4 June 2013

Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines

Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines 2003
  • Director: Jonathan Mostow
  • Based on book: No
  • Cast: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Nick Stahl, Claire Danes, Kristana Loken, David Andrews, Mark Famiglietti
  • Personal “oh yeah him/her” reaction, i.e. have seen this actor/actress in:
    • Arnold Schwarzenegger –Dave, Twins
    • Nick Stahl  In the Bedroom, The Thin Red Line
    • Claire Danes – Romeo and Juliet, Little Women, Stardust, The Hours, Igby Goes Down, Les Misérables (1998), To Gillian on Her 37th Birthday
    • David Andrews – Fight Club
  • Why bought: Continuing the saga
  • Seen: March 28, 2013

  
What’s with the cars? All those car/truck/motorcycle chases started to get old in the second one already.  Here it’s just boring.
The new bad-guy terminator is a woman who is very like Beatrice the hubot (robot) in the Swedish TV series Real People (Äkta människor), only the Swedish Beatrice is so much more interesting.  Making this Terminator a supposedly sexy female is as boring as the cars and as ho-hum gender stereotypical.  Linda Hamilton, please come back!
Claire Danes is an unexpected heroine. This role is a far cry from Juliet and Beth (I haven’t seen her in Homeland). She’s good and she gives the role her best. I don’t know Nick Stahl so well but he’s fine too as the cute grown-up but still boyish John Connor.
The film is funny. I like the Gary Glitter/Elton John sunglasses Schwarzenegger finds, tries on and rejects. The best line is a cop ordering the Terminator, in a rather wavering voice, “Drop your weapon! …er…and your coffin.”
As a whole though the film is full of repeats from the first two and not nearly as exciting. It’s actually grimmer because the war does break out and the machines take over. John and Kate survive and movie 4 can be made.
There is small philosophical – dare I say political? – touch at the end showing that the weapons we have created to protect ourselves have now destroyed us. It lifts the film a centimeter or two above simple (if there is such a thing) sci-fi action and though it smacks of smug truism rather than a challenge to start a (carry on the) disarmament movement, it adds a ½ * to the score.


2 ½ * of 5.

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