Reviewed by: Jay Levitz
“The Terminator” series paints a rather bleak picture of the future of mankind. What’s the truth? Is there HOPE for humanity? Answer
Death in the Bible
VIOLENCE—How does viewing violence in movies affect families? Answer
|Featuring||Arnold Schwarzenegger, Nick Stahl as John Connor, Kristanna Loken, Claire Danes, See all »|
|Producer||C-2 Pictures, Intermedia Films, IMF Internationale Medien und Film GmbH & Co. 3. Produktions KG, Mostow/Lieberman Productions, Andrew G. Vajna, Mario Kassar, Joel B. Michaels, Colin Wilson, Moritz Borman, Guy East, Nigel Sinclair|
Rooting for robots
Terminator 3 is thus named, as it’s the third in a series of highly successful action films, the first produced in the ’80s, the second in the ’90s, and now comes the third in what looks to be an even longer saga. In each film, lone representatives from the future, one sent to murder, the other sent to save, wage war over the life of John Connor. In The Terminator, John was not yet born, in “T2: Judgment Day” he was an adolescent, and, in this installment, he’s a young adult getting ready to fulfill his Savior-like destiny.
All three films have had high production values, mixing amazing stunts and explosions with a story of desperate survival against seemingly invinsible machine-enemies (the Terminator robots from the future). All three are rated R for extreme violence, continuous profanity, and some nudity (non-sexual in the case of “T3”).
What is new in “T3” is its director, Jonathan Mostow (U571, Beverly Hills Bodysnatchers), replacing the series creator James Cameron (Titanic, Pirhana 2). Plus, this time Arnold Schwarzenegger’s Good Terminator is pitted against a Female-Disguised(!) Terminator killer. Maybe the filmmakers were expecting laughter when Arnie smashes a urinal over his female enemy’s head? Or when he plunges her head into a toilet? Or… you get the idea.
If you feel entertained watching teenagers being shot to death point-blank in their homes and fast food restaurants; if you get your kicks watching countless cars and their drivers colliding, flipping, and exploding; if you’ve ever dreamed of slaughtering a roomful of office workers with a machine gun, then maybe “T3” is your film of choice. To learn more about the effects of violence on viewers, click here.
If honest and thoughtful character counts in the heroes you’re asked to root for; if you enjoy a good story that is not simply “Hero Runs From, Fights, and Runs More From Evil Woman Robot” for nearly two straight hours; if you have a brain in your head, then sprint away, don’t walk, from any date, group, or impulse that tries to guide you into seeing “T3”. This film is not “just action.” It’s pointless mayhem dressed up as an apocalyptic warning and, as such, a waste of your time, money, and Hollywood’s imagination.
Please don’t send a message with your ticket-purchase that you’re craving more of the same drivel.
“T3” pictures human beings as victims of their own computers—unable to harness their technology from becoming “self-aware” and, therefore, at war with men. To learn more about the moment when humans themselves became “self-aware” and began their own war against a different kind of adversary, click here.
And if you’re still itching for some action, go rent “The Right Stuff”, a great American epic about the beginning of our space program, when men pushed machines to their limits and inspired a generation. (Although, beware that this PG-rated film has some objectionable profanity and minor sexual references.)
See list of Relevant Issues—questions-and-answers.