Terminator Salvation

This movie put me in a bad mood. Right from the start it was wrong. Even the opening credits were a friggin boring mess. I don't even know where to start with this movie. It felt like it was made by some guys who won a radio contest or something. There wasn't one scene that didn't annoy me on some level. Whether it was the no-personality acting. Or the crap dialogue (that hardened hacks will probably make fun of). Or the cheap looking sets that looking like they were left over from some Jean Claude Van Dumb movie. Or the lackasensical plot. Or the abundance of blatant nonsense. This whole thing was like a date rape of the franchise by some good looking frathouse dickweed. This flick announced itself dead on arrival with a dull thud-- and then did nothing but decompose and stink up the room.

I had a feeling this movie was going to be bad. Christian Bail's sad lonelyman tantrum was a warning flare that things weren't right. But looking at the final product-- maybe he had a point? Maybe he realized that he was trapped in an artless humorless soggybox. Maybe he realized that he stupidly put his faith in someone who just stepped off the set of Charlies Angels 2 with a proud boner in his hand. Maybe he was just exhausted after finishing some half-assed career-damaging dialogue. And sure, maybe that lighting guy shouldn't have been wandering around. But it's no excuse. There is no excuse for being that much of a dick. Just like there is no excuse for trashing the lights of this franchise in this way. It had all the finesse of a bellyflop with none of the humor. At its best it kept me awake. At its worst it left me (literally) with my whole head inside my shirt. Listening to my own breath and enjoying the sensorical break.

I'm not sure why I thought this movie might be good. The trailer had no real money shot except for the motorcycle spin and Christian Bail is realistically an inferior actor to Arnold. Both in Dark Knight and this yawner he seems compelled to disappear his already bland personality into some bad gravelly fake voice that seems to be the direct result of having enough angry clout to keep people from telling him the truth about his bad gravelly fake voice. Plus, everyone who surrounded him did him no favors. Nobody picked up any slack. Everyone was generic. Generic hot girl. Generic yelling sarge-style guy with scars on his face. Generic kid. Generic robots. Generic tech. And generic action scenes that left the snap, crackle and pop in the box on the shelf.

On top of it all they missed the point of what Terminator movies are! They. Keep. Coming. They keep chasing. Robot eyes locked on target. No stopping till melted in lava or smushed. This movie wanders around dead landscape for the first solid hour. Doing nothing for no one. Then finally arriving at something that's a giveaway in the trailer. Yay. There was no chase. No cold heartless killer. Nobody to hate. No one to like. And in lieu of real excitement was the equivalent of donuts in the parking lot by some guido idiot with a flashy Monte Carlo.

Sure, I admit that there was perhaps a thing here or there that registered as 'cool' but any hint of goodness was immediately erased by some are-you-serious dialogue or leap in logic that popped any bubble. There simply was nothing to latch onto here that was sheer fun. As much as T3 was light and basically unnecessary--- when that 18-wheeler crane groaned and flipped up on end with the backwheel spinning off the axis-- it justified itself right there. It earned its right by being fun and having heart. This snoozefest seemed driven to squeeze every bit of color and fun out of itself and then acted like the death rattle was a wanted achievement.

Three Good Things About this Movie

- I laughed out loud 4 or 5 times although not for good reasons.
- Although I was grumbling throughout this movie-- it did hold my attention.
- The sound was great.

Three Bad Things About this Movie

- It was edited badly. It played like they got an order to chop 20 minutes off at the last minute.
- Annoying mute kid with unrealistic post-apocalyptic teased hair.
- Christian Bail's talent for smothering smoldering coals.

All in all, I had a feeling this movie was gonna suck--  but it was simply stunning that it blew the layup this badly. A total brick! I probably could rip it up even more if I wasn't so zoned out and disinterested. It didn't even look good! Cheap and rusted. Nothing was even registering after a while. Nothing exciting snapped me out of me misery trance. Not one character was fun. Not one sequence had true wow. I filled a mental notebook (both front and back) with logic issues for a while-- then just dropped the thing on the floor with the rest of the popcorn garbage. Angry at the studios for letting this film become what it is without a hint of irony.... except for the title.