Michael Scott

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Terminator: Dark Fate


28175
Movie: :3stars:
4K Video: :4.5stars:
Video: :4.5stars:
Audio: :5stars:
Extras: :2stars:
Final Score: :3.5stars:



28177
Movie

The Terminator franchise has most definitely been on shaky ground ever since the early 90s. James Cameron gave us a fantastic 80s thriller in Terminator, and an even better (one of the few sequels where it out paced the original) sequel in Terminator 2, only to fizzle at the box office when someone else took the helm and gave us Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines. Now, I’m going to stop you right there, as I actually thought that Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines was maligned a bit too much. I get it. It’s hard to top the incredible ending of Terminator 2, and the concept of fate being something you can’t run from was totally antithetical to James Cameron’s theme of being the master of your own fate from the first two movies. Still, out of all the post Terminator 2 sequels, it was the one that felt the MOST like a Terminator movie. Arnie was still ripped as all get out, and could play the titular killing machine with the impassioned humor that made him so loved from the 80s and 90s, and Nick Stahl wasn’t too bad of a John Conner.

That being said, the next several films tried desperately to revive the franchise, but the franchise spinoff’s were……..wait for it…..terminated (sorry, I couldn’t help it) after each new film. Terminator: Salvation had a great concept. Go forward in time to the actual resistance, but was met with very mediocre audience reception. Paramount realized they were going in the wrong direction, and ruminated until they came up with Terminator: Genesis. Now I’m not going to lie. Genesis was actually a really neat concept and did decently at the box office. They took some risks and completely changed up the future (even more drastically than the twist ending of Salvation), turning John into a villain, and adding some mystery layers with Pops and the other terminators. HOWEVER, Emilia Clarke and Jai Courtney has about as much charisma as drying paste, so sadly the concepts that they opened up in that film was left to rot.

Then came along Terminator: Dark Fate, the supposed savior of the franchise. This was the first time that James Cameron had come back to the creators chair as he was the driving production force behind the film. Cameron decided to scrap the previous 3 films from the canon and write a direct sequel to Terminator 2, and even gave the directing reigns to Deadpool’s Tim Miller. Needless to say, I was a bit excited about the return of Cameron and who he chose to direct the film, so I got my butt in theaters day one for this epic event…..only to be left sadly disappointed.

The film opens up with a flashback to Sarah Conner (Linda Hamilton) screaming to the good doctor in the psych ward about the upcoming apocalypse, only to jump to an older Sarah recounting about the events after they saved humanity. Slightly huge spoiler, but it’s in the first 5 minutes of the film so it can’t be helped. After John and Sarah destroyed the T101 and all the processing chips to Skynet, the world was at peace. However, Skynet had created a contingency plan. The T101 that they faced was only one of several terminaters that were sent back simultaneously. A few years later one of them caught up with the pair and terminated John, despite the fact that his future no longer existed.

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Shifting gears we get to see a new pair of future time travelers zap into our time line. This time it’s a cyberneticly enhanced soldier from the future named Grace (Makenzie Davis), and a new Terminator (played by Diego Luna). Their target is no longer the Conner’s, but rather a young girl named Dani Ramos (Natalie Reyes) living in Mexico. The cycle begins again as the Terminator tries to kill the poor girl, only to be rescued by Grace. However, as cybernetic as she is, Grace is no match for the upgraded Terminator that went through the portal after Dani, and is about to be killed before an aged Sarah Conner comes out of nowhere and lays down some cover fire.

Long story short, This is a remake of Terminator 2 in more ways than one. With some heavy handed backstory by both Sarah and Grace, the audience learns that Judgement day DID happen. Except it wasn’t skynet. Sarah and John had successfully derailed skynet’s plans, but years later some OTHER AI came to be, and did the exact same thing as Skynet, just calling itself Legion instead. Dani is of course the next John Conner, and Grace is the Kyle Reese (with some upgrades)/ T101 sent back in time to protect her. Now Grace and Sarah have to team up to defeat the monster before he can finish his mission and doom the whole world…..again.

