I was raised on Arnie movies. When I was young (too young to be watching hyper-violent 80s movies) I constantly watched Running Man, Total Recall, Predator, and, the crème de la crème, The Terminator and Terminator 2. I fucking love those movies. All of those movies, but especially the Terminator films. As a pair they are like the Godfather Parts One and Two of urban Sci Fi. They fit together perfectly and show that James Cameron has such a film grasp on how sometimes the best way to do a sequel is through sheer escalation (for further reading watch Aliens.) It’s such a crazy simple idea behind Terminator 2. Cameron simply takes Arnie, the terrifying villain of the first movie, and makes him a good guy against a robot made of liquid metal and cutting edge special effects (which FYI still hold up very well.) The plot of the two films is pretty much identical (robot sent back in time to kill future resistance leader) but T2 simply ups the explosions, deaths, mini-guns, humour, Guns and Roses, miniature dirt bikes, and naked robot dudes.
By that rationale you would think before watching this trailer I would be incredibly excited but remember, Terminator 3 wasn’t great. Jonathon Mostow is no James Cameron and, even though I think I’ve seen that film three times, I remember nothing about it. I never saw Terminator Salvation. I had full intentions of doing it and then I saw McG (ugh!) give an interview where he promised that viewers would get to see the origin of Kyle Reese’s sneakers. To me, and call me crazy, clothes do not need origin stories. Kyle Reese’s sneakers are not The One Ring. They are nothing and putting them in your shitty movie impresses no one and shows only that you’ve seen the movie you’re doing a sequel to, and, realistically, that should be the main prerequisite of being allowed to make your shitty movie.
However, last week saw the release of trailers for new Star Wars and Jurassic Park movies, and each time I was enraptured by the quality on display and the feelings of nostalgia that be created simply by a piece of music.
So I went into this with an open mind and found this trailer to be awesome. It positions itself first as a straight remake of The Terminator and then hits you with the sharpest of left turns. Sarah Conner, weak and afraid in the first movie, was rescued by The Terminator years earlier and is now the kickass Sarah Connor of T2. Trailers full of mad action set-pieces are always going to get the blood pumping but here the action looks slick and fun. The scene of Old Arnie facing off against Young Arnie made me exclaim, “What?” in a high-pitched voice, and I was very happy that a lot of the focus on the trailer was on Sarah Connor’s story and not simply shot upon shot of Arnie shooting people/things. And again, as with Star Wars and Jurassic World, a simple music cue can’t help but put a smile on your face.
Bring on July!
Photo/Trailer: Paramount Pictures