Friday, June 28, 2013

Should the 'Terminator' franchise be rebooted?

Paramount announced this week  that they plan to reboot the ‘Terminator’ franchise with a trilogy of new movies.

That’s not surprising – just about everything gets rebooted.

The problem is, most reboots are terrible.

Yeah, I said it.

I know an argument can be made that some reboots are better than the original – but that rarely ever happens.

Sure, you can point out that ‘The Dark Knight’ is pretty much the best Batman film ever aired on the big screen. You would be right.

However, ‘Batman Begins’ and ‘The Dark Knight Rises’ really weren’t very good. And, as much as I liked the Christian Bale Batman trilogy, I have a certain nostalgia for the Michael Keaton Batman films. We can all agree the Val Kilmer one and the George Clooney one were bad.

Still, I think comic book movies are unique in the reboot world. Comics themselves get rebooted all the time. Doing it with comic book movies actually makes sense.

That being said, I still believe that the current Spider Man reboot is far too soon after the last three
Tobey Maguire films. It’s okay to wait, people. I digress, though.

When you look at film reboots, though, there are a lot more terrible ones than there are good ones.

For example, the ’21 Jump Street’ reboot took a show I loved as a teenager – one that was fairly serious – and turned it into a slapstick comedy. 

The horror genre is filled with terrible remakes – including ‘Halloween,’ ‘Friday the 13th’ and ‘A Nightmare on Elm Street.’

And if someone can explain that ‘Dark Shadows’ reboot to me I would love to hear it. I’m still ticked off about how terrible that was.

Ironically, the horror genre is also one of the few genres that boasts decent remakes. ‘The Ring,’ ‘Dawn of the Dead’ and ‘Fright Night’ were all terrific reimaginings. They’re the exception, though, not the rule.

This brings us to ‘Terminator.’

I have to admit, I love the first two films in this franchise. The third film had some issues and that aborted reboot from a few years ago starring Christian Bale seemed to die a pretty quick death.

Still, if there is a film franchise that can be rebooted, it’s ‘Terminator.’


The time travel aspect, of course. That’s the reason the ‘Star Trek’ reboot works.

JJ Abrams took the ‘Star Trek’ franchise and started it again – but he smartly allowed that everything that had happened in those beloved lower-budget films still happened. We’re just in a different time line now.
‘Terminator’ could do the same thing. In a weird way, it doesn’t have to.

Because ‘Terminator’ is based on time travel – we can easily jump back and forth in the timeline. Granted, there is an issue with John Connor. He has been played by several different actors. Obviously Edward Furlong and Nick Stahl are out of the question since both are playing out drug issues in the public eye right now.

As much as I like Bale, I’m kind of sick of him. His John Connor reminded me of his Bruce Wayne. There wasn’t a lot of difference for me.

Honestly, I think you can cast someone new in this trilogy and be fine with it.

The problem you run into is Arnold Schwarzenegger. His face has become so linked with the ‘Terminator’ brand that it’s virtually impossible to do the film without him.

He’s aged well – but he can’t play a robot anymore, though. I don’t know how you bring Schwarzenegger back into the franchise – and I don’t know how it will be successful it will be without him.

So, there’s the conundrum.

What do you think? Is rebooting the ‘Terminator’ franchise a good idea?


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December 23, 2013 at 2:13 AM 

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