The Terminator came “BAAACK” this summer, 25 years after the original film and 6 years since the most recent sequel.
Unfortunately, it wasn’t really worth the wait.
The main character in “Terminator Salvation” is a grown-up John Connor (played by Christian Bale) who continues to lead the resistance against the Terminator robots. Connor and the other remaining humans on Earth are also trying to protect teenager Kyle Reece, who will grow-up to become Connor’s father and lead the resistance movement, if he lives that long. The new key character to the story is a half-man/half-machine who could either be a good guy or a bad guy – Terminator or Hero.
The first 30-minutes of “Terminator Salvation” features some so-so special effects, but after that things get a lot better. The acting from Bale, Anton Yelchin (who plays Reece) and Sam Worthington (as the combo man/machine) is o.k. and the story, even for someone who didn’t see any of the previous “Terminator” films, is pretty easy to follow. There’s a brief explanation of the storyline at the beginning of the film and that really helped.
“Salvation” isn’t as much fun or as exciting two of the year’s other sci-fi action films: “X-Men Origins: Wolverine” or “Star Trek”. There isn’t enough suspense and the Terminator robots aren’t that interesting.
“Terminator Salvation” is rated PG-13, mostly for all the action-violence, but it’s nothing that most kids haven’t seen before in other movies. There’s no bad language or adult situations. I say the film is appropriate for most kids 8 and up.
On The Official Kid Critic Report Card, “Terminator Salvation” gets a C+.
If you’re a big fan of the series you’ve got to see it, and you’ll probably want to buy it so you can watch the DVD extras over and over. If not, it’s worth a rental or PPV, but only after you’ve seen the other options from the summer class of 2009.