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Byron Shire
April 11, 2021

Cinema Review – Terminator Genisys

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By all accounts, Arnold Scwarzenegger made a reasonable fist of his gig as governor of California (not that many would have opposed his decisions), and it’s not hard to see him as a reasonable, self-aware person. Along with Bruce Willis and Dwayne Johnson, he gives the impression that, deep down, he believes his screen persona to be a bit of a joke (which it is). So Arnie is sort of likeable for this reason, though why he felt the need to be bothered with yet another Terminator – this is the fifth – is a mystery. It’s not my type of movie, but I’ve talked myself blue in the face about the brain-dead imbecility of extravagant violence as porn and its contribution to the desensitising of society (do you think that the retards of ISIS are not Arnie’s and Vin’s and Sly’s biggest fans?). As with most franchise flicks, the earlier ones are the best (or, in this case, least bad).

Time travel has always been a dicey concept for filmmakers to deal with, but in the case of T1 through to T4, and again in this, there has always been an audience willing to gobble up whatever Hollywood wishes to pass off as ‘science’ knowing that, really, all that matters is the chase and humungous shitfight at the end. The Guardian (Arnie) is back in 1984 (a subtle choice of years, huh?) with the mission of protecting Sarah (Emilia Clarke) who is destined, if Right prevails, to give birth to a hero of the future. But don’t quote me, for the storyline and plot points are almost impenetrable. Clarke is quite engaging, in a cutesy, shallow way, and even though Arnie’s acting skills have never been likely to see him play Hamlet at the Globe, in a bizarre confluence of real-life celebrity meets cartoon characterisation, they are perfectly suited to a vehicle as stupid as this. Admittedly, I saw it after visiting Stonehenge and have to say that the awesomeness of reality leaves for dead the childishness of CGI-gone-troppo.

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