Winning blend of culture clash, generation gap, and female empowerment… MoreWinning blend of culture clash, generation gap, and female empowerment as an English-born Indian girl Jess tries to pursue her dream of playing soccer, much to the consternation of her deeply-rooted traditional family. This was the last movie when you might've asked yourself "Who's Keira Knightley?" as 2003 was her springboard to superstardom - you may have heard about a movie released just one month earlier she was in about some cursed pirates. Her appeal is just as evident here as the striker who recruits Jess off the park pitch into an organized league and the two become fast friends. Parminder Negra is equally charismatic as Jess and a pity she hasn't been in more movies. Sharp eyes will recognize Anupam Kher playing her father as Bradley Cooper's sympathetic psychiatrist from Silver Linings Playbook.
Jess' attempt to keep her feet in both worlds provides an enthralling look into a culture with very different values, existing as a country within a country. A crowd-pleaser to be sure, and may be faulted for trying to please too much by fitting everything in a too-neat little package by the end. I also felt uneasy with the evolving relationship the team coach who appears mid-twenties has towards the girls, who presumably are near 18 since they talk about attending university soon, but look more like they are 15.
"Katherine Brewster, have you sustained any injuries?"
"Drop dead, you… More"Katherine Brewster, have you sustained any injuries?"
"Drop dead, you asshole!"
"I am unable to comply."
Don't understand why a lot of people didn't like this sequel as I thought T3 was a lot of fun. Stubborn Cameron loyalists? While the screenplay progression echoes with series familiarity, the T1 & T2 references all clicked with the right amount of humor; Arnie's traditional introductory search for clothes and sunglasses gag is a good example. Plenty of spectacular, OTT Terminator-style action scenes including the incredible firetruck/semi chase/mayhem. Only the nonsensical bathroom brawl and and overly prolonged final fight with the TX felt like excess baggage during this thrillride. Kristanna Loken is made-to-order deadly gorgeous as the new Terminator although she is given even less personality than T2's liquid metalman Robert Patrick. However, adding two legit top-drawer actors to the cast gives this entry an extra boost that you could forgive being absent in the first two movies. Nick Stahl gives John Connor the right level of trepidation and survivalist savvy that a burden of knowing you're supposed to become a hero in the future would bring. Meanwhile, Claire Danes' bountiful skill turns a character that on paper exists mostly to scream and flee into a 3-dimensional woman coming to grips with sudden loss and the horrifying knowledge of what is to come. The great gutsy ending was a real surprise bombshell - literally. On the DVD, the commentary track includes a lot of Arnie which is always gold and there's a very funny deleted scene that finally explains why all the T-800 series models look & sound like him. Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines favorably advances the overall story while successfully avoiding the common sequel trap of feeling like a cash-grab, which makes the first 3 Terminators the most satisfyingly entertaining trio of action movies behind only the original Star Wars and Lord of the Rings trilogies.