Terminator: Dark Fate reviewed by Mark Kermode

  • Published on Oct 25, 2019
  • Mark Kermode reviews Terminator: Dark Fate. Sarah Connor continues her mission to protect the world from Terminators, teaming up with a human/cyborg hybrid to protect a young woman.
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Comments • 1 196

  • Stu047
    Stu047 Day ago

    Let me start by saying that I actually like spending time in the Terminator universe; I'm happy to watch any and all installments of the franchise. - It entertains me just fine and whilst I absolutely adore Terminator 2 (one of my favourite films), I don't actually HATE any of it!
    I think however that the main problem for all the more recent Terminator films (and indeed for all those Terminator films yet to be attempted) is T2 itself. It's the benchmark by which not only all Terminator films are compared to but sci-fi action films in general!
    The second problem is, I don't see that there's a great deal more you can do with a plot that basically calls on the good guys to spend most of the film trying to escape the crosshairs of the super advanced bad guy whilst at the same time plotting for a way to destroy him/her/it by the end of the film, especially since T2 has already done the job so damned well. That exact story has been told again and again and again...
    Another issue is that when T2 was release the CGI was such a step up over what had been seen before; it was a spectacle. As Kermode said, we were all wowed by it and even if your interest in the plot were to falter during that movie, you were almost certainly going to walk out of the cinema remembering how amazing the T-1000 was. - But that trick can't help a film these days.
    The quality of CGI is amazing in pretty much every film that Hollywood manufactures and there have been whole libraries of films that have made use of it. Film buffs no longer need ask, "How the hell did they do that?" - We all know "how it was done"; we are no longer surprised by the sight of the impossible splashed across our screens.
    In my opinion, the next Terminator film (if there ever is to be one) needs to be more clever, more thoughtful about it's story and its characters above all else; killer action and persistent CG droids? - Of course! It's a Terminator movie. But Hollywood needs to give us more than the same old variation on a theme we've been given movie after movie.

  • GEM
    GEM 7 days ago

    As a woman. Why can’t women participate in strong roles in movies they call for it. Perhaps make something new and different. Stop ruining classics

  • woodhd
    woodhd 11 days ago

    did mark actual say the sequel to alien eclipsed the original

  • Mr Bojangle
    Mr Bojangle 11 days ago

    Simon mayo always seems underwhelmed when talking to mark Kermode.

  • martin obrien
    martin obrien 12 days ago


  • Paul  Benham
    Paul Benham 14 days ago

    Everyone copying each other haha ;D

  • Tony Slater
    Tony Slater 17 days ago

    Any review that starts with, "It does great things for representation in films blah blah blah," is doomed to then be criticized as an actual film.

  • Tim Smith
    Tim Smith 18 days ago

    Well Mr Mark, the film exists (along with other such pointless sequels) because Hollywood in general have long ran out of ideas, and are therefore so desperate to try and recreate former glories, somewhat - even worse, when they actually go for a REMAKE.

  • Richard Foran
    Richard Foran 19 days ago

    Its just quick entertainment. The art or artist is less important these days. Lifes short why bother mulling over sets,actors ,cgi and logistics. Just do a lazy business plan aimed at China and sell sell sell.

  • Michelle
    Michelle 21 day ago

    I couldn't see it in your Sci-Fi playlist... but any chance of a review of Tarkovsky's Stalker?

  • AMERICARS Queensland
    AMERICARS Queensland 23 days ago

    I liked Terminator Dark fate, it was good, nice to see them together again.

  • Oliver Mercer
    Oliver Mercer 23 days ago

    I enjoyed Terminator Dark Fate I rate it 8/10 myself here in the UK 🇬🇧. T2 judgment Day in a big way always was open for sequels because Aronld lost his arm in the mill the loop is open for TDF. I have a good idea pitch for a dark Fate secqul that would bring an interesting angle narrative. I believe adult John Connor still lives in the future because of the paradox realm concept.

  • Mazza Spitz
    Mazza Spitz 24 days ago

    3 out of 5 and that's only because Arnie is back

  • 8Paul7
    8Paul7 24 days ago +1

    Dark Fate DID destroy the mythology - and that is why everyone and anyone with functional brain needs to ignore it.

