A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
Movie is somewhat about sacrifice; characters frequently sacrifice themselves to help others, though that's sometimes overshadowed by all of the action scenes. Empowering in that a woman is the one who saves the world (rather than the mother of a male savior), but male characters still frequently jump in to save the day.
Positive Role Models
Three strong female characters, one of whom is of Latinx heritage. The story isn't meaty enough for them to really shine, but Dani does learn how to behave under pressure, and her leadership qualities emerge.
Violence & Scariness
Very strong, intense sci-fi/fantasy violence. Heavy guns and shooting. Characters are shot, stabbed, sliced, and run through with chunks of metal, as well as thrown from moving vehicles. Car crashes and explosions. Dead bodies. Pools of blood. Robots flying to pieces. Futuristic war sequences. Lots of weapons.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Time travelers shown naked; bare male and female bottoms shown. Brief female side view, from a distance. Couple kisses/makes out.
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Strong, fairly frequent language includes "f--k," "s--t," "motherf----r," "a--hole," "son of a bitch," "goddamn," and "ass," plus a middle-finger gesture.
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Products & Purchases
Part of a popular franchise, with lots of off-screen merchandise available.
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
A character says that she "drinks until she blacks out." Characters drink bottles of beer with slices of lime.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Terminator: Dark Fate is the sixth movie in the popular Terminator series. It ignores the third, fourth, and fifth movies and brings back older characters, including Sarah Connor (Linda Hamilton) and the original Terminator himself, Arnold Schwarzenegger. Sci-fi/fantasy violence is intense: Expect lots of weapons, characters being shot and dying, blood, crashes, explosions, futuristic war sequences, and robots flying apart. Characters are also stabbed, sliced, run through with chunks of metal, and thrown from moving vehicles. Language is also strong, with uses of "f--k," "s--t," "motherf----r," and more. Time travelers arrive, as always, naked; both male and female bottoms are shown, and there's a very brief, distant side view of a naked woman. A young couple is seen making out. Characters drink beer, and a character remarks that she regularly "drinks until she blacks out." To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
This sixth Terminator movie erases the events of the previous three (dud) sequels but winds up feeling half-erased itself. It's like a dull, pale, irrelevant carbon copy of a once glorious hit. Not only does Terminator: Dark Fate reunite Hamilton and Arnold Schwarzenegger, but James Cameron produced and contributed to the story (along with about half a dozen other writers). Yet none of them really seems to have a reason to be here, other than to make a few reference-tinged jokes. Their presence actually detracts from the main plot -- that of Grace and Dani -- but even if it didn't, Grace and Dani's story doesn't offer anything new or surprising.
Not even the evil Terminator in Terminator: Dark Fate offers anything new. He recycles the liquid metal idea from Terminator 2: Judgment Day, with one new power that makes no sense: He can separate his skeleton from his skin and be in two places at once. (You'd think the skin would be more vulnerable, but the movie does nothing with this idea.) Director Tim Miller, whose previous work on Deadpool was bright, colorful, and smooth, turns in sludgy, choppy action here, with a dull luster; it's often hard to tell what's going on. There's also a distinct lack of suspense and humor, except for one line in which Schwarzenegger (ironically) declares himself to be "extremely funny."
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.