“Terminator: Dark Fate” Trailer!

One of the words that comes to mind immediately while watching this trailer is…wow. Just…wow.

I don’t even know if it’s a good “wow” or not. On the one hand, this is just James Cameron trying to breathe life into a tired franchise that feels generic in our modern world, over-saturated as we are with action thrillers, and sci-fi dystopians. He’s really not giving us anything new with this trailer, and that’s a shame. But on the other hand – well, it’s still got Arnold Schwarzenegger and Linda Hamilton reuniting one last time, and nobody’s going to want to miss that. I’m not even a Terminator fan, and it still feels like a big moment to me: Hamilton’s entrance, equipped with bazooka, is probably the best scene in the trailer.

But seriously, how can it not be? When Sarah Connor’s car screeches to a halt and she faces down the new Terminator (played by Gabriel Luna of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., here just barely managing not to reprise his role as Ghost Rider, creepy skull-mask, reckless driving and all), you immediately prepare for an epic showdown. Unfortunately, that suspense is lost pretty quickly – Connor guns down Luna’s character in a matter of seconds and carries away our protagonists, the half-human, half-robotic assassin Grace (Mackenzie Davis), and Dani Ramos (Natalia Reyes), a half-human, half-Terminator girl. The trailer is pretty light on action, even though it can’t afford to be. Seriously, you’ve got these robots and androids and cyborgs running around – use them! Luna’s Terminator is this really cool and terrifying liquid-metal skeleton creature that is able to detach from his body – use that!

But no, the trailer’s “money shot” is instead Grace whacking Gabriel Luna’s Terminator over the head with a hammer. Like…a literal hammer, too, not some Hammer of Thor or anything. Just the most boring weapon imaginable. Unsurprisingly, we see Luna’s character shrug off the impact.

Where’s the fun in that? Especially after Cameron’s latest project Alita: Battle Angel, which featured very inventive high-tech robot weapons, this seems like a downgrade. Cameron and director Tim Miller better have something truly incredible up their sleeve: the shock and awe of seeing Schwarzenegger and Hamilton reunited is only going to last so long.

Trailer Rating: 6.5/10

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