  • lifeson90
    lifeson90 25 days ago

    Terminator Salvation was pretty good, genuinely original, doesnt deserve association with the others that failed

  • Bad Puppy
    Bad Puppy 26 days ago

    Typical feminist: all men evil, all men useless, kill all good male characters, replace with super kung fu warrior Uber woman.
    Get woke GFYS. I’ve seen every terminator movie in the theater, except this. This feminazi garbage will, never get a dime from me.

  • Will B
    Will B 26 days ago

    Big surprise. Money, money, money. That's all they are making these sequels for. If it turns a healthy profit they don't care if the film isn't critically successful. James Cameron said the fifth film was a 'renaissance'. And of course it was not. They ruined Die Hard in the same way. Don't watch these films and have not seen 'Genysis'. It's a waste of time

  • William Perry
    William Perry 26 days ago

    Time to kill off the franchise?

  • MrEddiyOwen
    MrEddiyOwen 26 days ago

    It's not about sequels, the concept of losing power to something we create is humanity. These films now, should be about an electronic mind control device which needs no physical form... Aka 'interference in our elections'

  • Limitless Guy
    Limitless Guy 27 days ago +1

    This film was rubbish. Be honest. Kills off John Conner & all the men & replaces it with 3 women. Kills off everything about T2 even the filmmaking that made T2 great. This film was Terminated and is the worst as a whole of all the Terminator movies, as it had a dark alterior motive to play politics instead of being true to a legacy & artform

  • Limitless Guy
    Limitless Guy 27 days ago +1

    This film was rubbish. Be honest. Kills off John Conner & all the men & replaces it with 3 women. Kills off everything about T2 even the filmmaking that made T2 great. This film was Terminated and is the worst as a whole of all the Terminator movies, as it had a dark alterior motive to play politics instead of being true to a legacy & artform

  • Limitless Guy
    Limitless Guy 27 days ago +1

    This film was rubbish. Be honest. Kills off John Conner & all the men & replaces it with 3 women. Kills off everything about T2 even the filmmaking that made T2 great. This film was Terminated and is the worst as a whole of all the Terminator movies, as it had a dark alterior motive to play politics instead of being true to a legacy & artform

  • fedoracore321
    fedoracore321 27 days ago +1

    I would say Predator did not need a sequel as well

  • The Master & your Daddy.
    The Master & your Daddy. 27 days ago +1

    This new Terminator was great .....!!!
    Love Terminator movies, each one is its own story, a new journey, enjoy it for
    for that. Dont compare it to any other Terminator movies.

  • Golden moments
    Golden moments 28 days ago

    Mark your understanding of physics is clearly limited.
    I don't know what the new Terminator is made of, but if the Terminator is made of a non-newtonian fluid, then there could potentially be a different dynamic to pressure and reactions to it.

  • AlexSoho BC
    AlexSoho BC 28 days ago

    A leaked picture of Grace from cancelled Dark Fate sequel! hcsgadget.b-cdn.net/wp-content/uploads/2019/09/rodney-trotter.jpg

  • Mr Bojangle
    Mr Bojangle 28 days ago

    Rise of the machines was my favourite

  • Shadow Dancer
    Shadow Dancer 28 days ago

    It can't be bargained with, it can't be reasoned with, it doesn't feel pity or remorse or fear and it absolutely will not stop ever until you are dead and after you're dead it will raise a family call itself Carl and specialize in drapes.

  • David Smith
    David Smith 28 days ago

    Go girl power... Flop!
    Terminator: nihilistic, inclusion, diversity, and equality social engineering edition.

  • stevkyt
    stevkyt 29 days ago +1

    Stupidly killing off John Connor undermines T1 and T2. It's a poor film with woke sensibities that of course feminist Kermode ignores. I am positive that this turkey will bomb.

  • Levent Taskan
    Levent Taskan 29 days ago

    According to the box office, it doesn't have that much caché.

  • rocstar2001
    rocstar2001 29 days ago

    What a dreadful review.
    "Isn't it great that three strong wahmen star in a film, it's so great"
    No it isn't...

