HomeoldThe Anti-Life, Anti-Human politics of “Terminator Genisys”

The Anti-Life, Anti-Human politics of “Terminator Genisys”

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I had not been aware that Sonny Bunch, the executive editor of the Washington Free Beacon, a former film critic for the Washington Times and assistant editor of books and arts for the Weekly Standard, is now guest blogging for the Washington Post.

Given Bunch’s expertise in the fields of culture and politics, as well as his role as a film critic for the Beacon, it is unsurprising that his guest blog today concerns a review of the new Terminator film.

As a competent film reviewer would, Bunch discusses the film Terminator Genisys (which is released today) in the context of the Terminator franchise, which includes some highly regarded films and others that are less so.

This may be a satisfactory conclusion, but it is nevertheless unclear how this relates to our own situation. I am gratified that you have inquired.

The article commences with a more detailed and nuanced examination of a topic that I had previously contemplated on numerous occasions but had not yet attempted to articulate in writing. It is this author’s contention that the first two Terminator films can be considered classic pro-life tracts.

Bunch proceeds to provide further evidence to support his assertion.

Those who remain unconvinced are invited to consider the following. I can appreciate your skepticism. For the sake of argument, let us consider the possibility for a moment.

He presents his argument in a skilful and persuasive manner, drawing upon insights that may not have been previously considered. The following is a lengthy quotation from Bunch’s review.

Finally, how is the T-800’s (Arnold Schwarzenegger) mission to go back in time and kill Sarah Connor (Linda Hamilton) described? “A kind of retroactive abortion”. “The Terminator culminates in an impoverished single mother being impregnated after a one-night stand with a man who dies shortly afterwards. Despite the obvious advantages of terminating the pregnancy, she chooses to keep the baby because, well, her boy JC is the saviour of the human race.

The attachment to human life is more pronounced in the second film. John Connor (Edward Furlong) spends much of his time educating the Terminator (Schwarzenegger) about the importance of not ending human life. In fact, by the end of the film, he doesn’t even wound them! Quite an improvement. Philosophically, Skynet’s apocalyptic fervour is presented by JC as karmic retribution for mankind’s propensity to inflict violence on one another. More striking, however, is Sarah’s speech to Skynet’s would-be creator, Miles Dyson (Joe Morton), about the wonder of human creation.

“F-ing men like you built the hydrogen bomb. Men like you thought it up. You think you’re so creative,” Sarah declares. “You don’t know what it’s like to really create something, to create a life, to feel it growing inside you. All you know how to create is death and destruction!”

Bunch’s astute insights into Terminator One and Terminator Two are only magnified when he contrasts the anti-natal, anti-life, anti-human (all my characterisations of his observations) nature of Terminator Genisys.

In light of my desire for you to read the review, I will conclude with two brief thoughts.

Firstly, a review of the available reviews and plot summaries in anticipation of Terminator Genisys suggests that the film is impossibly complicated, incoherent to the point of absurdity. The narrative is so back and forth in time that it would require script notes and a teaching assistant to even begin to understand what is going on.

Secondly, the first two films implicitly celebrate the preciousness, uniqueness and beauty of life. As Bunch elucidates the message, it can be understood that “life is precious and must be protected and nurtured so that it can flourish and the world can benefit from it.”

In contrast, the film Terminator Genisys presents a diametrically opposed perspective. One might inquire as to whether love is a factor in this equation. One might inquire as to whether the concept of sacrifice is applicable in this context. The unique relationship between a mother and son is a theme that is explored in the film. This is a concept that is reminiscent of the 1980s. A perusal of Bunch’s work reveals that this inversion is anything but subtle.

One might be forgiven for concluding that this reflects the unique challenges currently facing us.


Daniel Miller is responsible for nearly all of National Right to Life News' political writing.

With the election of Donald Trump to the U.S. presidency, Daniel Miller developed a deep obsession with U.S. politics that has never let go of the political scientist. Whether it's the election of Joe Biden, the midterm elections in Congress, the abortion rights debate in the Supreme Court or the mudslinging in the primaries - Daniel Miller is happy to stay up late for you.

Daniel was born and raised in New York. After living in China, working for a news agency and another stint at a major news network, he now lives in Arizona with his two daughters.

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