visiting alice and emily in DC for the weekend. will be back late sunday night. i am reachable by cell phone.


Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines

They tried, I'll give them that. It's not a bad movie, it could have been alot worse. Does anybody remember Jurassic Park 3? Compared to any normal movie without expectations, this film fares well. It is a solid decently entertaining action suspense movie. Unfortunately it is not any old normal movie. THIS is a Terminator movie, and in that realm it is cursed to be satisfactory. This movie is by far the weakest of the three. It does not even come CLOSE to any ballpark or football field to T2. I knew it wouldn't, but I just had to see it to be sure. This movie is not terrible, but it just lacks. It's predecessors were heavyweights, made of metal. Here we get a slicked up version for the 21st century, made of lightweight futuristic liquid.... uh... polymer. I would rate T2 at 100%, T1 at 90%, and T3 at about 75%. In comparison to recent summer action movies, my rubric stands at: Matrix Reloaded > Terminator 3 > X-Men 2 > 2 Fast 2 Furious > Hulk. Some people may disagree that X-Men was alot better than this movie, but the margin setting T3 apart from X-Men is small and mostly determined by the fact that it was more serious, more hardcore action, less PG-13, and in general less cartoony. The margin setting T3 apart from Matrix Reloaded is larger but not by much. The Matrix Reloaded was not a great movie either, if they pushed it any more it could have gone on the shelf with Attack of the Clones. Don't tell me you couldn't tell that freeway chase was computer generated.

The inherent problem with T3 is that the concept is contrived and repetitive. It is essentially a rehash of the first two movies with a story that doesn't seem important enough to be told. Steve Chiang commented that it almost seemed like a spin-off. A side story. They didn't HAVE to make this movie. You can almost smell how its forced. Arnold got greedy and Mario Kassar got greedy. Cameron knew there wasn't enough creative merit in the project. They said fuck him and made it anyway. Either way they win, people will see this movie no matter what, if just to prove to themselves that its bad - hey I did. The shallow ones will even enjoy it.

What makes T3 lesser than T2 or T1? Let's refer to T2 since it was the most recent Terminator film and an improvement of Cameron's vision over T1. One of the most important things is lighting. T2 was entirely bathed in cold blue light, with contrasts of red. This movie is not. In contest to other reviews on the Internet, this movie is not darker. The entire film takes place in broad daylight, or brightly lit indoors. Mastow you IDIOT! A Terminator is a harbinger of death, it shouldn't be bathed in white angelic light! Second, music. Marco Beltrami's score? More like underscore. This guy also scored the Scream movies, he is not qualified to score the Terminator series. The music does not accent the film heartily as Brad Fidel's music did in T2. Mastow thought Fidel's music made you think of T2 too much, but guess what? Mastow's an IDIOT. You barely notice Beltrami's score. In my opinion it served no function but as a standard movie accessory which didn't help nor hurt; it was merely a necessary accompaniment. My third complaint is the T-X. She is hot. Too bad that's not the purpose of a Terminator. Menacing she is not. Bland she is. Robert Patrick was hundreds of times more threatening as the T-1000, and unstoppable. I remember feeling dread everytime he got back up in T2. I did not get too much of the 'Oh my God, she absolutely will not stop' feeling from Kristanna Loken. I also felt she was underused much in the same manner as Lady Deathstryke in X-Men 2 and the Twins in Matrix Reloaded. There was a one sentence explanation given about why she can control other machines, but it got ridiculous when she controlled a squad of police cars. There was no explanation to why her arms are Skynet Swiss Army Knives, and disappointingly no explanation about why Skynet sent back a female Terminator this time (and one with an endoskeleton at that! isn't that one step down the evolutionary ladder?). Fourth, the ending was anticlimactic. There was no big final shootout. And you know how in high school English they taught us about that point in the story where everything hits rock bottom for the protagonist before getting resolved? Well I must've missed it here because Mastow glazed over it so fast and skipped straight into that anticlimactic ending. It was quite unsatisfying, and a cop-out reason to leave loose ends open for a T4, which they better not make. I'll ride out on Mastow with Los before I let it get to that. Last but not least, it was a bit too funny. Every one-liner that came out of Arnold's mouth was a joke. WTF. They did it way too many times. This undermined the tone and momentum of the movie.

Anyways, after seeing T3 I can finally sleep well tonight, knowing full well that T2 is still unbeatable.



waited 12 years for this movie. followed every news clip about it since april 2002. suddenly poised on the sickening feeling that its gonna SUCK. gayyy.


i know why the caged bird sings.

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