Terminator Genisys begins post-Judgement Day. The war has been raging for several years now and a terminator has been sent back in time to kill Sarah Conner (Emilia Clarke). Remembering what's already happened, John Conner (Jason Clarke), her son, sends back somebody too. This man is Kyle Reese (Jai Courtney). Well, the film claims it's the Kyle Reese we know and love, but this is undeniably a different version of him. No way this movie can convince me they're the same character. Anyway, when he arrives in the 80s, Reese is shocked to find that things are drastically different to what was described to him. Sarah has been guarded by a terminator (Arnold Schwarzenegger) for over a decade, and she's preparing to take down Skynet once and for all, destroying them before Judgement Day happens. That's when a new threat arrives. A threat that could potentially take them down. The threat should be a secret, but because of the poor advertising, everybody knows just who this threat is. Goddamn it.
Emilia Clarke, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Jason Clarke and J.K. Simmons are all fantastic in their roles. None of them are at the top of their games, perhaps due to the poorly written screenplay, but none of them are awful. They're all the best parts of this film. Then there's Jai Courtney. Now, I've always been fairly lenient towards Courtney in previous movies. I honestly don't think he's all that bad an actor, however in Terminator Genisys he's a bit of a hit and miss. He has his moments, especially a scene early on between him and Sarah Conner, but overall he just falls flat, delivering the odd line in a cringe worthy fashion.
That's the thing about most of the action sequences, too. They're all set up to be this exciting and thrilling thing, yet only a couple of them actually deliver on that, the main one coming to mind is a scene involving the younger terminator and the T1000. It's a thrilling, yet predictable sequence that actually delivers what a Terminator film should deliver. The rest of the action feels more 'been there, done that' and it's not nearly as exciting. Not even the stuff in the future is that exhilarating to watch. It's all a mash up of things we've already seen.
Terminator Genisys' biggest issue is with the screenplay. Dealing with time travel is difficult enough, but in Terminator Genisys they time travel to prevent time travel that's going to prevent time travel. There's so many unexplained events and redo's and timeline changes that the film just becomes a big, convoluted mess. It took me a substantial amount of time to think about what the hell actually happened in this movie and I'm still not entirely sure. Things change, things don't. I didn't even know what year it was by the time the film's closing credits begun. This is a Terminator movie. I'm meant to think, but I shouldn't need to try and work out what the hell I just watched.