Monday Morning Critic – Terminator: Genisys, Arnold Schwarzenegger & The Dangers of Becoming an Actor Without a Role


The early reviews for Ridley Scott’s Exodus are pretty awful, and my first thoughts were to mock the film (and Hollywood) because Christian Bale is playing a Jewish superhero from the Old Testament, but the thing that struck me most this week was the first trailer for the Terminator relaunch. And oh boy … it was insanely awful that tons of thoughts came into my mind, especially after watching Sabotage on DVD this week.

Here’s the trailer, below, in case you missed it.

The film is essentially a reboot of the franchise, as we begin with Reese being sent back to save Sarah Connor in the 1980s, as we now have the same cheat that J.J Abrams’ Star Trek had. The original timeline has been changed and now we’re in an alternate reality, thus now we can toy around with the same concept but not have to stay true to established cinema. Thus an entire new realm opens up to explore and you can do what X-Men: Days of Future Past did: effectively wipe out franchise killing misfires of films. Genisys is there to effectively wipe out both post-James Cameron films, Rise of the Machines and Salvation, from the Terminator lexicon.

It says something about how awful X-Men: The Last Stand was that they created an entire new trilogy to wipe it out of the cinematic canon of the men of X.

It was fairly awful, though, but this has become par for the course for Arnold Schwarzenegger as of late. The familiar path of being an action star has led him to where he is now. It’s actually the same spot that John Wayne found himself in towards the end of his career, as well: an actor without a role that suits his talents, abilities and position in Hollywood.

TEN RZ PRINTS Arnold fires from atop truck Nov 19 2012 xl CH__0519.tif

That’s the one thing that came through fairly clearly in the latest Terminator trailer, which looks like it’ll be one of 2015’s worst films (and probably flop, too), the one thing that felt the worst about it was that Arnold Schwarzenegger looked so out of place as the badass T-800 felt like an oddity in the time-traveling adventure. And it was the same feeling most people got during The Last Stand, Sabotage, Escape Plan and his cameo appearance in The Expendables 3.

The nostalgia is over … and Arnold has nothing left to offer as an action star.

I remember writing about Arnold’s potential comeback path three years ago and the biggest thing I worried about then is resuming his career as an action hero and assuming people would come out in mass without a problem. So far Arnold is a clear league below even someone from a comic book film in terms of the action movie pecking order, as he has yet to cross $50 million domestically and his only film to cross $100 million worldwide was Escape Plan with Sylvester Stallone. And even that was mainly international grosses, going under $30 million domestically.

Terminator: Genisys feels like once more into that “Arnold is still a star” motif … but it feels like it’ll be a signature failure as opposed to the smaller failures he’s had so far. Arnold is still a star but he’s not the man anymore. It’s becoming apparent that people don’t want to pay money to see him … which is very sad.

Stuff for General George S. Pimpage, Esq

Pulse Wrestling asked me for my thoughts on CM Punk in the UFC. Click here.

I looked at Into the Storm on Blu-Ray.

Mike Noyes reviewed Demons and the original Batman TV Series.

And now on MMC … we watch Rich Piana do shrugs. I like his way, with a closer grip, when I do barbell shrugs.

If you want to pimp anything email it to me with a good reason why. It helps to bribe me with stuff, just saying ….

A Movie A Week – The Challenge


This week’s DVD Netflix Recommended ViewingI’m Sorry You Feel That Way

“Bill Burr is the balls.”

That’s about the only thing I can really say about Burr, arguably the best stand up working now and star of a substantive podcast, a supporting role in Breaking Bad and one of the funniest people in pop culture right now. And now he’s released a direct to Netflix special, I’m Sorry You Feel That Way, which went live Friday.

It’s interesting to see Burr go direct to Netflix, which is comparable to DTV these days BUT with one exception. Going to Netflix is actually almost better than going into theatres these days for a lot of films. An audience will be there, based off the tens of millions of subscribers to the service , and a quick push of a button gets any title in front of someone instantaneously for the option to view.

Burr as always is absolutely hysterical. This is one of those specials you’re going to have to pause a couple times because you’re going to miss some good laughs because Burr is FIRING on all cylinders. I haven’t laughed this hard in ages. Burr right now is just killing it, stand up wise, and if you aren’t a fan you should be.

Highest recommendation possible.

What Looks Good This Weekend, and I Don’t Mean the $2 tall boys of Red Fox and community college co-eds with low standards at the Fox and Hound

Exodus: Gods and Kings – Ridley Scott’s version of the biblical tale of Moses.

Skip It – This is getting torched in early reviews and word of mouth isn’t much better.

Top Five – Chris Rock plays a thinly veiled version of himself reflecting on his life in NYC, talking to a reporter for a feature.

See It – This might be that breakthrough film for Rock as a director.

Inherent Vice – PT Anderson’s film noir piece. In Limited Release.

See It – So far it’s getting strong review and PT Anderson is fairly reliable in terms of making good cinema.

Scott “Kubryk” Sawitz brings his trademarked irreverence and offensive hilarity to Twitter in 140 characters or less. Follow him @ScottSawitz .

Tags: , , , ,

Join our newsletter

never miss the latest news, reviews, live event coverage, audio podcasts, exclusive interviews and commentary for Movies, TV, Music, Sports, Comics, Video Games!