Terminator: Dark Fate is NOT an awful film. But it is most certainly a movie that makes you stop, look at just what happened, and wonder WHY this entire thing was necessary. Supposedly there was some drama going on behind the scenes with Tim Miller and James Cameron, with both parties being rather upset at the other (who knows whose fault it really is, we may never know), but the end result is a movie that literally treads water and remakes what came before it after promising that the franchise was going to move forward. Despite their flaws and hiccups, Terminator: Salvation and Terminator: Genesis actually put forth some interesting twists about he future. Bad acting aside, Genesis actually created an alternate time line type scenario that allowed for SOOOOO much more to be possible, but Terminator: Dark Fate is nothing but a remake of Terminator and Terminator 2. I mean, you can’t honestly say with a straight face that just because the new villain is called Legion that they aren’t a direct clone of Skynet? The entire film is nothing be remaking Cameron’s original sequel, even going so far as to have Arnie reprise his role as one of the original T101’s and help Sarah keep the NEW John Conner alive.

Acting wise this is a very mixed bag. I LOVED having Linda Hamilton back in the saddle as Sarah Conner. In fact, she was easily the best part of the entire movie. She’s tough, rough, and it’s fantastic to see the original heroine of the first two movies alive and kicking. She chewed the scenery a bit (the “I’ll be back” line was pretty cringey), but still was great to watch. Arnie, well, I knew he wasn’t going to be a MAJOR part from the get go, but he was honestly disappointing. The direction they took his character felt so out of place with the films that we’d seen before that even his mild humor wasn’t appropriate. Don’t get me wrong, I really enjoy Arnie, and he was definitely needed for the film (there is no Terminator without Arnold in my opinion), but his role just didn’t feel organic. The real big disappointments were Mackenzie Davis and Natalie Reyes. Davis was ok as the super soldier from the future, but she was still kind of bland. I’m sure that Reyes is a fine actress in her own right, but the lines she was given, and the delivery of said lines was SOOOOOOOOOO bad that it actually hurt whenever she got all amped up and tried to give a speech.




Rating:

Rated R for violence throughout, language and brief nudity




4K Video: :4.5stars: Video: :4.5stars:
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Shot on digital Arri Alexa cameras and given a native 4K master for home video, Terminator: Dark Fate enjoys a healthy upgrade from the already great looking 1080p Blu-ray. The upgrades aren’t night and day at first glance, but if you look closely it’s a really nice uptick in quality. Facial details and skin tones get the biggest boost, showing finer facial details and some really nice HDR usage in the heavily stylized color department. However it’s the backgrounds and surrounding structural detail that gets a massive boost as well. Stones and clothing show more intimate nuances, as do the shadows and little bits of detail along the nano bots as they shift and flow to make the Terminator’s outer “shell”. Look at Carl’s cabin as well. You can see creases and cracks in the wood paneling that doesn’t show up on the Blu-ray, and the end battle on the waterfall shows stronger clarity. All in all, this is a great looking 4K UHD disc and a well deserved upgrade from the Blu-ray.








Audio: :5stars:
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The Terminator franchise has always had great audio, and this release is no different. Paramount’s stellar Dolby Atmos track just gets right to the meat of the issue and tears it up with gusto. The track is a mixture of frenetic action and quiet dialog, and the mix gives both equal amounts of detail. Quieter dialog heavy moments are clean and clear, devoid of any heavy scoring or LFE, only to jump into full swing once the action kicks up. The Atmos capabilities of the track are on full display, as the Terminator and the action fly around the sound stage from all angle. The roar of a helicopter thumps over head, while the shrieking sound of rending claws on metal screeches from the sides and front. LFE is deep and powerful, shaking the entire foundation when called upon, and accentuating the typical Terminator score quite nicely. Needless to say, this is the best part of the entire package, and a thrilling audio experience as well.







Extras: :2stars:
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• Deleted and Extended Scenes
• A Legend Reforged
• World Builders
• Dam Busters: The Final Showdown
• VFX Breakdown: The Dragonfly











Final Score: :3.5stars:


Honestly, Terminator: Dark Fate is the quintessential definition of an unneeded film, and most likely the last Terminator film we’ll see considering that Arnie is aging quite a bit at this point, and the movie dive bombed badly at the box office. The powers that be have tried so valiantly to continue the Terminator legacy on past Cameron’s first two movies, but just about every movie has met with failure at the box office. For me personally I end the series at Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines because it was the last movie that really felt like canon, but the three films that have come after it has been one botched failure after another to revitalize a franchise that really didn’t NEED to be a franchise. Terminator 2 is still the peak ending that the series has had, and ended it so perfectly that I’m comfortable just letting series quietly end now, ignoring the other films that tried to reboot, or continue, the series in another direction. Paramount’s 4K UHD disc is stunning in terms of technical specs though. Audio and video are awesome, but sadly a bit limited in extras. I can’t really recommend Dark Fate as a great film, but it’s fun enough if you’ve enjoyed Salvation and Genesis in the past. Decent enough watch is what I would say.



