By Charlie Brigden
Title: Terminator: Genisys
Composer: Lorne Balfe
The Film: The fifth film in the franchise reboots itself by revisiting key moments from earlier films. Look out for Sarah Connor rescuing Kyle Reese and an older Arnie facing off against his 1984/2029 self.
The Score: Idiosyncratic. The score is surprisingly emotional, with a theme of fate and hope running through the film covered by desolate solo piano, and some nice atmospheric textures where Balfe blends orchestral and synth elements. He pays tribute to the original two scores in varying ways, there are snippets here and there of the love theme, and the percussive ostinato is played around with. But some of the action material sounds generic, and as a result not very interesting.
Distinguishing Features: The ethereal and emotional ‘Sarah & Kyle’, the strong ‘I Am More’ with its segue from noble brass to menacing electronics, the revealing (and Daft Punk-esque) ‘Cyberdyne’. And the modern variation on Brad Fiedel’s T2 credits that is ‘Terminated’.
Final Thoughts: After two listens, I find it a conflicting album. Some of it is very good, not just the aforementioned lovely emotional string work but also the electronic elements, but it occasionally falls down with the lack of personality in some of the setpieces. This does however present a thematic connection with the film of man versus machine – Genisys is pretty strong when it doesn’t sound like it was written by a Terminator.
Terminator: Genisys is available now digitally from Skydance Productions and Paramount Pictures