Terminator Salvation

Sucker Punch Movie

Recently, we’ve lived through trailers for Jurassic World, Terminator: Genisys, and Star Wars: Episode VII – The Force Awakens.  Some people are getting way excited, but it’s worth keeping in mind that trailers are built specifically to make the movie look good. Now, we’re not saying anything about the quality of those movies. Just beware before you plunk down your hard-earned cash in case they end up like…

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Blu-ray Spotlight

Anthologies are tricky business, especially with a beloved franchise that has taken some lumps over the years. For example, 20th Century Fox knocked it out of the park earlier this year with the Alien Anthology, mostly because it gave us ample reason to rebuy some films we’ve already owned for years. The packaging was brilliant, the box set included a bunch of new interactive features and the entire thing was easily one of the most impressive box sets we’ve seen in a long time, if ever. Even people who weren’t fans of the troubled third film or the odd left turn of the fourth film would be compelled to pick it up. It was that good. Conversely, The Terminator Anthology, released as an exclusive to Best Buy this past week as compendium on the sci-fi franchise that includes one of the single most iconic characters in cinema history, is not that good. It’s a nice little set that comes with all of the movies in a nice package, but it fails a lot of ways that other anthologies succeed. And I say this as someone who probably enjoyed Terminator 3 and Terminator Salvation more than you did.

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This Means War is, as McG puts it, exactly what you think a McG movie is. It’s as commercial and open as a movie can get, something the director has no shame about. Plenty scoff at the idea of loving the tag of a “populist” filmmaker, not McG. Clearly he sees his films as being more than dumb fun, though, and strives to make sure they’re not that. Films similar to This Means War usually don’t strike audience members as being a “personal” project in some fashion. That doesn’t seem to be the case for McG, as he puts it. This Means War has a scene featuring two of the leads discussing Alfred Hitchock, and you can just feel the director taking the opportunity to talk through his characters. It’s a fanboy touch, and he came off as the most energetic kind in our conversation. Here’s what McG had to say about embracing the title of a populist filmmaker, leaving behind med school for music and film, and reflecting on Terminator Salvation:

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Culture Warrior

Movies have a strange relationship with history, that’s for certain. On the one hand, they have the ability to bring to life, in spectacular detail, the intricate recreation of historical events. On the other hand, films can have a misleading and even potentially dangerous relationship with history, and can change the past for the benefit of storytelling or for political ends. And there’s always the option of using films to challenge traditional notions of history. Finally, many movies play with history through the benefit of cinema’s artifice. Arguably, it’s this last function that you see history function most often in relationship to mainstream Hollywood cinema. In playing with history, Hollywood rarely possesses a calculated political motive or a desire to recreate period detail. In seeking solely to entertain, Hollywood portrays the historical, but rarely history itself. Tom Shone of Slate has written an insightful piece about a unique presence of that historical mode all over the movies seeking to be this summer’s blockbusters. Citing X-Men: First Class, Super 8, Captain America: The First Avenger, and Cowboys & Aliens as examples, Shone argues that this is an unusual movie summer in terms of the prominence of movies set in the past. However, while such a dense cropping of past-set films is unusual for this season, these movies don’t seem to be all that concerned with “the past” at all – at least, not in the way that we think.

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The rights to the Terminator franchise have been sold. And it happened with the least amount of fanfare possible. Aside from rumors that the head of Sony Pictures stormed out of yesterday’s auction, it was a relatively bland affair.

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After dispensing upon the world a movie (Terminator Salvation) that probably made James Cameron cry, sometimes not-so-bad director McG is heading to the world of formula action-comedy. And of course he’s bringing along his keen eye for telling the story of romance, with action.

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The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Science has released the list of the seven films that are in the final running for the Best Visual Effects Oscar. We break down the finalists, telling you exactly who may or may not win.

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The year is about over. And while we’re on the cusp of laying down our epic Year in Review, we thought we’d start you off with something easy — a gigantic montage.

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2009-thetrailer

It is important that we make ourselves ready for the onslaught of video mashups and montages for the year that was 2009, as it’s bound to happen.

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dvd-drinking-game

So here we are with a fourth Terminator movie, helmed by McG no less. This time, it’s Batman versus Perseus in a post-apocalyptic smackdown. It may not be the best of the series, but you just might believe it is after playing this game.

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thisweekindvd-header1

Rob Hunter loves movies. He also loves working as a documentary filmmaker who follows Asian girls around to document their love lives. These two joys come together in the form of cash money payments that he receives every week and immediately uses to buy more DVDs.

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mwl-thegame

Wealthy-beyond-belief Nicholas Van Orton (Michael Douglas) is gifted entrance into a strange game by his prodigal brother Conrad (Sean Penn). He goes in for extensive testing, and when he’s told he doesn’t qualify, the game begins in earnest, testing his wits, physical strength and the emotional scarring caused by witnessing his father’s suicide as a child.

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rr-iceage3

Welcome to yet another photo finish weekend at the Reject Report, and just like a few weeks back when The Hangover clipped Up at the wire to win, we don’t know yet who ended up on top.

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terminatorlondon1

We’re feeding grist into the mill with the non-news that the next Terminator installment might be set in Merry Olde England.

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lessonlearned-up

After a dismal start to the season, it looks like Pixar and Sam Raimi are restoring our faith that the Summer can pick itself up and dust itself off.

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cultwarrior-marley

This week, Culture Warrior gets personal as he covers why Hollywood and its characters always seem to be the same but different.

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Who needs a $100 million weekend? Not Hollywood, says Kevin Carr.

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rr-up

As expected and predicted by just about everyone, the rest of the field was looking Up — way Up — at yet another dominating Pixar performance at the box office.

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terminatorsalvationcharlesgibson

The Visual FX Supervisor for Terminator Salvation gave us some of his time to discuss the concepts behind creating the world after the bombs fell.

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rr-up

The obvious question this weekend is: will the box office go to hell, or will it go Up? Also — some more good Star Trek box office news.

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published: 12.19.2014
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published: 12.18.2014
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published: 12.17.2014
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