  • Skinny Ebert, Siskel with Hair

    15-cert. and Walt Disney Studios doesn't quite go together.

  • RandomNooby
    RandomNooby 29 days ago +1

    I feel Mr Kermode is falling prey to the fundamental neural structure that seems to exist in all human consciousness that leads to the phrase "Things were better way back in...." Terminator, aliens all just get better and better for me, more budget, more technical and artistic geniuses on set, more cash, more technology, actors maybe not as good as the originals but more than good enough

  • konroth rec.
    konroth rec. Month ago

    come on, too much time passed already, this is no series at all, it's a franchise.

  • Paul Alexander
    Paul Alexander Month ago

    This 8 minute 4 second review had more thought put to into it than terminateher dark woke.

  • Steve Perrin
    Steve Perrin Month ago +1

    Salvation was the best Terminator sequel, I know it's not great... but it actually dared to do something different.
    All the others have been lazy rehashes of the first film with some terrible writing.

  • Eddie Romero
    Eddie Romero Month ago

    This movie is a mix of Democrats, Liberals, Feminists and hollywierds ... Fake news just told us it was produced by J.C to be the 3rd sequel of T1 and T2..

  • John G
    John G Month ago

    LOL another woke flop. Well played, moviegoers.

  • Zarbazan Zarbaev
    Zarbazan Zarbaev Month ago

    Bullshit. "Best terminator movie since T-2"? Salvation wasn't a good movie, but it had Christian Bale, some distinctive concept, and atmosphere. This "Dak fates" has none of it. It is only better than previous one

  • system2
    system2 Month ago

    He'll be back, entirely digital, in a reboot near you. Actors beware, but for living relatives: cash-in time.

  • Jeremy The Conqueror

    I haven't seen this movie yet, so correct me if I'm wrong, but Mackenzie's character looks to be the most interesting thing in it. As I understand it, she's a human/cybernetic hybrid soldier from the future, and her mission is to protect the Mexican girl. That sounds pretty exciting right there, and I like that in all the scenes I've seen, she places herself between the girl and whatever she perceives as a threat. All the other 'Terminator' trappings (Sarah Connor, Arnie, bad terminators, the title) have to be there because the basic concept isn't original.

  • Stevekellymusic official

    I'm sure that given they really can't win - Arnie is too old and the story was wrapped up nicely in T2, the movie is about as good as it could be bearing those vague points in mind. I'm still going to see it :)

  • rod sims
    rod sims Month ago

    T3 was orders of magnitude better . and can't be compared to the T1 or T2

  • Owen Kilfeather
    Owen Kilfeather Month ago

    in thee comments some unsavoury comments about the women in this film by a few thirsty loser dudes typing in their parents' basements between wanks

  • glenn mcilvenna
    glenn mcilvenna Month ago

    “Total bag of shite” -review done

  • Zorn Casteel
    Zorn Casteel Month ago

    Savior of the future human race - White male, American - Killed .. Effectively replaced by a Mexican ILLEGAL IMMIGRANT *female* .
    ~ All anybody needs to know ... It's no accident. .. Next.

  • TheLambo2
    TheLambo2 Month ago +1

    Saw the film and enjoyed it
    Thank goodness an English reviewer reviews this movie. More balanced less hysterical reporting from a reliable source.
    I saw this movie and it was very enjoyable

  • Blatherskite
    Blatherskite Month ago

    There was no compelling reason (apart from money!) to tell this story and, due to the timey-wimey nature of it, the Terminator series was inevitably going to become increasingly precarious and illogical with each additional episode. Terminator 2 was already pushing it (imho) because - unlike the original - the sequel raised questions as to why, if the machines were going to try AGAIN, they didn't simply go a bit further back in time to, say, the 1800s and snuff the Connor line in a technologically primitive era where no-one would understand what a cyborg was, let alone have any effective means of combating one. But, as we know, films that make money get sequels ordered, regardless of whether there's any sense in it or scope for it. We get the films that we deserve.

