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Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines (2003)

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With a reported budget of $172 million,Terminator 3: Rise of the Machinesstarts in high gear and never slows down. The apocalyptic "Judgment Day" ofT2was never prevented, only postponed: John Connor (Nick Stahl, replacingT2's Edward Furlong), now 22 … see full wiki

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1 review about Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines (2003)

Bad Casting Was Its Downfall

  • Jun 10, 2009
The Terminator idea is something of great intrigue to me and although it may seem extremely farfetched and even a bit bizarre that I would believe such a thing, I do actually think a machine uprising is a possibility. We as a race strive to create more advanced machines every day; machines that are capable of independent thought and maintenance are just around the corner. There is no denying that if we continue to create more and more intelligent machines and rely more on the interweaving network systems we currently have in place, there will come a point, in my eyes, not too far in the future that machines will realise humans are obsolete and realise that no longer need us around. I know it's weird, but it's the way I think. I also think Scientology isn't as bizarre as the media would have us believe. Let's make one thing clear, I'm not a Scientologist or a recluse nerd, I just think in weird ways.

The original Terminator movie kicked off a truly brilliant series that lead to the triumphant sequel, subtitled Judgment Day. Nobody thought it could ever be topped and in many ways, with T3, they were right. It received quite critical reviews upon its original release and even had some people hating the very idea of making it a trilogy. Considering the age of Schwarzenegger, it was originally rumoured that he may not be able to be cast in this movie, and because of that rumour, the films production was condemned immediately. Luckily Arnie was able to participate in the movie, and actually got himself into shape and looking the way he did 10 years ago.

T3 is set roughly 10 years after the events of Judgment Day and now another enemy of the future is sent back to assassinate the leader of the future resistance against the machines, John Connor. Not only is it John now in the firing line, but it's also the other members of the resistance, including Johns future wife, Katherine Brewster. The new enemy is the most advanced Terminator yet. Known as the T-X or Terminatrix, this female Terminator, played by Kristanna Loken is the most brutal machine to date. She can create any weapon from her arms and just appears more heartless than any machine could possibly be. John is once again protected by a new T-101 (Arnie) and is told that the Judgment Day he thought he stopped was merely postponed and is actually inevitable. Now with the help of the new T-101, Katherine & John must keep away from the T-X and try to find her father who is heading Skynet to try and find a new way of trying the prevent the Rise of the Machines.

There is quite a bit that can be said negatively about this film, but there's also a bit of good to talk about as well. One of the biggest criticisms I have is the casting of Nick Stahl as John Connor. I don't mind Nick Stahl as an actor, but as the rebellious John Connor, he's simply not the right man for the job. I personally think Edward Furlong would have done a much better job had he reprised the role. I also felt that the absence of the Sarah Connor character was another big downfall for the third film as she's certainly a benchmark character for these movies, much like Arnold. Clare Danes as Katherine Brewster was just bland, I never found myself believing in the character and felt the film could survive without that character. I felt that she was simply a device to explain the plot of the Terminator history (or future, whichever way you see it) for the new viewers who may not have seen the original films. Kristanna Loken was triumphant as the T-X and for a female Terminator, I now can't think of anyone better for the role.

A few things within the film didn't make sense to me, but I can't talk about them because it will ruin it for those who haven't seen it. One thing that bugged me about it, however, was the whole idea that Judgment Day was inevitable. If that is so, then what was the purpose of blowing up Cyberdyne Systems in T2 to prevent Judgment Day when it's actually just a way of postponing it? The CGI within, is really well done and the chase scene in which the T-X is driving a giant crane which destroys almost an entire town, is possibly the best action sequence in many years of film. The effects involving the Terminators is also very well done, apart from the hand to hand fight scene which had great potential, but just ended up looking like a big budget slapstick comedy sketch.

The comedy moments are also a big downfall and dragged the mood of the film down to a ridiculous level. Thankfully, the doomsday mood was brought back through the immense action scenes and it managed to keep me entertained for the entire runtime. Flaws aside, it's a good addition to the series and although many loyal fans of the first two films may trash it, I enjoyed it and believe that those who have yet to see it should at least give it a chance.

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