Technical Specifications:

Starring: Linda Hamilton, Arnold Schwarzenegger, MacKenzie Davis, Natalie Reyes, Gabriel Luna, Diego Boneta
Directed by: Tim Miller
Written by: David S. Goyer, Billy Ray, Justin Rhodes
Aspect Ratio: 2.39:1 HEVC
Audio: English: Dolby Atmos (Dolby TrueHD 7.1 Core), Spanish, French DD 5.1
Subtitles: English, English SDH, French, Spanish
Studio: Paramount
Rated: R
Runtime: 128 Minutes
Blu-ray Release Date: January 28th, 2020
28176





Recommendation: Decent Watch

 

Todd Anderson

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*sigh*

I don't know Mike... I just don't know if I can put myself through the torture of watching this and feeling like I just wasted 2 hours of my life!
 

JBLhomeCinema

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I seen clips for free on youtube all random but I can place it all together and its just THE DREADFULANTOR I think I can survive without having this 4k Atmos in my home. I'm gonna erase all the other terminator movies and only think of the first one and second one. Okay the others had nice sound mixes but, no. No, no more of it as it will only gather dust on the shelf.

The first terminator movie I found scary when first saw it at the cinema years ago.... The second one wow exciting and ended there. The others has been nothing more than a MILKINATOR for past 20 years.
 

tripplej

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This franchise has to stop, end of story. period. lol. :)
 

JBLhomeCinema

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I watched Terminator 2, bluray last night. Wow. Its still impacting-ly exciting piece of cinema. The sound effects editing/mixing still brilliant with directional sound effects and occasionally dialogue panning with the split-surrounds and bombastic LFE.1 as and when.
I must have played the chapter when the swat-team enters the "cyberdyne-building" with sound effects of the door bleeping sound half panned left-centre and opening the door and entering the building. The shoot-out in the lobby later on with T-800 capping their knees, with sound panning wow sounds like sot of being there hearing it.

When I watched that TDF with air-plane scene I almost fell over laughing at the frame rate speed that I saw on youtube then T-800 covers for Sarah, by grabbing while taking bullets in the back. Then she growls at T-800 like a GRANNYNATOR "don't touch me" at that point I lost it and started laughing.

 

JBLhomeCinema

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I guess Skynet alpha waves have penetrated my mind. :rolleyes::redgrin:

TDF1.jpg

Dolby Stereo AtmosPlusIIx Lucasfilm Ltd THX Sound System. x123 JBL speakers, 20kw.

The clips on youtube made it look bad and its not half that bad, its far, far away better than the "mary sue star wars stories".
I'd give this a 7 plus rating its not bad for an action movie.

So the cliches :daydream: are all the same. Terminators travel back in time and still can't fly a helicopter without crashing ever single time. Female protector protecting the female future resistance leader. I get it.

Dolby Stereo AtmosPlusIIx made it far more exciting thou I felt some action scenes a little bit rushed during the airplane action scene of the Lockheed C-5 Galaxy, aircraft taking off but it was soundly exciting.

TDF2.jpg


I have a few ideas to expand my Overhead Height 1, 2 and 3 surrounds from x6 to at least x12 with three matching Dolby SA10 decoders, maybe within the next week or so once I have the extra amplifiers. I have done extensive listening to only the "overhead surrounds" and I can pretty much figure them out what they can do or what is mixed into them "stereo" I think I can expand it.

The Overhead surrounds often have a faint windy sound blowing gently above after one the first action scenes where chapter 5. If you can't hear these details in the overhead surrounds, then sidewall/rear back surrounds and three screen is turned up far too high. Try lowering the levels instead with most Marantz Denon you can use the Option button to trim the levels for the specific film, while the other levels in the main menu settings remain the same.
 

nikospriov

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I guess Skynet alpha waves have penetrated my mind. :rolleyes::redgrin:

View attachment 28713
Dolby Stereo AtmosPlusIIx Lucasfilm Ltd THX Sound System. x123 JBL speakers, 20kw.

