Terminator is about a robot who is sent back in time to kill a woman who will give birth to a man named John Connor, who will lead the rebellion against the machines when they take over the world… in the year 2012. Whatever. It’s still a good movie. Using the year 2012 made a lot of sense at the time because everybody was worried that the Mayans were right about the world coming to an end. Anyway a man is also sent back in time to protect the woman.
The acting in this movie is great. Michael Biehn does a great job acting as the man who protects Sarah Connor. Sarah Connor is well played as well. Arnold does not need to do a lot of stellar acting as the machine, which is probably a good thing. Lance Henriksen does a good job as a police officer. You’ll notice a couple of the actors in this movie were also in the glorious, James Cameron Aliens with the bad ass colonial marines. At this point somebody probably just had a nerdgasm. Jennette Goldstein. Aww… Anyway another great actor is the guy who plays the psychologist. He is the only character besides the main protagonists who is in all three movies and he provides the necessary comic relief. This is one of the few Arnold Schwarzenegger movies with actually some decent acting in it.
The action in this movie like with most Arnold Schwarzenegger movies is the main focus and as usual is well done. We get an exciting gun fight in a dance club when Arnold first tries to kill Sarah and Biehn shows up to save her. Arnold guns down a police station and they have a great final confrontation against the terminator. They blow Arnold up twice until he is finally put down for the count.
The only humor in this serious movie comes from the humorous psychologist who interrogates Michael Biehn and has some great one liners such as calling Michael Biehn a lune. Fortunately, for the psychologist he leaves the police station right before Arnold shows up and guns down the police station.
The suspense in this movie is great. I have heard that this movie was actually based off of the first classic, non Rob Zombie of course Halloween movie. You can see some similarites because in this movie the terminator hunts down Sarah Connor and nothing seems to stand in his way, even the police, until a great hero shows up only this time it is Michael Biehn instead of Donald Pleasance.
The heroes in this movie are both great. Michael Biehn plays a great tough guy who also apparently has some deep feelings for Sarah Connor. Daww! Sarah Connor is one of my favorite women in all of Arnold Schwarzenegger’s movies. Although she doesn’t become truly epic until later, you probably already know where I’m going with that one. Damn, girl. You’ve been working out. Anyway she might not be quite as incredible in this movie, but that’s part of what makes her character so great. She is a normal woman who is hurled into a dangerous situation and the entire fate of the world rests on her son, who she hasn’t even had yet. By the way there is a plot twist in this movie as to where her son comes from that I won’t want to ruin for people who might not have seen this classic movie yet.
The villain in this movie is one of the best there is. Arnold has his only role on this list of my top ten favorite movies for him as the villain and does a great job with it. The thing about Arnold is usually he doesn’t have a lot of depth, but even in some of his movies where he is the hero such as Raw Deal or Commando he is such an intimidating force to be reckoned with that even the villains are pissing their pants when he shows up on their door step. This all makes for a great, cold heart, powerful villain that will beat the crap out of you if you get between him and his objective. Just look at those police officers getting gunned down. Dang.
The music in this movie is some great synthesizer work, which is very appropriate for this movie that deals with machines. Some of my favorite music just because I like this kind of genre was some good dance music in the dance club. Back then people actually knew how to dance. The music is a great contrast to when Arnold shows up in the club and is about to kill Sarah Connor. There is a happy, upbeat music in the background, but danger is coming towards our hero like Jaws in the water.
The setting for this movie is incredibly average because I have heard that this movie was originally, only supposed to be a low budget horror movie with sci fi elements and it was originally supposed to be a single movie that instead led to a great movie series. However, I do love how most scenes in this movie take place at night. I rarely pay attention to or appreciate what time of day most of the scenes in a movie take place, but for this movie the night time setting really made the movie a lot better and more ominous.
This movie is a classic. It’s high up on my list, and it should be high up anybody’s list as one of the best action, science fiction, horror and Arnold Schwarzenegger movies of all time.