Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Terminator Salvation: the perils of 12A

Terminator Salvation: the perils of 12A

10 Second Reviews have just watched Terminator Salvation. One of the most exciting prospects of 2009 and the start of a reboot to a twenty-year-old sci-fi franchise that could be here to stay.

It was a great film:

"Terminator Salvation: 7/10. An explosive war film sprinkled with Teminator magic. Bale's intense, Worthers is hard and Arnie is pointless!" From our Twitter.

It was enjoyable with some of the best CGI, make up (if they even use make up anymore?) and action I've ever seen on the big screen. But for all it's explosions and gun fights; it just didn't feel like a Terminator film. And I reckon I know why.

It was only 12A.

What does 12A mean well:

"12A – Suitable for 12 years and over. No-one younger than 12 may see a ‘12A’ film in a cinema unless accompanied by an adult." From BBFC

It also means:

"Able to be watched by just about any little kid as long as they've got the cold hard cash to pay for the film, merchandise and Planet Hollywood theme park ticket." From Me.

If we look at the very high tech and Cyberdyne Systems-esq timeline here we can see my point:

Terminator is a brilliant franchise but it simply doesn't work as a 12A. 15 is fine - T1 bought us fear and T2 bought us awe (and fear). But T3 was a 12A and so shit it bought us anger and this latest film bought us kids and lots of them.

If the stories are told well like in T1 and T2 then it's heavy on the philosophy and heavy on the fear and violence. When these things get opened up to a whole new audience you end up pandering to them so we get horrible cheese like in T3 or massive amounts of over explanation to the point of patronising in T4.

Salvation is a good film but once again the dreaded 12A has diluted a brilliant franchise. Yes it means a whole new generation of fans, but inevitably the story-telling has suffered.

Joe (of joe and matt fame.)


Robin_1965 said...

An excellent review! I have to agree that making a T film that babies can watch totally ruins the franchise. The original Terminator film was an absolute tour de force for the independant film maker with bugger all budget, and was so atmospheric. It made the director a big name, and Arnie a star. A true cult classic turned by word of mouth into a blockbuster! That said, I'll still go and see the new T film, I just can't help myself!

Aste le vista, baby,

(Uncle) Robin.

Joe Tidy said...

Have you seen it yet then Robin? What did you make of it?