The clips on youtube made it look bad and its not half that bad, its far, far away better than the "mary sue star wars stories".
I'd give this a 7 plus rating its not bad for an action movie.

So the cliches :daydream: are all the same. Terminators travel back in time and still can't fly a helicopter without crashing ever single time. Female protector protecting the female future resistance leader. I get it.

Dolby Stereo AtmosPlusIIx made it far more exciting thou I felt some action scenes a little bit rushed during the airplane action scene of the Lockheed C-5 Galaxy, aircraft taking off but it was soundly exciting.

View attachment 28714

I have a few ideas to expand my Overhead Height 1, 2 and 3 surrounds from x6 to at least x12 with three matching Dolby SA10 decoders, maybe within the next week or so once I have the extra amplifiers. I have done extensive listening to only the "overhead surrounds" and I can pretty much figure them out what they can do or what is mixed into them "stereo" I think I can expand it.

The Overhead surrounds often have a faint windy sound blowing gently above after one the first action scenes where chapter 5. If you can't hear these details in the overhead surrounds, then sidewall/rear back surrounds and three screen is turned up far too high. Try lowering the levels instead with most Marantz Denon you can use the Option button to trim the levels for the specific film, while the other levels in the main menu settings remain the same.
Hello i am new to this forum . Would you kindly elaborate on those Dolby SA10 Decoders because i have 2 DALI front height speakers and in most Atmos movies i am not really blown away by the effects. I am looking for ways to enjoy more the Atmos effects
Thanks
 

JBLhomeCinema

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Hello i am new to this forum . Would you kindly elaborate on those Dolby SA10 Decoders because i have 2 DALI front height speakers and in most Atmos movies i am not really blown away by the effects. I am looking for ways to enjoy more the Atmos effects
Thanks
I'm expanding on the already common overhead surrounds since they are each stereo Height 1 Height 2 and Height 3 they are going to have a centre phantom and now I'm few phases away of finishing the overheads with a simple modification of fitting in some cheap Dolby SA10 or Dolby Digital Surround-EX as it was called or the Dolby CP45 that was modified at the last hour so we can Hear "Jar Jar Binks". :greengrin:

I will also being using the rear matrix output on the decoder that is called "Extra" which only means its the same as any Dolby Stereo 424 matrix decoding. I'm just expanding on the use of these extra Stereo Height channels to see how much more exciting it can be even with Terminator Dark Fate, that I must have played now, more than most in the few days I had it now.

I should have the extra amplifiers installed tomorrow and the extra JBL control 5 speakers fitted on the ceiling from x6 to x9 with small floor level speakers JBL control 1. First I have to find the pin-output on DB25 output as its not mentioned in the Dolby SA10 manual, it be easy to find the + and - then use the ground as the outputs are balanced signal, rather than unbalanced.

I be using Terminator Dark Fate, for demo maybe for the next 2 weeks. Yes its movie of the month until the biggest Star... Midway (2019) arrives within a week or so now. You thought I was going to say Star... Nope I won't have that movie in my home. 20th Century Fox Originals Only! No disney.

The rise of.... makes Terminator Dark Fate, look and sound like a masterpiece. Even when Sarah Connor, says "don't touch me" still makes me laugh.

Here is what I have been doing so far with the install and pre-testing with SA10 and got wait for the extra 8 channels of amplifiers over the weekend.
In the video I noticed a ground transformer hum/buzz that I now corrected.


I want see if there is any hidden sound extras on the height channels there maybe some then again maybe not and the Extra channel will only output an extra ambience which is better than no extra ambience.
 

JBLhomeCinema

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May as well share Terminator Dark Fate, :greengrin: here in Lucasfilm Ltd THX Sound System x123 JBL speakers Dolby Atmos at 20kw.

 

JBLhomeCinema

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I'm starting to like or least enjoy Terminator Dark Fate. Tied the LFE.1 today with it. The bullets impacting into the T800 feel like a nail or rivet gun impacts thumping into my body.

 

thrillcat

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I enjoyed Genisys and Salvation, so this was a no-brainer.

My only problem was that I started it too early and the State of the Union (the REAL no-brainer) was still on.

Looked good. Sounded great. The language was...awkward. I’m not one to get offended by foul language but most of this seemed so forced. I dunno.
 
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