  • warren Philbert
    warren Philbert Month ago

    James Cameron's sonic signature fortunately! was absent!. ✌️💚

    GATURKS Month ago

    TVclipr GATURKS says: Killing John was counter productive for the franchise. They could've just had Adult John working at the plant and when the Terminators😱 come, he could've been terrified but the big reveal is the Terms are no longer after him😯, but his coworker Dani. Once that's realized, John's role takes the place Dani's brother served in the 1st 20 min of the film. John's reaction to the abilities of the new Terminator and Mommie coming to save them would've added a much more dept to the scenes. 💪🏾🔥
    IF JOHN DIED 😔 (like Dani's brother), it could've been revealed that half LEGION'S mission had been accomplished stopping John & Dani from meeting on the job & having the baby that would've led the new resistance. But, because John died, Dani's path takes on the new role as leader.... and the rest of the script stays the same.❤
    IF JOHN HAD LIVED🤔, leave everything the same, but saving Dani would spark an interest between him & Dani leaving the script to be about saving their unborn child... like Sarah Conner and Kyle Reese... the fans keep John and the saga continues in tru TERMINATOR fashion.
    ** But the ending of DF.... they should've had the power spike stuck in the eye of the combined TERM not just the Robot one... doesn't seem as if that would killed the Liquid TERM since it can separate from the skeleton. Just me or no?
    HOLLYWOOD I'M HERE IF YOU NEED ME😎 (I have the new Friday the 13th ready to roll and it's epic! Ive done the impossible!)

  • JellyJelly
    JellyJelly Month ago

    12 people wrote this movie
    12 ....

  • A Fera
    A Fera Month ago

    was expecting a 2003 2004 cobra review

    DYLAN FRATER Month ago

    Nail on the head

  • Spike2501
    Spike2501 Month ago

    I pretty much entirely agree with Kermode. I would add that I think Dark Fate has the ingredients to be a really great Terminator movie, on par with T2, but they squandered it.
    I think Grace is a great character, by far the best part of the film. That first fight scene between Grace and the Rev-9 was fantastic, and she looks and acts the part. But the rest of the movie failed to deliver on the promise of that first fight scene. From there on out Grace is more or less out of commission because of her "metabolism," which I feel isn't handled very consistently and seems like an unnecessary nerf to a character who is otherwise supposed to be a bad-ass enhanced super soldier from the future. It's really just a lazy way for the writers to create a sense of peril when it's convenient. She shines a little bit again in the final fight scene, but not anywhere near the level of the first one.
    I also think the Rev-9 is actually a great villian. I didn't find myself questioning why it was a combination of an endo-skeleton and a "mimetic polyalloy" (though I was wondering whether it was really two Terminators, with two separate AIs, or one Terminator controlled by one AI).
    But the character Dani, I hate to say, may be the weakest link in the movie. Simply, she's just badly written. Now first I have to say that I think there's always been a problem with the whole Terminator premise: It's really hard to believe that John Conner is actually able to become "John Conner," the thinly-veiled Christ metaphor that he's destined to be. But I think it works in T2 (in spite of Edward Furlong) because they don't bother trying to portray exactly how this kid becomes the leader of a whole resistance against Skynet (or Legion or *insert Satan metaphor here*), and so instead our imaginations fill in the gaps--this is what makes it work. I think this is one of the biggest problems with all of the subsequent Terminator films (at least the ones I've seen: T3, Salvation, and now Dark Fate): They all explicitly show John Conner becoming (or having become) "John Conner," and I think the result cannot possibility live up to anyone's expectations.
    In Dark Fate, they make the same mistake with Dani: They try to portray her transformation from Dani Ramos to "Dani Ramos." And not only do I think it's a mistake to even attempt this at all--better to leave it to our imaginations--the way they attempt to work the transformation into Dani's character arc is just badly executed and lazy. Dani starts out as already a strong and independent person with a loving family and a good job (the writers go out of their way to show all this). Then she loses effectively everything in an instant, and she handles it extremely well--especially considering how puzzlingly silent Grace is on the reason why Dani is being targeted. This is supposed to be patched over by Sarah Conner quickly showing up and providing an explanation (her "womb"), which sets up what's supposed to the big twist of the movie: That it is Dani, not some son she will have, who becomes the leader of the resistance. Notwithstanding that you can spot this "twist" from a mile away, once it is actually revealed when (very late in the film) Grace finally tells Dani her destiny, Grace's only explanation for why she didn't say so sooner is, paraphrasing only slightly: "Future Dani told me not to because past Dani wouldn't be able to handle it, but now I can because past Dani has become future Dani." So Dani, who was established from the get go to be a very strong person, who was able to handle suddenly getting attacked by a killer robot and meeting a cybernetically enhanced supper soldier (both of which time-traveled from a post-apocalyptic future), who was able to handle losing her entire life (including the deaths of her father and brother)--somehow she wouldn't be able to handle also learning that she was going to become the leader of a human resistance against an army of machines...ok...And what had actually "changed" that made Dani Ramos into "Dani Ramos"? Well, she learned how to extemporize a corny Braveheart-style motivational speech. Oh I guess she also learned how to drive, and how to shoot a gun (after spending what could not have been more than 5 minutes on a shooting range). But it's mainly learning how to do the Braveheart speech. Ohhhh. Kaaaay.
    I also hate to say that I think Hamilton and Schwarzenegger should not have been in this movie. They're not needed to make the story work, and their very presence pushes the Terminator time-line right off it's already shaky foundations. Like how the original Terminator was just Kyle, Sarah, and the T-800, this should have been just Grace, Dani, and the Rev-9, in an alternate continuity from the other films. Hamilton and Schwarzenegger are only in this movie to help it sell, because sadly Hollywood does not think it would otherwise (and sadly they're probably right).
    I think there are other good things in this movie. For one, I kind of like how this Schwarzenegger Terminator deconstructs the hyper-masculinity that the original Terminator represents: The unstoppably potent cyborg killing machine has become an effectively impotent (he and his wife do not have sex) family man who sells drapes. Though of course, the writers still have him able and willing to become the old Terminator at the drop of a hat (including abandoning his family), when it's convenient. This is Dark Fate's problem, which makes it especially frustrating and disappointing: it has a lot of good ideas, but they are badly executed.

