This is the latest attempt to tell the story of what comes after Judgment day, with this being the new direct canon sequel to Terminator 2. It follows a future where things somewhat went to plan, and now Sarah Connor (Linda Hamilton) hunts the machines that are sent back in time for basically sport. This tale is somewhat different however, it’s far later in the timeline than it should be, guess Skynet couldn’t finish humanity off. There’s a new threat, a greater one and that’s something for you to discover while watching.
There’s a new target, Dani (Natalia Reyes) and with that a new protector in the form of Grace (Mackenzie Davis). She’s a different sort of protector from the future, an augmented individual that’s still human yet something far greater. With the title of the film needing to be filled, we have a new super Terminator that’s a big evolution or change-up from what we’re used to. This one is a combination of a skeleton, and liquid form allowing there to be a double threat at once. It’s crazy, and honestly it’s puzzling how any future humans survive in that time.
Anyways, Dani is being hunted and this brings together a rather crazy team with a long past to help save her. There’s even some fun with Carl (Arnold Schwarzenegger) coming along, he’s the funny one.
This is certainly a narrative that comes across as convoluted to a degree, it explains everything and it feels dense. There’s a lot going on in this one and it’s basically straight action aside from small portions where they fill out some of the mysteries. This is definitely your standard Terminator film, they do not stray from the formula and just evolve things.
With this being largely action driven there are some massive set pieces. I’ll be honest that I’m sick of plane type scenarios, so that part was tiring. That aside, it felt rather intense and it delivered on that action. There were explosions, moments of terror and just one relentless machine on the hunt.
This film takes you far, and it goes fast in doing so. At the same time it felt long, but that aspect wasn’t too bad honestly. I wouldn’t say the length is at all a complaint, it just came across a dense with so much happening. I liked how they kept having issues show up, and the combination of team efforts against this latest Terminator. Its strange how some companies were rebranded, guess the old versions didn’t strike enough fear. I’m being vague, I don’t want to spoil this for those that do care and you’ll like the surprises.
The CGI is mostly solid here, some parts are iffy though generally you won’t notice any issues while viewing it. The acting was good for the most part, good old Carl brought some laughs and intensity. I also give full props to Linda Hamilton, she still kicks ass and was one badass this whole time through. Definitely a strong character, and a clear lead here. There was also some strange charm within our monstrous Terminator, it sure knows how to sweet talk its way through places which was different.
Terminator: Dark Fate doesn’t really do anything new with the formula of the series, but it will satisfy fans and is by far the best of the sequel attempts thus far. This is achieved by bringing back the old crew, giving them a deeper emotional purpose behind their mission and then meshing everyone together. There’s some sort of political notes in this one as well, but that’s largely hidden behind the mass chain of explosions that take place, or well the bodies that pile up.
The new Terminator is a menacing machine, they nailed that thing being practically invincible. I’m not sure they can get more intense, but they’ll likely find a way. If you’re a fan of the series, you won’t be disappointed as it does feel like just another entry. At the same time, it’s not at all a bad time. It has lots of action, it doesn’t waste time and it presents an awesome grizzled Sara Connor that goes all in.
I believe there will be some surprises along the way. The new hero I’m a bit hesitant on, I get why they picked them yet at the same time I don’t quite buy it either. I’m interested to see what they’d do with one that follows this, will have to wait and see if this is the one that does launch more of them.
Terminator: Dark Fate Review at Theater with Standard Viewing
Screening Provided by Paramount