Terminator 3: Rise Of The Machines (2003)

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Overall Rating 61%
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Ranked #426
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Connections: The Terminator

It's been 10 years since John Connor saved Earth from Judgment Day, and he's now living under the radar, steering clear of using anything Skynet can trace. That is, until he encounters T-X, a robotic assassin ordered to finish what T-1000 started. Good thing Connor's former nemesis, the Terminator, is back to aid the now-adult Connor... just like he promised. --TMDb
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Review by Chad
Added: July 13, 2004
Taking place ten years after the events of Terminator 2, we now find a twenty-three year-old John Connor drifting from city to city, trying to avoid all computer and identification systems for fear of SkyNet finding him. His efforts were in vain, however, as a new type of cyborg was sent back in time to kill John and a handful of other important people off; this time, the machine is a T-X, a terminator that was designed to kill other terminators. Along the way, John meets up with Kate Petersen, a woman who will end up being second-in-command in the future, just under John. Sent back by the human resistance to protect them is another T-800... the same make and model as the one from the last two movies, but it's a different machine, so there is no memories of the past events. The terminator drops the knowledge on them that John's efforts to destroy SkyNet in the last film were all for naught, as the project has been picked up by somebody else: Kate's father. To top things off, Judgment Day occurs just three hours from now. The trio attempt to prevent this from happening, but can you really change the future, or is everything predetermined?

Nice little finish to the series right here, indeed. The storyline keeps the mood of the previous film in the series, featuring the same types of characters and events, as well as keeping the combination of action and storyline flowing perfectly. Since James Cameron wasn't involved with this one, I was half-expecting a reworking of the personalities and events to better appeal to today's masses; however, this was not the case here as director Jonathan Mostow kept the events and storylines from the previous two films well in check, and even managed to drop a couple of references to those films throughout this one.

Terminator 2 featured some special effects that were far superior to those found in The Terminator, so it's only natural that this entry in the series would feature effects that were much better than in T2. While there's nothing here that is as revolutionary as the T-1000 in Terminator 2, there's definitely some nice stuff to be found. The effects work with the "hero" terminator, for example, was really brought up-to-date; there's scenes where he works on his own internal parts through his stomach, and scenes where you can see through the bullet-holes in his face to whatever is going on behind him. Nothing major, but very nice to see. The T-X also had some great effects work going on for her, having an almost flawlessly-implemented system of morphing her hand and arm into a weapon, and morphing her body to look like that of someone else.

Once again, Arnold Schwarzenegger has returned to the role of the T-800 terminator, and once again, he managed to break out of his typical type of acting and bring something nice to the movie. While he didn't do as great as he did in T2, he was still a few notches above his average. Kristanna Loken plays the T-X ("terminatrix"), and keeps the line of bad-ass silent villains going nicely. Nick Stahl takes over for Edward Furlong as John Connor, and does a decent enough job with the role. He did get a bit tedious in parts, and did suffer from some over-acting in others, but overall he pulled off the role to an acceptable enough degree. Finally, Claire Danes plays Kate, in the most disappointing role of the movie. While Claire wasn't overly bad by herself, she just didn't seem to fit in very well with the cast, and her line delivery seemed too forced in a higher-than-acceptable number of scenes.

Even with my minor gripes, this is definitely worth the viewing if you enjoyed the previous parts of the series. If you've not seen those either, shame on you... check them out if you enjoy action films that feature a pretty solid storyline to keep things moving. While this one wouldn't beat out T2 for the honor of being the best in the series, it does come pretty close. 7/10.
Schillinger #1: Schillinger - added August 22, 2004 at 2:48am
While T2 was one of my favorite movies, this one was pretty weak. It was almost exactly the same as Part 2, and Skynet was destroyed in the last film (preventing the war from happening). Their explanation on how the war eventually happened was pathetic, and made you lose hope. This thing shouldn't have been made, and Part 4 is going to be worse.
Big D #2: Big D - added August 24, 2004 at 3:11pm
WHOA!!! In part 3, the Terminator's enemy is T-X...a chick! Kristanna Loken is amazing, by playing as an amazing enemy.
Crispy #3: Crispy - added September 10, 2004 at 8:09am
I'm happy that Arnold wasn't as emotional as he was in the second film. He's only a machine after all, and the second one made him out to be more caring than i thought he should have been
MrDerp #4: MrDerp - added December 31, 2004 at 6:42pm
What I enjoyed is how they added humor into the film, and how it was just plain fun to watch with all the destruction going on.
Bluesummers #5: Bluesummers - added March 7, 2005 at 3:29am
Oookay. I went into this movie with very little hope. After all, we're missing James Cameron and most of all, Linda Hamilton. Surprisingly enough, they did something I didn't expect. This is not a happy movie, no matter how funny it can be (and believe me, Arnold is at his finest right here!), it still has quite a downer for an ending. I didn't think Hollywood pulled this any more. Keep it up! And the thing people are all agog about, the T-X, I don't know about. Sure, she was hot, and provided a lot of circumstantial humor, but the T-1000 is still cooler. But all in all, definitely keeping in line with the series. It's worth a look, if not necessarily a buy.
ScarsRstarS #6: ScarsRstarS - added January 10, 2006 at 8:57am
I thought this was the worse out of all 3. I enjoyed it but compared to the other 2 then thubs down for me.
Nirrad #7: Nirrad - added June 21, 2008 at 1:29pm
I like this one better than the first, but not better than the second. The main reason I like this movie is probably due to the ending. I didn't see it coming, and I just loved it. A great comeback for the franchise, now lets see what the new trilogy has in store. 8/10 for me.
Lucid Dreams #8: Lucid Dreams - added May 26, 2010 at 11:48pm
Meh, it could have been better, but then again it could have been much worse. 7/10
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