The ‘Terminator’ saga has received a lot of criticism since James Cameron, its creator, abandoned it after the second installment. In Hollywood, they were not going to stop trying to make the franchise profitable due to the absence of its creator and in this time we have seen three sequels that also failed to conquer the public, also serving to incite distrust towards Terminator: Dark Fate.
Sold as a direct sequel to ‘Terminator 2: Judgment Day’, this sixth installment had the added incentive of Cameron’s involvement and Linda Hamilton’s return as Sarah Connor. For our part, we have enjoyed all the films in the saga to a greater or lesser extent, but we have no choice but to support those first opinions that placed the ‘Dark Fate’ as the best since the second part.
‘Terminator: Dark Fate’ is not an innovative film - we don't think anyone expected it, but better make it totally clear. It almost seems that those involved have taken note of the complaints received by the previous three deliveries and for this, they have chosen to recover the most emblematic elements of the two first films to build this one.
The funny thing is that the main novelties come from the hand of two old acquaintances: the plots of Hamilton and Arnold Schwarzenegger are an evolution compared to what we already knew, also giving us an additional reason to get emotionally involved in what happens on the screen. Do not expect anything too deep, but it does provide the necessary human touch so that the repetitive nature of the film never turns against it.
In ‘Terminator: Dark Fate’ we see how a Terminator is sent to the past to try to end the life of the character that can complicate Legion's victory, the successor to Skynet. There are no surprises out there, but there is another fundamental return to recover the DNA of the franchise: the adult approach.
Many things can be added to a franchise like ‘Terminator’, but the R rating in the United States should never have been dispensed with. We are talking about a killing machine coming from the future willing to do anything to fulfill its mission. In ‘Terminator: Dark Fate’ there is blood, violence, and foul words. All this perfectly integrated into the script so that the story progresses or simply so that the characters remain the ones we knew.
From there we found a kind of reboot that relies heavily on the past, including winks at various times of the first two deliveries. Luckily, they are not empty tributes, since Tim Miller executes the action scenes with great precision, allowing the viewer to enjoy them instead of trying to give the illusion of spectacle through the assembly and use the special effects to complement in place as a rationale for them. Here the money invested looks, but it is fair to recognize that Miller does not have the same inventiveness as Cameron.
It's time to enhance the female presence in the cast. Of the five main characters, three are women and the script signed by David S. Goyer, Justin Rhodes and Billy Ray manage them very well to avoid falling into repetitive impulses - Natalia Reyes's character could have simply been a new Sarah Connor and not is the case-. This gives the film some more personality.
In this way, ‘Terminator: Dark Fate’ works like more than just a great hobby of action and science fiction because we understand their motivations and the changes they are suffering throughout the film better. Hamilton herself commented recently that the failure of the previous three installments is that she neglected that point, that the key was to have few characters that you care about.
Nor are the small drops of humor here and there to lighten tensions, small dramatic moments to give more depth to the story and a very successful rhythm to prevent one from ever getting bored in his armchair. It lacks a little more risk to reach the first two deliveries, with which the comparison is inevitable, but by itself, it is already one of the best blockbusters of what we have in 2019.
‘Terminator: Dark Fate’ is very good entertainment in which the best of the saga is recovered to create a film that risks virtually nothing, but in return, it does everything in a solvent way. Hamilton's return as Sarah Connor has a lot to do with the resurgence of the franchise, but in general, everything works fine. It simply lacks a little more inventiveness.