I'm probably going to be the only one to be okay with the opening scene, since the fate of that character won't live up as well as in T2, and just go downhill from there.
Ok, hear me out on this. This does follow the same route the franchise has followed ever since (someone protects somebody) and it does throw out every conceivable (or terrible) thing you can think of in a Terminator movie annoyingly, but besides that, what Terminator Dark Fate does to make sure it's not a hollow and soulless copy paste of *insert title here* manages to make this a rather unique entry in the franchise. How? By simply shredding out pages from the failed sequels and try to flesh these ideas in the best way possible, whether it's a buddy-cop type relation between Grace and Sarah, or a Villain who can double his body from an already built Terminator. The sweat and tears of the studio are to be seen and heard in here, as they (and the all star cast of names they paid as much as a Pixar movie's budget) tried to come up with the best possible product they could've done, good or bad.
If anything, it's probably the best piece of feminism movement I've ever seen than whatever Disney's trying to force now, because the 3 leads in this rule so much. We get to see the return of Sarah Connor and, even after 35 Years, she still looks the same to me, if not for a few new tweaks here and there. Mackenzie Davis' character, Grace, is fine. She's just "female enhanced Kyle Reese" and that's it (still,cool idea to have the enhanced human thing at play,especially after Salvation ruined everything from the trailers apparently), especially because at the heart of all the mumbo jumbo, is Natalia Reyes, who has no right being as good as it is. Better "I won't hide in a corner, I'll fight!" Line delivery than Transformers 5 (another Paramount movie), and I can definitely see someone seeing her as a figure of inspiration. It sounds like I'm talking like I'm some kind of Executive with the big glasses on, but that's really what it is. A big Female Action extravaganza with Action Mumbo Jumbo that'll make you smile even in the darkest of times.
Surprisingly, they also continue the emotional beats from T2 with Arnie's T-800, even if it's a different T-800. I guess someone will roll their eyes when they'll find out he's in it for a short amount of time, but it passed out to me flawlessly, even in a sad way. This one won't stop the Nostalgia Factor from letting it all out. Yes, even in a big-ass 3rd Act that is so over-the-top and noisy, I kinda felt fearful for the main cast of characters.
Gabriel Luna's Rev-9 is, alongside Robert Patrick's T-1000, the most evil shit you'll ever witness in a Terminator movie. Basically they shredded the T-X concept from T3 and made it all the more creepy.
If there's any flaws to point is that, again, it repeats a story structure we've all seen before, so that may tire some people...most people up (and it is,so no issues there), and the R-Rating is either misguided or overused. Not saying it should've been PG-13 ('cause we all know how that turned out), but I almost couldn't have stood a "Fuck" or "Shit" every 3 seconds, or the fact that a bloody or gruesome kill wasn't done as great as the previous ones. And, as good as this is, it still feels as if the franchise wants to get self-terminated.
Although if they're going to be this great (with a big cast of talents who give a damn about the movie instead of hiring the guy from Thor 2 and doing a mess), I hope they won't get terminated. We'll see at the Box Office... Paramount opened Pandora's Box, and it'll be up to them to see if these characters are really back, or they're just back to have another Judgement Day….with the Audience. Oh,and see it in IMAX,obviously.