Tonight I went and checked out “Terminator: Dark Fate,” which came out nine days ago, and I will let everyone what I thought about it. Is it better than any of the other sequels or does it sink lower in a franchise that has long been dead?
Edwin Arnaudin started his review by saying, “Terminator: Dark Fate operates as if none of the series’ films after T2: Judgement Day exist — a bit of a shortsighted choice seeing as all but Genisys are solid action flicks, but also a logical one since it’s the first installment in 27 years where saga creator James Cameron is involved in crafting the story.”
However, in the begging it appears like the newcomer will be in the same disappointing block like the last one. With future resistance leader John Conner (Jude Collie as the body double but CGI was made to recreate Edward Furlong’s face from T2, and Aaron Kunitz providing the voice) kind of shockingly not in the movie, the film fast forwards to the present where young Dani Ramos (Natalia Reyes) is mysteriously tracked through Mexico City by the apparently indestructible REV-9 terminator (Gabriel Luna).
Despite the REV-9’s fast speed and liquid metal agility make it the most scary time-traveling terminator the series has given fans, its main fight and car-chase scenes with other future soldier Grace, played by Mackenzie Davis, are flawed by horrible, clearly fake effects work. Arnaudin said, “In addition to an odd, blurry glow, these action sequences are often incomprehensible due to overly fast camera movements and an excess of edits by director Tim Miller that make one wonder if his Deadpool has similar issues that were somehow forgiven in the moment.”
As Dani and Grace are teamed up with dangerous lone warrior Sarah Connor, reprised by Linda Hamilton, “Dark Fate” finds a short solution to its visual despairs by, obviously, refraining from fights and shootouts. Seeking help and regrouping, the three follows coordinates to Texas and meet up with a T-800, reprised by Arnold Schwarzenegger, that Sarah has a long hatred for.
In one of the year’s real surprises, Schwarzenegger is hilarious as “Carl,” a terminator with a conscience who becomes a family man and, after 22 years of mastering his expressionless deliver, is a comedy genius. Arnaudin noted, “Back in his most iconic role, the actor is a consistent delight and peppers the film with humor and, eventually, top-notch action.”
Arnaudin continued, “Once the battles resume, Miller finds a solution to his movie’s nagging issue by filming in the dark of night and, occasionally, underwater — pet peeves of this critic that, at least here, miraculously result in greater clarity and increased excitement. The combo of Grace and Carl offer an exhilarating match for the REV-9, and Grace’s gifts with a metal chain are goosebump-inducing.”
Its faults quickly forgiven, “Terminator: Dark Fate” keeps the anxiety and excitement promoted to the end and brings the “Terminator franchise” back to where future ideas are again a welcome suggestion.
I have to admit, since the past few sequels have been disappointing, but maybe have some entertainment value in them; this one really redeemed the franchise. Taking a page from the “Halloween Franchise” of retroactive continuity, you can watch the first two movies then skip straight to this one. Have no fear; you can go to the theaters to watch this movie because it is an absolute must, especially for those who have been really underwhelmed by the past few, especially if you are a fan of this series and have wanted a good sequel.
Just a word of warning to people to not do what I did. Because I was trying to find an ATM to withdraw money and find parking, I didn’t have time to go to the bathroom before I went in because we were already late. I ended up having to hold it in for the entire runtime and it was too unbearable sometime after the climax, but I didn’t want to go to the bathroom because I didn’t want to miss anything important. Because theaters now have reclining seats, that didn’t help, so I had to get out of my seat and stand near the entrance, which did help, but it was still bad. Once the movie was over, I bolted to the bathroom, so make sure to use the bathroom before watching the movie.