Trade Reviews of "Terminator Salvation"

Hollywood Reporter’s Michael Rechtshaffen has an advance peak at TERMINATOR SALVATION, which opens this week. He thinks the machines are great, but the humans are too robotic.

The latest chapter in the successful cyborg series following 2003’s “Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines” — and the first sans Schwarzenegger — “Terminator Salvation” doesn’t skimp on all that crunching heavy metal.
But while incoming director McG (the “Charlie’s Angels” movies) certainly gets a rise out of the machinery in the post-apocalyptic thriller, there’s little sign of life where the flatly executed human component is concerned.
The terminally sullen results are unlikely to hurt the picture’s opening holiday weekend, given the presence of last summer’s boxoffice king, Christian Bale, but its total domestic take will fall a lot closer in line with “Terminator 3’s” $150.3 million than those gargantuan “Dark Knight” numbers reaped by Warner Bros.

UPDATE: Variety’s John Anderson seems a bit more pleased with the film:

Darker, grimmer and more stylistically single-minded than its two relatively giddy predecessors, “Terminator Salvation” boasts the kind of singular vision that distinguished the James Cameron original, the full-throttle kinetics of “Speed” and an old-fashioned regard for human (and humanoid) heroics. Only pic’s relentlessly doomsday tone — accessorized by helmer McG’s grimy, gun-metal palette — might keep auds from flocking like lemmings to the apocalypse. The fourth in the celebrated sci-fi series, “Salvation” opens and closes with humanity at war with the machines. In other words, this thing isn’t going to end soon. Nor should it, if it keeps on like this.

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