Genisys will go down as worst Terminator movie ever

Terminator Genisys (M)

Director: Alan Taylor (Thor: The Dark World)

Starring: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Emilia Clarke, Jai Courtney, Jason Clarke, J.K. Simmons.

Rating: *

I’ll be back(wards)

Let the record show I witnessed a screening of the misbegotten action sequel Terminator Genisys three days ago.

In the hours that followed, I sent a cyborg back in time to Hollywood 2012 to prevent this abomination from ever getting a green light.

So if you are reading this review today, I can only assume that my automaton assassin has failed in its mission.

Tough girl ... Emilia Clarke plays Sarah Connor in Terminator Genisys.

Tough girl … Emilia Clarke plays Sarah Connor in Terminator Genisys.

For this, I can only apologise.

Like so many, I have been with the Terminator franchise for the long haul.

The first two are stone-cold classics. The next two delivered a fleeting rush when they really had to, even if we sometimes had to look the other way.

With Terminator Genisys, however, it’s better if you just walk right away.

Ask yourself this: do you really want your final memory of all things Terminator to be the great Arnold Schwarzenegger playing a punchline-mulching pensioner-bot named Pops?

Didn’t think so.

Big time ... Aussie actor Jai Courtney plays Kyle Reese in Terminator Genisys.

Big time … Aussie actor Jai Courtney plays Kyle Reese in Terminator Genisys.

This is not to say the instantly irritating obsolescence of Terminator Genisys is in any way Arnie’s fault.

The 67-year-old Austrian behemoth still has some screen charisma left to burn, and there are occasions here where the warmth he gives off is enough for the movie to scrape by.

However, guilty-pleasure scenes such as when Arnie is propelled headfirst through the windscreen of a speeding vehicle, and then casually asks the driver to vacate his seat, are few and far between.

Serious mode ... Emilia Clarke, Arnold Schwarzenegger and Jai Courtney get down to busine

Serious mode … Emilia Clarke, Arnold Schwarzenegger and Jai Courtney get down to business in Terminator Genisys.

Schwarzenegger’s main duties in Genisys are confined to that of a man-machine mascot, a walking, barely-talking reminder of the franchise’s former glories.

Much of the heavy lifting in Genisys is handed over to new franchise recruits Emilia Clarke (cast principally to attract unwitting Game Of Thrones tragics), Jason Clarke (no relation) and Jai Courtney (no hope).

This trio are left stranded inside a near-comically confusing plot that flips, flops and fudges all Terminator lore into something that would be laughed out of a Transformers movie.

To briefly summarise: in the future, saintly saviour John Connor has ordered right-hand-man Kyle Reese back to 1984 to stand guard over his revered mother Sarah Connor.

Action stations ... Jai Courtney plays Kyle Reese in Terminator Genisys.

Action stations … Jai Courtney plays Kyle Reese in Terminator Genisys.

However, Sarah already has a protector in the kindly robot Pops, who is clearly not a fan of Kyle.

The trio later fast-forward themselves to a date with fate in the year 2017, where the fabled threat posed by the Skynet surveillance system is now disguised as an operating system about to enslave every digital device on the planet.

All of these developments and more are clunkily explained by the actors while they take a breather between turgidly repetitive action sequences.

Somehow, the whole thing lasts two hours before somebody finally thinks of a way to end it all.

While the special-effects throughout are indeed top-notch — and the final on-screen skirmish between good and evil marks a sudden uptick in quality — Genisys will go down in history as the worst Terminator movie ever by a considerable distance.

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