The Terminator Saga

The best sc-fi saga ever.
By dg
April 26, 2007

The Terminator films or the first two are my most fav films I grew up on. It has a massive fan base and not surprising because every one who's seen them will tell you how amazing they are, especially the first one for its originality and brilliant story. What some people forget is that its a B-movie but they made it look much more grander in scale, like a blockbuster you would watch today, thanks to Cameron's genius. The first film was important for its time, showing how great action can be done in an epic scale. The Matrix films must of been influenced allot from the Terminator films, which you can tell but the Terminator for me is allot better. I'm not gonna go into the whole time paradox and all that because I don't quite understand it myself,so its just from what I know.

James Cameron got the idea from a dream in Europe. His vision was of a metal endoskeleton emerging from flames and most of the script was written backwards from there. The endoskeleton would have to be futuristic, and Cameron couldn't afford to set the film in the future. The solution was to bring the future to the present, hence the 'time travel' aspect of the script was written in.

Everyone knows the story. In the year 2029, a computer called Skynet is fighting against a human resistance, after having nearly destroyed the rest of humanity in 1997. Skynet has found a way to send some of it's warriors, called Terminators, back in time. This is the story of the Terminator sent to kill the resistance leader's mother in 1984, before she gives birth. The resistance sends a warrior named Kyle Reese back to 1984 to protect the young woman. The question is, can Sarah Connor survive long enough to have her child so that history remains on track?

The first film was originally supposed to have Lance Henrickson playing The Terminator, so the concept was to have a machine fit in with any crowd but then changed to a big body builder, Arnold Schwarzenegger. He made the Terminator seem more threatening and believe it or not O.J. Simpson was at one time going to play The Terminator but I wont go into that. I think it would have been interesting to see Lance as the Terminator but it would probably would seem a more normal thriller, rather than a larger action packed one when Arnold played the Terminator. Arnold was original going to play Kyle Reese but Cameron knew his acting wasn't great at the time and went with my favourite actor Michael Biehn who was tremendous in the film. Michael Biehn has had a great working relationship with Cameron's other films. There was John Connors mother Sarah Conner played brilliantly by Linda Hamilton and the classic movie began.

I loved the opening to The Terminator which was very atmospheric and eerie with a flying HK going over the top seeking out resistance fighters. You then see a solider running across the rubble with a another HK firing down, which looked awesome. I always wondered if the solider running was Michael Biehn just helping out with that scene. You then see the story in writing appear which sounded cool, especially where it says" the final battle would not be fought in future but the present day". The titles then kick in with futuristic letters over lapping and of course the amazing theme by Brad Friedel, who did a brilliant score for the whole movie.

Both solders arrive in great fashion with electricity surrounding the area. The Terminator arrives first crouching down. You then get to see Arnold in his early days standing up, absolutely huge looking around with the iconic Terminator stare. He slowly walks towards the edge of a road or building looking across the vast cityscape of Las Angeles. Then Kyle Reese arrives in a dirty alley way. Originally there were two soldiers sent back but one died from the time travel and tells Reese to carry on a save Sarah Conner. It was written out because Cameron thought it wasn't necessary. I'm sure if you looked on the internet you would find the info, it was in an early draft he'd written. Kyle Reese steals his clothes while the Terminators demands them from some punks and rips some guys heart out. You get to see a small cameo from Bill Paxton too.

Stan Winston did a super job on this film with the special effects, which he did the animatronics. Its great for the time it was made but dated now, especially the stop motion but still worked brilliantly for the movie. Its great when Arnie gets damaged on his arm and eye which I really enjoyed watching, as he opens his arm up and tries to fix himself, moving the metal strings up and down. What was also great was that you got to see how the Terminator saw things which looked great tracking everything which was in his sight, with an eerie echo sound in the background.

The future war scenes were awesome and although you never get see loads in the film, Cameron gave you a good idea of what it was like. You see them through Reese's dreams, which were gritty and dark with rubble everywhere. I loved how the resistance soldiers looked with there armour and weapons, especially the grenade pipe bombs they carried to blow up the HKs and Plasma rifle guns. There's a great seen where he goes back underground and you see Franco Columbo make an appearance as an infiltrator Terminator, looking menacing and did a great job.

