Director McG (whose famed for directing Charlie's Angels film in 2000 and 2003) comes a new prequel of Terminator movie. It was dubbed as Terminator 4 but the better title is called as Terminator Salvation: The End Begins.
The film continues from Rise of the Machines after the nuclear missiles were released and initiated.
In 2003, a young man was on death sentence for the the murder of two policeman and his brother. Dr. Serena Kogan (Helena Bonham Carter) from Cyberdyne Systems tries to convince him and in return to give him a second chance in life for the purpose of donating his organs for her medical research. A so-called medical research known as Project Angel. Before the agreement, the man we then know Marcus Wright (Sam Worthington) asked for a kiss from Dr. Kogan before signing the contract. Soon, we see him being tied to a seat and prayers were mentioned and he has no last words before the lethal injection enters his body.
The film cuts to one year later, the day when Judgment Day finally arrives. Back to the year 2018, John Connor (Christian Bale) leads a group of Resistance against the machines on one of Skynet's base.
Connor dives down to an open underground tunnel with a group of men and finds a whole lot of human prisoners-looking-like-zombies and information of Skynet's pre-development for a new-type of Terminator incorporating with living tissue (T-800 version) which is different from what he has seen before. When Connor climbs back to the top, he finds his men and the pilots dead as if being ambushed by machines; he became the only survivor after a nuclear explosion and battling a half-piece Terminator (T-600). He then walks away from the scene.
The same place of wreckage from where Connor took off, but this time the area is dark and raining; comes a naked man covered in mud. With those eyes, we knew it was Marcus, he picked up one of the Resistance clothes and travelled on foot to nowhere.
John Connor was onboard of the helicopter and shouting to his pilot to make a detour as he wants to head to the command center instead. An arguement with the pilot makes him wins the conversation and dives into the sea. The scene shows Connor sitting down facing and having a talk with his superior General Ashdown (Michael Ironside) about his discovery inside the nuclear submarine.
In the ruins of Los Angeles, Marcus is saved from a T-600 Terminator by Kyle Reese (Anton Yelchin) and his mute companion Star (Jadagrace Berry).
Reese then told Marcus, "Come with me if you wanna live".
It was after the scene when Hunter Killer (HK) arrives and leaves and knowing that there were humans around that Marcus questioned about the machines that kills.
When Marcus was gunpointed by Reese, he said to him "If you point your gun, ready to pull the trigger".
Reese then relates to Marcus the events of Judgment Day and the ensuing war between humans and machines.
Marcus Wright: What day? What year?
Kyle Reese: 2018
Marcus Wright: What happened here?
Kyle Reese: Judgment Day happened.
Marcus then followed Reese and Star to the so-called command center of Los Angeles. Marcus helps to repair a broken radio when Reese claims that he can't seem to repair them.
Upon hearing John's radio broadcast, the three leave Los Angeles in search of the Resistance. Marcus fixed a jeep to start rolling and had an arguement with Reese for his irresponsible and selfish behavior of abandoning them and not knowing a machine was spying on them. They survive attacks by Moto-Terminator and Harvester.
Unfortunate Reese, Star, and several other humans are taken prisoner, while a pair of Resistance A-10s are shot down. Marcus locates downed pilot Blair Williams (Moon Bloodgood) and they make their way to John's base, but Marcus is wounded by a land mine.
In an attempt to save his life, the Resistance fighters discover that he is in fact a cyborg with human organs, a mechanical endoskeleton, circuitry, and a partially artificial cerebral cortex. Marcus believes himself to be human, demanding to be released so that he can save Reese from Skynet Work Camp by infiltrating into Skynet Central in San Francisco, but Connor orders his men that Marcus would be dismantled.
You and me. We've been at war since before either of us even existed. You tried killing my mother. You killed my father. You will not kill me.
During the resulting pursuit Marcus saves John's life from Skynet hydrobots, and the two form an alliance—Marcus will enter Skynet's headquarters and attempt to disable its defenses so that Connor can rescue Reese.
Connor urged the Resistance around the world to stand-by his command so as he can infiltrate the Skynet Central to rescue the prisoners
Connor demands that Ashdown delay the attack so that he can rescue Reese and the other prisoners, but Ashdown refuses and relieves John of his command. However, Connor's soldiers remain loyal to him and he sends a radio broadcast asking the other Resistance fighters not to attack Skynet.
Marcus Wright refuses to take order from Skynet after destroying the chip implanted behind his skull and destroys Skynet's mainframe and to help John Connor from the prototype T-800
Meanwhile, Marcus enters the Skynet base and interfaces with the computer, disabling the perimeter defenses and allowing Connor to infiltrate the cell block and release the human prisoners. The Resistance's disabling signal is revealed to be a ruse, and the command submarine with the resistance leaders aboard is destroyed by a Hunter-Killer.
Marcus discovers that he was created by Skynet and has unwittingly fulfilled his programmed mission to lure John into the base to be killed. He tears out the hardware linking him to Skynet and leaves to assist John in battling a T-800 Model 101 Terminator (Roland Kickinger with Arnold Schwarzenegger's CG facial).
"Everyone deserves a second chance," said Marcus Wright to Blair Williams.
Terminator fans has been doubting director McG into directing the latest Terminator film, where the focus of the film this time isn't really about the Terminators much although there were a hell bunch of them out there. The focus is more on the human race. Their struggle of winning the war. Purpose to live and exist. Director McG has never direct anything serious so far.
Well, this time he proves what's best and he's capable of doing to please the audiences and fans. Bale as John Connor reminds me of his role in 3:10 to Yuma where he acts alongside Russell Crowe. But Bale's portrayal in this film with Sam Worthington as Marcus Wright is a little awkward when I saw Marcus being held captive and still believes he's human; that is when John Connor's interrogation having that Batman's voice in Dark Knight with Joker.
Anton Yelchin as the young Kyle Reese; this Reese has the every knowledge of being taught by Marcus Wright where we will recall some parts being shown in The Terminator. The part where Marcus tight a rope around the rifle was shown in the first Terminator film when he battle the T-800 to protect Sarah Connor. Yelchin delivers the character very interesting and there are still a little comedy in him. Perhaps Reese was still a teenager.
Then there's this scene where the Hydrobots jumps onto Connor's face as it wriggles to kill him. Don't you think it's one of James Cameron's cameo item? Doesn't it reminds you of facehugger in Aliens?