or four repeat gags. They’re all spectacularly bottom of the barrel.

Rating: 2/10

Game of Thrones- Season 5, Episode 7: The Gift (SPOILER Review/Recap)

Well, look who came crawling the fuck back!

No Arya today, but considering how much stuff happened in this episode, that’s probably a good thing. Shame about the Dorne storyline not really going anywhere tho-

*Brain short circuits*.

SPOILER ALERT. OBVIOUSLY.

The Wall

Jon Snow leaves with Tormund Giantsbane for Hardhome, which I assume is the home of the Wildlings North of the Wall. I dunno, Google it, I guess. Before he leaves, Sam gives Jon the Dragonglass he used to kill the White Walker, which I’m sure definitely means that Jon won’t have to use it. Now left attending an old and frail Maester Aemon Targaryen, Sam is left with Gilly as his only friend at Castle Black when Aemon dies in what’s actually a really touching death scene, especially in a show in which death is usually accompanied by head explosions and the audience’s’ screams of dismay. It was really well done, and quite sad, especially when he starts talking to his little brother, Aegon.

Sam gives a nice eulogy for the Maester before Alliser Thorne threatens him, like a dick. Who knew that giving him power would result in it going to his head? Later that night, Sam and Gilly are assaulted by a couple of the more rapey Brothers of the Night’s Watch, and are only saved by Ghost, who has been off doing whatever the fuck direwolves do in this goddamn show.

Somewhere, Nymeria is pulling all the strings. I’m calling it right now.

Anyways, Gilly tends to Sam’s wounds, and then they totally bang. Hey! Maybe this episode won’t be totally horri-

Winterfell

Oh, God damn it. Shit, let’s just get through this.

Sansa asks Reek to help her escape Winterfell. I call him Reek and not Theon, because he’s still being a sleazy little fuck, selling out Sansa to Evil Elijah Wood and getting a nice old lady flaid to death. I mean, I get that he was psychologically torn to shreds by Evil Elijah Wood, but there comes a point where he would display the slightest bit of a fucking conscience at least, right?

If I half-assedly defended that scene in the last episode for nothing, then I’m going to be pretty goddamn angry.

Anyways, Sansa steals what looks like a small, bladed tool, and if that means that EEW’s days are numbered, well, yes please.

I can only rewatch his death in Sin City so many times.

Miscellaneous Winter

Stannis is having a pretty rough go of it. Not only are his troops, used to fighting in warmer climates, having real trouble slogging through the Northern winter, but the Sellswords he paid for have abandoned him, and Davos is counselling a return to Castle Black. Stannis cordially tells him to fuck off and turns instead to Melisandre for help. She tells him that she is sure of his victory, but it would really help if we would go ahead and sacrifice his only daughter to the Red God. Fuck this lady.

To his credit, Stannis tells her to go soak her head. That’s Stannis for ya: A+ parent, thoroughly mediocre human being otherwise.

Meereen

Tyrion and Jorah are now officially owned by a noble named Yezzan no Qaggaz, who (Surprise!) is a complete and utter dickhead.

I know, slavers are dicks, it came as a shock to me, too.

The odd couple are destined for the fighting pits of Meereen, where, double surprise, Daenarys is visiting the smaller arenas before the main event, but not before enjoying a roll in the hay with Recast McFuckface. I guess she’s into him for his looks, because he’s spewing some garbage about murdering the nobles. Because that’s obviously going to end well. Wisely, she ignores him (For now!?!?) and goes to the fight, where she is disgusted, because she has at least some semblance of morals. When Jorah hears that Dany is watching the carnage, he rushes onto the arena and presents himself to her. Before she can feed him to one of her overgrown newts, Tyrion wanders into the arena, revealing himself to be Jorah’s gift to her.

Dayum. This is gonna be good.

Dorne

Bewbs.

Oh, and, uh, Jamie, Myrcella, something something.

I am a shallow pig. Mind as well admit that now.

King’s Landing

In the Sept of Baelor, Olenna Tyrell meets with the High Sparrow, trying to get him to release Loras and Queen Margaery after he and Cersei sicced the Faith Militant on them. When he proves headstrong, Olenna tries to bribe him, an, unlike literally anybody else in King’s Landing, the High Sparrow proves that he is not in it for himself. Scarily enough, he legitimately believes that he’s doing the god’s work, and cannot be dissuaded from doing what he believes is right. Wotta dick.

Also, Petyr plots with Olena about probably some wretched shit.

In the Sept, Cersei visits Margaery in the Queen’s cell in order to gloat, flashing her shit-eating grin in unrepentant glee. God, I can’t wait till someone gives this PsychoBitch the defeat she-

Oh. OH.

OH DAAAAAAAAAAAAYYYUUUUUUMMMMMM!!!!!!!!

I’m really hoping someone around you was using an air horn when you were reading that. You know, for effect.

Overall: Probably the best episode of the season so far, “The Gift” does a good job setting up what I can only hope are the earth-shattering (And hopefully not horrible) events to come.