Monday, April 18, 2011

John and the Terminator with Arnold's head

HBO is some shiesty little tricksters. They gave me HBO for free long enough to watch the pilot for Game of Thrones, which was really good, and reminded me that they also have True Blood and Entourage. So now I have HBO.

So I'm waiting until it's time to take my new puppy to meet the doctor for the first time and I turn on HBO, and they're showing Terminator Salvation. Now I posted about this movie when I saw it in the theater, but I neglected to mention one scene that to me epitomizes the flaws in this film.

At the end of the movie, when they're running around in the Terminator factory, John Connor gets knocked back by a door flying open, and behind that door stands Arnold (or a facsimile thereof), the original Terminator, the machine who once tried to kill John's mom. But all John ever knew of him was as a friend. The Arnold Terminator saved his life countless times and sacrificed himself for the greater good. If you pretend number 3 didn't exist, which is my preferred way of thinking, then the last time John saw his buddy he was giving the thumbs up on the way to his death. All for John.

So it's years later and John's in the middle of this big battle and he's very stressed out trying to find his dad who's not his dad yet, and suddenly there he is, the only father figure John ever knew. Hey, there would have been a cool theme to pursue given the whole John's about to be a dad and he's looking for his dad and then his dad is kind of fostering a little girl, but somehow that didn't seem like a theme.

Anyway, so John sees, for the first time in a decade or more, his best childhood friend. And John doesn't even take a fucking second to react. He just starts fighting.

What an opportunity that was. You've got this Terminator who hasn't even experienced all these things that John has, he doesn't know his fate, doesn't know this man he will save in the past, and here's someone who does know all the good and bad things he will do, all this history and yet not history between them, and not even a tiny fraction of it is explored.

Why'd they go through the trouble and expense of putting Arnold on that dude's body? Because it was cool. Because in his big moment, audiences would go Ooooooh cool! Not because it matter to the story AT ALL.

It could have mattered to the story. John would have known it wasn't his friend of course, but that doesn't mean he wouldn't need a second to process it, or have doubts, or think he should run instead of fight, because what if he kills the Terminator? The past will never happen. He will never be born, or maybe they'll send a different one that succeed in killing his mother. Maybe some part of this Terminator IS the hero he knew. After all, he never met the bad guy version. Maybe he thinks he can talk the Terminator into doing the right thing. Maybe....

But nope. All they do is fight. Then we move on.

Squandered potential.



    Sarah Connor is boffing her brother.


    Kinda funny that you're talking about Game of Thrones and T4 -- and all I could think was that the TV Sarah Connor needs to dye her eyebrows to match her blonde hair in Game of Thrones.

    I'm totally sold on the series, but it's weird seeing some very high production value and some very low. The animal carcasses, the Flintstone-esque plastic meat in the feast, the painfully obvious wigs on several characters. C'mon now HBO.

    Anyway, yes T4 is a turdfest. The biggest mistake is that the A-list actor took the least interesting part. And then had those in charge build the script around his character.

    I honestly don't think they thought that much about Arnold. I think they took the assembly line approach, like there's a gazillion Arnold's stepping off conveyor belts at any one time -- which totally does not make any sense that their INFILTRATION units ALL LOOK IDENTICAL.

    But whatever.

    Like looking for the edible kernel's of corn in a runny pile of crap. :)

  2. I used to think you find cat pics based on the blog you plan to write. Now I'm convinced that you blog based on the cat pics you like.

  3. Hah! The truth is, whenever I find a cat pic I think might be relevant to a future post I save it to a file. Then for every post I go into my cat picture file and choose a photo that matches the post. Sometimes I get lucky. This was one of those times.

  4. Honestly, I walked out of Terminator Salvation wondering if the film makers even HAD a script to shoot from.

    Having said that, I truly believe Terminator Salvation is the first studio film to actually be too fast paced to be coherent or even interesting. I remember spending the finale counting the seconds between editing cuts rather than trying to follow the action.

  5. Can you find a picture of two cats, a boy cat and a girl cat, by an airport hangar? Because I'd love to engage in a conversation about Casablanca.


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