Terminator Dark Fate is proof that the franchise is better off being terminated before its too late!
Arnold Schwarzenegger is back for the sixth installment of the much loved franchise. Interestingly enough, the sixth sequel follows the events of the 1991 installment “Terminator 2: Judgement Day”. The timelines are jumbled as past and future are intertwined. The idea sounds cool but does the sequel do justice to its predecessor? Sadly no. The inclusion of original cast along with introduction of new characters as well as James Cameron’s involvement couldn’t save this sinking ship. Read on to find out why.
Written and produced by James Cameron, the film primarily follows three women leads as they escape and later fight back a terminator from the future. The movie is mostly told from the perspective of Mackenzie Davis’ character Grace as she tries to rescue young Dani (Natalie Reyes). Sarah Conner (Linda Hamilton) is also present throughout the film but just as a supporting role.
On the other hand, Arnie also has a guest ‘appearance’. Even though he comes out as the knight in shinning armor saving the day, it goes without leaving much impact. His shining moment is just the final push, after Grace had already given the ultimate sacrifice and Dani had stepped up to do the deed. His presence in the film came off extremely incoherent with the rest of the screenplay and story line.The screenplay is poor to say the least, the film characters rarely go through much development and it has nothing to pique the interest of the audiences may they be new or old to the franchise.
Arnold was well in sync with his years old avatar. Gabriel Luna, as a cold heartless terminator focused to get the job done no matter, was again convincing. Coming towards the ladies, the film didn’t allow much character development as the story moved along, so besides the action performed by Davis (which she performed convincingly), there wasn’t much to her performance. Natalia Reynes, despite being in the pivotal role wasn’t given much to do throughout the film except her heroic episode towards the climax. Keeping that in mind her performance was fine. Linda Hamilton as a woman having formed a strong disconnect with humans and emotions due to her consequence was spot on.
Alot of work went into maintaining the looks of the characters. Both Linda and Davis have a very fit physique with the right amount of muscles for the characters they are playing. Linda deserves a special applause for molding her 60 something body this well for the role. Make up, wardrobe and special effects department’s creativity and aesthetics can be appreciated as they make the characters look spot on, leaving very little to imagination.
The movie has all the compulsory action film elements. Be it massive collisions, heavy armor, choppers crashing, highway accidents of great magnitude, blood and gore, or men dropping dead as collateral; all at the cost of one impossible to kill terminator chasing three women.
Despite it checking the right boxes for Hollywood’s much talked about need for inclusivity by making women the core of the film, the immense lack of originality and the film riding on nostalgia of a done and dusted instalment, is hard to ignore. The latest offering didn’t have the true essence of a Terminator film.
If Tim Miller’s attempt was to glorify the 1990 film in particular or the franchise in general, it was poorly executed. He takes the screenplay and doesn’t give anything impressive enough to keep audiences engaged throughout the film. Beside this, incorporation of political reference in form of undocumented immigrants, along with futuristic elements in keeping with the theme of the franchise, ends up as a chaotic unimpressive film. While, running two timelines back and forth is a good idea, it seemed a bit too much in case of Dark Fate. The film comes off a just being an extension of T2 which can be skipped. Once the face of the franchise i.e. Arnold Schwarzenegger, seemed wasted in this film as well. In short,Miller’s vision behind the film seemed unclear.
The franchise which is being carried over since 80’s may have been modified to the current era’s requirements but in doing so one can’t help but question whether it was worth the effort. For the franchise to retain its once much deserved glory, it might as well be terminated on the whole instead of continuing with below par sequels.
Shortly after the Men In Black: International fiasco, one can’t help but think once again we witnessed a Hollywood franchise attempting to pass on the torch to newbies and proved to be a let down. With little to none expectations with the latest Charlie’s Angels movie, we hope for a film to help us let go our skepticism when it comes to reboots and sequel before the year ends!