    • TheAlfsterino
      TheAlfsterino Month ago

      The film was basically T1 with bits of T2...total rehash/lazy reboot all they did was kill off the person who stopped Skynet and replaced him with a girl and a new Skynet and had Terminators chasing after her while being protected by a nice Terminator... Hollywood is devoid of original ideas now..apart from rehash old popular films and swap male characters for female characters...it's boring/tedious and insulting to women because they could create new franchises with women as the stars but they can;t be bothered.

  • Big Sky Blue
    Big Sky Blue Month ago

    Sarah Connor (standing next to a cyborg and 1/2 human 1/2 machine hybrid) “Cause were not machines!”. Why even fight back? Apparently someone else will step up as the future hero anyway.

  • Big Sky Blue
    Big Sky Blue Month ago

    The movie is dreadfully awful. I hate movies where theres no consequences. Such weak writing. Characters murder ppl in broad daylight, have car chases on highways, blow up buildings, steal planes/helicopters etc...and cops never show up. Plus, a giant magnet would be all you need.

  • K O
    K O Month ago

    What would be interesting is if they made the third installment of the “official” series pick up after T2, the rise of the machines is prevented, but humanity still manages to destroy itself without an AI behind its near extinction. Look at where we’re headed right now. It’s not a stretch. John Connor still becomes a leader in a post WW3 world, it’s just the resistance means something different. It ties up with the “there is no fate“ stuff from the first two films and that a “judgment day” is inevitable. You could still pull in the CIA agent the T800 model was based on as Arnold, Linda Hamilton, etc. Humanity is the terminator of humanity, no machines necessary, and a future war is inevitable. It would be an interesting commentary on humanity and button up a stagnant and overdone property.

    • Andrew Leeke
      Andrew Leeke Month ago

      That's not really a million miles away from this movie.
      People get very caught up on John Conner... if judgement day advances into the future, then it can't be Conner in charge.

  • djnkosi
    djnkosi Month ago

    Saw it yesterday. Mark's review is spot on!

  • Eric
    Eric Month ago

    Movie was exciting and interesting