As stated in the making of the Terminator,"the films are a wonderful life with guns". Kyle Reese steals a shot gun from a police car and saws the end off. But the Terminator with all its knowledge goes to a gun shop where he stacks up for supplies. He asks for Plasma Rifle 40 watt range, which I'm sure every body remembers not realizing they haven't even been made them yet. He gets a really cool gun with laser sighting and then blows the shop owner away, who's been in allot of 80's films.

There were plenty of memorable scenes in the movie where the Terminator nearly kills Sarah Conner in the disco and Reese saves her at the last second. You finally get to find out what's going on, as Michael Biehn explains brilliantly in an intense car chase. There's a few good things that happen at the Police Station, where Reese gets interrogated and he explains to the asshole Dr. Peter Silberman, who he is and what his mission is to do. He explains that John Connor sent him back through time and blew the whole place and he also mentions that there defence grid was smashed and that the resistance fighters had won. This makes you imagine how it would have played out and wonder what the time displacement machine looked like but probably because of money and effects it was unable to do, which was really disappointing. You also get to see Lance Henrickson through the film playing a cop and Lieutenant Ed Traxler played by Paul Winfield, who seems to believe Reese which is really interesting.

The Police Station shoot-out was one of the most memorable scene, where he's says his most iconic line "Ill be back" unawhere that he was coming back to kick ass. Arnie blasts his way through killing any one standing in his way.

The love scene in the film was important because although it had allot of action it, it was still a love story just based around it and showed that Reese would become the father of John Conner.The Terminator tracks them down for the last time in the final chase, where he gets smacked down by a big truck but keeps on coming which was scary. The most memorable bit is when the truck gets blown up and the Endo Skelton appears out of the carnage, just when you think its all over and you wonder if there ever gonna kill the son of a bitch. Although the Terminator is now taking over by Stop Motion, Arnold is no longer seen in the film any more, which weird because he's the star of the film.

The factory part was great as they just about get away from the Terminator. He smashed through the door and tracks them down, as Reese must fight him off one last time. Reese dies from his explosion he put on the terminator and it explodes and bits of metal fly everywhere. Its a sad scene when you see Reese is dead and you wonder how Sarah will cope with out him. Then the Terminator comes after her with no legs. Its scary as hell, as she goes under the crusher and finally destroys him for good. The last scene you see Sarah Conner pregnant and trying to makes sense of everything and her fate. You see her picture taken from what Reese describes to her.This ends the film brilliantly as you see her driving off into the distance.

The first film was the brilliant B-movie and this was the big blockbuster sequel that blew everybody away, especially with its advanced special effects. The story was no better than the first but the action scenes and stunts were fornominal.
Nearly 10 years have passed since Sarah Connor was targeted for termination by a cyborg from the future. Now her son, John, the future leader of the resistance, is the target for a newer, more deadly terminator. Once again, the resistance has managed to send a protector back to attempt to save John and his mother Sarah.

I think the teaser trailer for the film was brilliant, seeing the Endo Skeleton on a control line and then getting tissue in the big machine. You then see smoke and Arnie clenching his fist with red eyes which looked exciting. There was a scene which Cameron could not shoot, which was after Kyle Reese goes back in time. John Conner and the fighters find a storage full of T-800's but it was written out again because it was too expensive but I wish it could have been done in the directors cut because I would have loved to have seen that scene.

Some of the cast were back from the first film, the ones that survived anyway. It was great to see Michael Biehn do a cameo in the deleted scenes, which you can watch on the special edition. Cameron cut it out in the end with other scenes because it slows the film down too much which he's right and not to mention Sarah's character had changed to a badass . It didn't seem right that she would go back to depending on Reese again. Edward Furlong played the young John Conner and for me I think he did an excellent job. Robert Patrick played the deadly T-1000 and seemed very threatening, unlike the TX in T3. There is also Miles Dyson, the man responsible for designing Syknet from the arm and chip from the original T-800 in T1, which was really cool to see. Linda Hamilton had trained herself to be the strong mother and very toned and very unattractive, compared to how she looked in the first film but did a great job.


