Watch Terminator 4: Salvation
It goes without saying that the “best” Terminator film was the first, simply because it *was* the first! There is something to be said for originality, after all. Still I am far more impressed with “Terminator Salvation” for a couple of reasons:
First, the theme of the other Terminator films is worn out. How many times can we watch a film about one terminator chasing some people all over the country before it gets old? I always found the brief war scenes in those films far more intriguing, and I often wondered why the script writers did not include a lot more of them. At last, they have! The whole film is about the war, and Skynet is no longer some distant, mostly unseen enemy but a true adversary who is visibly present in every scene. That is what I have wanted to see– the WAR against the machines!– not a single terminator chasing people a few people around in circles again.
Second, the special effects of this film were awesome. Whatever might be lacking in terms of acting skills (which Terminator film had good acting anyway?), it made up for it with special effects. The Terminators are so realistic that I have literally had a few nightmares about them– just the kind of scare I love from a movie! The only aspect that lacked realism is that the Terminators seem to be incompetent marksmen for being such advanced machines. How many rounds does it take to hit a target, after all? “Spray and Pray” seems to be how Terminators shoot, which results in far more misses than hits, and that makes little sense to me when our contemporary computer-guided missiles can strike with pinpoint accuracy. It also seems like an awful waste of ammunition to me. Nevertheless, I can see why it is a necessary part of the show. We could not have Terminators who shoot with pinpoint accuracy without blowing away all hope for human victory now, could we? Ah, such unrealistic elements are a necessary evil. This is science *fiction,* after all!
All in all, this is my personal favorite of all the Terminator films. It may not have the originality of the first, but it is certainly the most impressive in terms of war scenes and special effects. This is why I am giving it a five-star rating.