Monday, April 18, 2005

so... she's an anti-Terminator Terminator [april 16, 2005]

Two things were instrumental in Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines finding its place in my movie queue: the first was a newsgroup thread about how even the faithful "widescreen" version on DVDs often failed to match the theatrical version (and how the "fullscreen" version was a closer approximation) [this was a movie mentioned in that thread] (b) Sudarshan's comment that this movie had an ending that was superior to the endings of most sci-fi/fantasy flicks. I agree with (a) and (b). The ending definitely seems like the work of someone else, while the rets of the film is a tired compilation of clichés, action sequences that in themselves are wonderfully done, but fail to serve the global cause. And how much novelty can a variation on the popular quote offer (she'll be back). I'm not sure how making the Terminator a woman added to the plot (except from the POV of asset display). Some of F/X were so obviously fake I kept thinking of the first X-Men movie. The introduction of the flying machines in the opening was nicely done, IMHO. And there's a cute bit about John Connor dying in 2032 on the fourth of July (aka independence day). What is also very obvious is how the obvious references to the first two films (especially in terms of characters and the people playing them) are elided. You don't see Sarah Connor (Linda Hamilton) (conveniently, she's dead) although there are references to her; you don't see Kyle Reese (Michael Biehn) either. And I'm not sure if they even mentioned Cyberdyne. Brad Fiedel's familiar theme (abused in the Ghulam previews) appears only during the end credits. Aah well, hopefully the series has been laid to rest. A more intellectually satisfying version of this film definitely exists, and perhaps only market failure of the franchise might persuade someone to make a sequel with more artistic integrity and less emphasis on the box office.

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