I remember watching the opening for the movie for the first time, as a young kid and couldn't believe they made another one but most of all watching the battle scene just blew me away. It gave a much better idea of what the battle was like in the future, in a much more grander style. It wasn't as dark as the first film and much more clearer to watch. The great thing is that you finally get to see John Conner himself, played by Michael Edwards which looked great as the leader with a cool scar on his face.

Arnie arrives the same way he did in the first film, naked and huge still and you get to see a more better look at the electricity and circle that sourrounds him, which looked pretty cool. He then grabs his leather at the biker bar, where he surprises them with his muscles and demands some clothes off an old biker. He stabs a cigar in him thinking it would hurt. He kicks every one too pieces and gets his clothes and bike, not to mention his cool shades. The T-1000 kills his victim and grabs his clothes off a cop. Then the hunt for John Connors begins.

The first encounter of the terminators is brilliant, as the Terminator tries to protect John from the T-1000 fire and the fight between the terminators begins.They don't really know how to handle one another, looking at each other a bit confused, so they just start chucking each other all over the place.

Again T2 like T1 has many memorable scenes. The first big stunt was the Bike chase when the big truck lands off the bridge into the alleyway. Edward Furlong has to ride for his life, with the T-1000 coming right after him and T-800 close behind. Then the big jump as he zooms off the edge onto the floor, with sparks flying everywhere which just blew you away when you first see it. The T-1000 although not as big as the T-800 is still as threatening, especially when he stabs the guy through the throat. The next one is the big mini gun scene, as Arnie takes care of the cops and makes a promise he wont kill any one to John "Trust me" he says. Its also great when the T-800 rips off the flesh on his arm to prove Dyson, that its very important that they destroy the Chip and arm at Cyberdyme systems. There are many more but I'm sure you already know them.

Terminator 2 revolutionized the special effects industry, with ground-breaking computer graphics and visual images, particularly in the T-1000s scenes. The main scene was when the T-1000 melts back together in the steal mill which is totally awesome to see.

The ending was really epic when the Terminator rolls the a huge Tanker over and then jumping off crashing into the steel works. Arnie comes up with another great line"Hasta la vista, baby " and blows away the T-1000, who's freezed and scatters into million pieces. This is when the amazing special effects comes in and he moulds back. The T-1000 and T-800 fight was great, seeing the Two Terminators fight it out which. I love the bit when Arnie smacks him in the head and it goes straight through getting stuck. Eventually John and Sahra are helpless and its up to Arnie to save the day, by blasting the T-1000 for good and making him fall into the lava. Its really weird as he tries to imitate everyone to survive somehow. .He earns the trust of Sahra Conner by the end and shakes her hand. It was really sad seeing the Terminator slowly going into the molten lava, terminating himself so there will be no evidence and help Skynet from existing again. There were so many great action scenes in the sequel and the movie is considered one of the greatest ever made. Still to this day they have never beaten this classic.

This is the story of the Terminator sent to kill the resistance leader in 1996. The resistance sends a reprogrammed Terminator back to 1996 to protect the young man, and the two end of travelling to the year 2029. The question is, can the future resistance leader and the Terminator defeat another new Terminator while destroying Skynet in the future

Now to me the I consider this the third film or atleast a short Terminator film T2-3D . Although it was only a theme park ride, it looked better than T3 which was released years later. Although I've never been to the attraction in Florida itself, I've actually seen the footage on Youtube and it looks amazing. One of the things I found so great about it was that you finally get to see Skynet the unseen super computer, which you never even see in the first two films and it looked amazing with its big artillery guns protecting it.

If you are a Terminator fan your remember T3 coming out, thinking what are they gonna do with this one and they just completely copied T2 but it didn't even compare to it. It felt like a TV series like Stargate SG1, just tacky with no epic scale to it and only one main cast returning, Arnold a 56 year old who they relied on to carry the whole film. For me I felt the story was too complicated and it was just the same thing with a Terminator coming back to kill John Connor again and another to protect. It was mainly to do with Cameron's departure, which I think was a real shame. Me and probably along with all the other Terminator fans wanted to see the future war film and sending Reese back to 1984. Which would have ended it brilliantly and do a full circle, seeing John Connor destroy Skynet once and for all. Lets hope they do justice in T4 if it ever gets made and make the story what every body wants to see.

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