Blair Russell’s review published on Letterboxd:
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I realize my rating is overly harsh, but at the same time it is not unwarranted. I think one issue is that not just in movies but in other fields also, they used to make them better than they do now... music, sports, television, etc. In the future I'll have to extrapolate more on the topic-for now, I will say that whether it's the pretentious indie/foreign pictures or how lame and boring too much of Hollywood has become, I tend to prefer the older movies or the modern pictures that don't try so hard or aren't insufferably smug. Because Hollywood is too scared to try old ideas, they brought the T-800 out of mothballs yet again, even though many believe that the same time the series was worthwhile, it was almost 30 years ago and the subsequent sequels have just been a waste of time.
The trailers did not inspire confidence and even though I haven't even viewed all of the sequels, I do love the first two, the true Sarah Connor has returned and how bad could this be? Oh did I ever find this out! The movie was even worse than I first realized after I saw some videos on YouTube and discovered that the story makes no damn sense in the least; it was devoid of logic, and such things usually aggravate me to no end. In hindsight, some of the stupid Hollywood pictures I've seen in recent years... I was way too kind to them and more deserved a bottom of the barrel rating like this does.
Like most Terminator movies, an unstoppable force from the future has come to try an assassinate a target and a less powerful force has also arrived from the future in an attempt to protect said target. By now, talk about lame and unoriginal; this is rather close to T2 and believe me, T2 is MUCH better than this crap. The characters, the effects (too much of which looked rather ropey and not convincing), the action beats, the plot, the logic behind the plot, having sympathy for the protagonists... massively inferior to Judgment Day. Not only do important plot points crumble into pieces once you apply a modicum of common sense to them... I swear there is a scene which was supposed to be included but was missing! A bomb goes off, killing various people and knocking down our heroes... suddenly, it immediately cuts to our heroes in another location, captured yet I have no idea who or what brought them there. It was like the movie went from A to D and skipped steps B & C.
Not only I am penalizing the movie for that, but to me far worse was how the character of Sarah Connor was treated. While watching the movie she came off as unappealing with her attitude and that made me mad due to how great the character was in the original movies and how inspirational she was as she morphed from a down on her luck waitress to a badass who was taught by great warrior Kyle Reese and she passed on those traits and general leadership to John Connor... and here she was jut an angry old lady who kept on arguing with augmented human Grace, because both are women (?!)... hell, I dunno.
By now many people know that a shocking moment happens in the opening minutes and I dare not spoil that here... even though by now it is easy to accidentally stumble upon this spoiler; thankfully this realization did not occur until after I viewed the film yesterday. I don't agree with that decision, especially after the rest of the movie happened and I realized this was a crap movie which told the same story but in a poor way where there are massive plotholes & like with too many movies these days, there is unnecessary humor and most of it was terrible. Hell, I say that the fact that T2's critical message of “Choose your own fate” is tossed away here and the movie teaches us something entirely contradictory just for the sake of “being different”... thankfully I'll be happy to ignore this in my personal canon and keep on pretending that only the first two movies happened, where fate is what you make it is still a thing.
I could go on and on but I'll close this out by saying that both the new and old cast do try their hardest, I suppose... “generic teenage girl” is no John Connor and there being more diversity here does not matter too much for me when I am not sure all the right people were chosen for the roles and broached topics of “technology intruding on modern society” and “Mexican immigration” are only addressed superficially. This stupid movie makes me better appreciate actual worthwhile big budget modern action movies... look at how awesome Mission Impossible: Fallout turned out. Doctor Sleep being different in style compared to The Shining won't make everyone happy... be that as it may, I imagine more would have been unhappy if King wrote the Doctor Sleep novel as adult Danny Torrance returning to the Overlook Hotel w/ his family and the exact same scenario occurs... I am glad that went in a different direction, and thankfully that was done well. Look at The Predator (one of those movies I'd rate far lower now) as it's an original story involving the property... but was not good as there was WAY too much humor and way too many illogical moments.
I guess this is what I get for actually giving this money and wasting part of yesterday with another example of a piss-poor Hollywood product.