"A Heroic Thriller About Second Chances and Sacrifice"
TERMINATOR SALVATION, based on the previous TERMINATOR movies, finds John Conner, the prophesized leader of the Resistance against the world dominating machines, going on a quest to find his father who holds the key to stopping world annihilation. After Skynet, an evil organization run by clever machines, wiped out most of humanity with a nuclear holocaust, the human survivors formed a Resistance movement made up of small bands of soldiers.
In 2003, in the movie’s prologue, Marcus, a man on death row, agrees to donate his body to science. However, he wakes up in 2018 to discover that he is now part machine and part human, a cyborg. John Conner must decide if Marcus is an ally or a spy for Skynet.
As the Resistance, using a new technology, attempts to launch an all-out invasion of Skynet’s main headquarters, John learns that his father is being held prisoner at that facility. His father, who originally went back in time to save John’s mother, is now a teenager. The Resistance commander calls for the invasion of Skynet, but Connor goes against the order and uses his skills of persuasion to hold off the invasion until he can rescue the humans.
The story in TERMINATOR SALVATION is mostly non-stop action, though there is a bit more plot development than in previous TERMINATOR movies. There are a couple of unforeseen twists, and the movie ends on a note of sacrifice for others.
The acting in TERMINATOR SALVATION is top notch, especially for an effects-driven action movie.
There is a strong theme of sacrifice as a character willingly dies to save another. There is frequent reference to a second chance at life, new life and even a reference to being born again. Also, it’s noted that a “heart” is what separates people from machines. Also, the Resistance is made of mostly of good, moral people trying to save humans from the evil machines. Finally, when Marcus is about to be executed in a cross position, a preacher reads Psalm 23.
However, for all of the end-of-humanity discussions as John Conner and his cohorts fight the evil machines, God or Jesus Christ are not mentioned in that part of the movie, save for one profanity. Therefore, there is an underlying Christian allegory with overt references to born again, but it seems implausible that none of these people who encounter the near end of the world – or at least the near end of humanity – would not call out to God at least once or still have some forms of religion and religious belief.
Of interest to fans of the previous movies, a digitized Arnold Schwarzenegger as the original Terminator appears in an action sequence as a machine trying to kill the hero.
There is plenty of intense violence in TERMINATOR SALVATION, but almost no blood and very few people dying on screen. In fact, most of the dying characters are killed in explosions, and much of the violence and gunfire is aimed at robots. Happily, there is very little foul language in this PG-13 movie and no sex scenes, even hints of any.
One minor note is that the Schwarzenegger character is a robot with skin, and he, at first, appears as a naked man. Nothing revealing is shown as parts of his body are blurred out or covered up by the framing of the shot.
TERMINATOR SALVATION is a fun, action movie that’s missing much of the potential negative content. Media-wise viewers probably will want to discuss the movie’s themes of what makes someone a human, in light of the biblical fact that humans are made in God’s image (Genesis 1:27). MOVIEGUIDE® advises caution for older children due to the movie’s intense action violence.
(CC, BB, H, L, VV, N, M) Strong Christian, redemptive, moral worldview of saving humanity from evil machines with a strong Christian, redemptive theme of sacrificing for others, including man on a cross about to die, other symbolic man in cross position, discussion of being born again, having new life and getting second chance, man willing to give his heart so another will have new life, although there is no mention of God in the main part of the movie except in a profanity, and twice there is a formal reading of Psalm 23 by a preacher before the state execution of a supporting character during a prologue; three light obscenities and one profanity; much violence, though fantasy in nature with mostly no blood, many explosions, man shot in back, man is executed through lethal injection, fist fights between men, and much intense fighting between humans and robots; no sexual content; upper male nudity, one robot character, who has skin, is naked, though no private parts are seen; no alcohol; no smoking; and, machines are trying to take over the world.
TERMINATOR SALVATION, continuing the TERMINATOR movies, stars Christian Bale. Bale plays John Conner, the prophesied leader of the Resistance against world-dominating machines. John seeks to find his father, who holds the key to the total annihilation of humanity. John learns his father is being held prisoner at the evil Skynet headquarters. The Resistance commander calls for an invasion of the headquarters, but John uses his skills of persuasion to hold it off until he can rescue the humans.
TERMINATOR SALVATION is a thrilling action movie that’s missing much of the potential negative content. It is mostly non-stop, intense violent action, but almost no blood and very few people actually dying on screen. In fact, much of the violence is aimed at robots. Also, there is very little foul language and no sex. A robot with skin appears as a naked man, but nothing revealing is shown. Happily, TERMNINATOR SALVATION has a strong moral, redemptive Christian theme of fighting evil and sacrifice. Media-wise viewers may want to discuss the movie’s themes of what makes someone a real human being. MOVIEGUIDE® advises caution for older children due to the intense action violence.