If you woke up tomorrow to discover you were Christian Bale or Arnold Schwarzenegger, that would be kinda cool. But if your doctor explained that you had been kidnapped by Skynet and replaced by a machine covered in human tissue? Not so much.
In this, the third “Terminator Salvation” trailer, we get to know Mr. Marcus Wright. He is a man that the entire “Terminator” franchise will come to hinge upon and a man of many secrets. And now, it is time to begin unveiling the truth.
0:09: “We’ve been fighting a long time,” says an ominous voice-over from Christian Bale, as we see glimpses of classic-looking Terminators being manufactured.
0:14: As the numbers “2018” fill the screen over a dead Terminator, Bale continues: “We are outnumbered, by machines.”
0:19: “Humans have a strength that cannot be measured.” We see something that looks like the world’s biggest outdoor rave — in the rain — as Nine Inch Nails’ “The Day the Whole World Went Away” kicks in. Something tells me, however, that this ain’t no dance flick. Are they being imprisoned?
0:28: Our first shot of John Connor (Bale), finishing his thoughts as he recites them into some kind of recording device. “This is John Connor,” he says, reflecting back on what he has seen.
0:31: Some sort of aircraft/spaceship over a desert landscape, watching another one.
0:34: “If you’re listening to this, you are the resistance.” We see a helicopter.
0:37: Now for the good part! The helicopter lands on a Terminator, and we see a military-boot-clad figure step out and finish the machine with a few gunshots to its head. As the music swells, the camera pulls back for the reveal: It’s John Connor. Sure, we saw it in the last trailer — but it’s still a cool shot.
0:42: “I thought I knew,” he says as a tow truck plows through a wrecked car. “Something has changed.”
0:46: Sadly, it’s our only less-than-stellar shot of the trailer, as a motorcycle times its slide perfectly to go underneath the tumbling car. It’s reminiscent of the big shot in the “Fast and Furious” trailer — and emblematic of Hollywood’s new love affair (see “Wanted,” “G.I. Joe”) with laws-of-reality-defying CGI silliness.
0:49: “It’s taking human prisoners,” John explains as we see the giant Terminator from the earlier trailer, grabbing a human.
0:56: “It’s replicating human tissue,” he explains. “And in this future, I don’t know that we can win this war.”
0:59: Now we begin diving into the Sam Worthington character of Marcus Wright — a resistance soldier and central figure in “Salvation.” We can see him injured and being rushed into some sort of emergency room, as Bryce Dallas Howard’s Kate Connor (John’s wife) says, “Let’s see what we’ve got here,” and tends to him. Realizing he isn’t human, Wright is knocked unconscious.
1:07: “This thing is something we’ve never seen before,” she says, terrified.
1:11: The restrained figure says: “My name is Marcus Wright.”
1:15: “You think you’re human?” John asks him.
1:18: “I am human,” Wright responds. As the camera closes in on John haunted by shadows, he lets Wright free. The man screams out.
1:30: The battle resumes, as we see Terminators attacking and Marcus in various forms.
1:37: “What are you?” John shouts. Marcus replies, “I don’t know.”
1:42: A fighter plane goes past, dropping bombs on a battlefield.
1:45: Title card: “Forget the Past”
1:46: Wright throws a chair through a window, breaking out from a sort-of holding room.
1:47: Title card: “On May 21st”
1:49: Marcus runs; John fires a machine gun angrily.
1:50: Title card: “The end begins”
1:51: We see quick shots of a helicopter crashing, a Terminator chopped below the waist pulling itself and an explosion.
1:58: Moon Bloodgood with Marcus in the rain. Incidentally, this is the controversial topless scene that director McG may have to cut if he wants a PG-13.
1:59: A futuristic, armed-to-the-teeth chopper squares off with a car trying to cross a narrow bridge. It shoots the bridge in the middle.
2:03: “If we stay the course, we are dead!” John Connor barks into his radio. “We are all dead!” Am I the only one who can’t help but imagine him screaming next: “Do you want me to go out and trash your lights?”
2:06: John kisses somebody who may or may not be his wife.
2:09: Machines, motorcycles and humans all square off in quick succession.
2:13: It all ends with a mushroom cloud.
2:15: The big reveal: Marcus Wright, exposed as a Terminator cyborg in a way reminiscent of how we’ve seen Arnold in the past, looks at John Connor and says: “I’m the only hope you’ve got.”
2:20: The “exploding movie poster” reveals the film’s apocalyptic logo.
Check out everything we’ve got on “Terminator Salvation.”
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