I just saw “Terminator: Genisys” yesterday, and while I liked it more than “Terminator 3” (though that’s not much of a stretch) and what little I bothered to see of “Salvation”, I have HUGE issues with it as an entry to the series.
Most people by now know that the basic plot is essentially a re-imagining of the events of the first and second Terminator films. I was never overly invested in the series beyond the first two movies, so the little nods to them were appreciated. The problem is that this franchise has become more confusing than “Back to the Future” and “Doctor Who” combined (for me at least). I think a lot of the issue stems from this series trying to keep a stable time loop. “Genisys” is the worst offender by far, as not only does it mess with the original continuity but also creates more questions than answers. And when you’re trying to do a time loop, you’re bound to run into plot holes. This one has both in terms of the original continuity and the “new” continuity it sets up.
Considering my lack of investment with the series, I went in with low expectations. But even that couldn’t save me from questioning things throughout the movie. Don’t get me wrong – there were SOME things I liked (Emilia Clarke was good as Sarah, nice to see Arnold again, good action, Matt Smith pulled off a pretty good American accent). I also tried really hard to not let too much of the previous movies seep in and attempted to enjoy it as a sci-fi/action flick. But that’s the problem – if you HAVE seen any of the previous movies, you can’t help pointing out the plot holes and references. Time and time again, I found myself focusing less on the plot and more on the problems it was creating, as well as the blatant Terminator 1 & 2 references. It took me out of the movie more times than I can count and ultimately made me feel like I didn’t have to see it again.
I knew from the trailers that “Genisys” was gonna be a doozy in terms of what it was trying to do and how it would affect the continuity, but the series just feels like it’s gone off the deep end by this point. I feel like it needs to be wrapped up for good (though that should’ve happened ages ago) because it’s just a complete mess of continuity issues now. I’ll gladly still watch the first two Terminator movies and enjoy them, but as far as I’m concerned, this series needs to stop coming back.