Visionary director Tim Miller joins forces with the mastermind that is James Cameron as they resurrect and reinterpret the all-star Terminator franchise in a brand new light in Terminator: Dark Fate. And this is one blockbuster that brings the boom.
More than two decades after the events of Terminator 2: Judgment Day, Sarah Connor (Linda Hamilton) sets out to protect a young woman named Dani Ramos (Natalia Reyes) and her friends as a liquid metal Terminator, Rev 9 (Gabriel Luna), sent from the future attempts to terminate them.
Applying his considerable talent for creativity to the Terminator franchise, Tim Miller (Deadpool) steps up to the plate in a big way with Terminator: Dark Fate and pulls the franchise in a brand new direction. Entirely retconning everything that came after Terminator 2: Judgment Day, Miller and producer James Cameron go back to basics and the result is a film that brings it all back to the pure chase-pursuit action of Cameron’s original films. Turning to his background, Miller amps up the visuals here, and the film’s action scenes jump off the screen thanks to his visualisation. Like Cameron before him, Miller uses action to build on action and the result is a narrative that keeps you guessing moment to moment.
Alongside the return of James Cameron, Terminator: Dark Fate also sees the return of the legendary Linda Hamilton as Sarah Conner and she’s an all-together different woman than we first met in the first Terminator films. After a shocking event in her past, Hamilton’s Sarah has hardened even further and has made it her life’s mission to hunt down Terminators who cross over into our present and she’s a battle-hardened warrior whose damn capable with the big guns. There’s a lot to be excited about with Hamilton’s return as Sarah Conner and the actress gives a very capable and human performance here as she exhibits a wide range of emotions and goes through a very interesting journey throughout the film. It’s great to see that she’s still the same badass that we remember from Terminator 2: Judgment Day and Terminator: Dark Fate is definitely her movie.
Facing down Sarah, and our other lead actresses who include future augmented soldier Grace (Mackenzie Davis) and new target Dani Ramos (Natalia Reyes) is an all-new breed of Terminator class called the Rev-9. This highly adaptable killer is an expert at replicating human characteristics and its unique liquid metal/exoskeleton frame makes it a lethal adversary that cannot be stopped! Bringing the Rev-9 to life is Gabriel Luna, and he brings a scary sense of malice to the big screen as the Rev-9. With Luna’s performance you buy into the idea that this is an unstoppable killing machine that won’t slow down nor cannot be reasoned with and Luna’s presence in the film is one of its key highlights. He makes for a very memorable villain here and it’s great to see him carve out his own space in the film’s dynamic action sequences.
And finally I can’t talk about Terminator: Dark Fate without mentioning the return of the boss himself, the one and only Arnold Schwarzenegger who is back on the big screen as the T-800…and it’s damn awesome to see him back in action! While Arnie is always an in-demand badass, what makes him so cool this time in Terminator: Dark Fate is how Miller and Cameron have updated the idea of the T-800 and Arnie’s performance as this cybernetic hero is a credit to his status and ability as an action star. Schwarzenegger also dives headfirst into the action again, and it’s a lot of fun to see him stand next to Hamilton’s Sarah Conner as they open up on the Rev-9 and try to correct the future once again. I knew Arnie would be back….and I’m damn pleased in how he’s returned here!
There’s a hell of a lot of action to keep audiences entertained here, and Miller and Cameron once again use it as a way to expand their narrative and push the movie forward. This film begins with breakneck speed with a full-on car chase scene, but for my money, the film’s climatic cargo plane/dam fight is really where the bulk of the action is carried out and the resulting images, along with the mano-o-mano rumble fight between the T-800 and the Rev-9 is sure to get your adrenaline cranked right up!
Both returning fans and those new to the franchise will have a really fun ride with Terminator: Dark Fate and it’s awesome to see the return and team-up of Linda Hamilton and Arnold Schwarzenegger on the big screen once again in one kickass action cinema blockbuster event.
Image: 20th Century Fox