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Terminator 2: Judgment Day (1991)

R  |   |  Action, Sci-Fi  |  3 July 1991 (USA)
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Ratings: 8.5/10 from 688,287 users   Metascore: 75/100
Reviews: 959 user | 203 critic | 22 from Metacritic.com

A cyborg, identical to the one who failed to kill Sarah Connor, must now protect her young son, John Connor, from a more advanced cyborg, made out of liquid metal.



, (as William Wisher)
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Top Rated Movies #41 | Won 4 Oscars. Another 20 wins & 22 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Leslie Hamilton Gearren ...
Ken Gibbel ...
Robert Winley ...
Peter Schrum ...
Lloyd (as Pete Schrum)


Almost 10 years have passed since the first cyborg called The Terminator tried to kill Sarah Connor and her unborn son, John Connor. John Connor, the future leader of the human resistance, is now a healthy young boy. However another Terminator is sent back through time called the T-1000, which is more advanced and more powerful than its predecessor. The Mission: to kill John Connor when he's still a child. However, Sarah and John do not have to face this threat of a Terminator alone. Another Terminator is also sent back through time. The mission: to protect John and Sarah Connor at all costs. The battle for tomorrow has begun... Written by Eric ggg

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


This time he's back...for good! See more »


Action | Sci-Fi

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong sci-fi action and violence, and for language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



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Release Date:

3 July 1991 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Terminator 2: Judgment Day  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$102,000,000 (estimated)


$204,843,350 (USA)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


| (special edition) | (Skynet Edition) | (T-1000 edition vhs) | (Extreme DVD)

Sound Mix:

(analog 70 mm prints)| (digital 35 mm and 70 mm prints)| (analog 35 mm prints)| (selected in theaters)| (original release)| (IMAX version)| (IMAX version)| (Extreme Edition)


Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?


The original script did not call for the top of the truck to be ripped off during the chase through the storm drain beside/beneath the freeway, but when they arrived on location they found that the cab wouldn't fit under the overpass so director James Cameron decided that the roof was going to have to come off. See more »


Brief obvious stunt double for Terminator can be seen when he is thrown onto the floor by the T-l000 in the clothing shop when the two are fighting, and also just before the T-1000 flings him out the glass window. See more »


[first lines]
Sarah Connor: [narrating] Three billion human lives ended on August 29th, 1997. The survivors of the nuclear fire called the war Judgment Day. They lived only to face a new nightmare: the war against the machines. The computer which controlled the machines, Skynet, sent two Terminators back through time. Their mission: to destroy the leader of the human resistance, John Connor, my son. The first Terminator was programmed to strike at me in the year 1984, before John was born. It failed. The ...
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Crazy Credits

Now read the Bantam Book See more »


Referenced in Filmography: Ginger Snaps (2004) See more »


Bad to the Bone
Performed by George Thorogood & The Destroyers (as George Thorogood and The Destroyers)
Written by George Thorogood
Published by Del Sound Music (BMI)
Courtesy of EMI Records USA
A Division of Capital Records, inc.
by Arrangement with CEMA Special Markets
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

He Said He'd Be Back...and He Certainly is!
5 November 2003 | by (UK) – See all my reviews

Who said sequels aren't any good? "Terminator 2" is the ultimate sequel, a big bad wolf ready to chomp the head off of anyone who crosses its path. It's dark, it's mean, and it's one tough movie. It's not as bleak as the first film, at least in terms of visuals, but rather has a new kind of bluish-tint that supplies a great backdrop to the ongoing battle between man and machine.

If there was ever a contemporary mainstream visionary director, it is James Cameron. Here we've got Cameron's real thoughts on the series, those repressed by a low budget in the original film. He lets loose here, filling every frame with hard-boiled action and special effects. He introduces a liquid metal Terminator that he wanted to use in the first film, but graphic processors and CGI were not advanced enough in 1984, at least not advanced enough to work on the low means he had to film the original. So his original dream is finally unveiled, and good golly, is it wonderful.

Yeah, he's "back." Arnold (like he needs any introduction?) returns as The Terminator, Series T-101, Model T-800, an indestructible cyborg sent from the future to assassinate Sarah Connor (Linda Hamilton) in the first film. Well, it's 1991. New film. New mission. He has to save the future resistance leader of mankind who will ultimately defeat the machines of the future, John Connor (Edward Furlong), Sarah's 11-year-old son. (Though his age has been switched from 11 to 13 and back to 9 over the years, with no help from the third film that takes place in 2003, yet claims he was 13 in 1991 though his age doesn't match with his age in the third. We'll just leave it at 11 in this film. Got that?)

Another model Terminator, the T-1000 (Robert Patrick), has been sent back to 1991 programmed to annihilate John Connor. Which explains Arnold's appearance. Arnold, an undoubtedly lesser opponent compared to the T-1000, has to help save the day and learn to appreciate humanity. It won't be easy. First, he has to find John Connor, who is a rebellious angst-driven pre-teen living with foster parents. Then, together they have to break into the local loony hospital and release Sarah from the clutches of Dr. Silberman (Earl Boen), who believes Sarah is delusional. (You may remember Silberman as the psychiatrist from the first film, too.) Then, they have to stop a computer chip designer (Joe Morton) from creating the first version of a SkyNet computer, modeled after a destroyed chip his employment company discovered at a large mechanical warehouse. (Which is, of course, the chip from the destroyed T-800 of the first film.)

Whew. On with the film analysis, right? Where to start? This isn't as fierce or brutal as the first film, but it's got plentiful action sequences, a large budget, great special effects (even compared to those gracing the screen nowadays), not to mention a great character study of the machine we loved to root against in the first film. Of course, this Terminator has no memory of the first film, since he wasn't in it--SkyNet creates hordes of the same version machines on a large conveyor belt and ships them off to fight in the war. Some are sent back through time. So, with that in mind, John Connor's resistance found an extra Arnold lying around in an abandoned warehouse, programmed him to keep John Connor out of harm, and sent him through the time portal.

Sarah doesn't trust him. In a deleted scene available on the Ultimate and "Xtreme" edition DVDs, Sarah says, "You don't know what it's like to try and kill one of these things!" It's an important scene that should have been left in the final cut. In it, Sarah is about to destroy the machine's central processing chip located inside his head, when John stops her. It's important because it focuses on the fact that Sarah still doesn't trust him, and came close to destroying him purely out of prejudice, without giving him a chance. As much as I don't like it when people go on about hidden meanings in films that obviously are not meant to have hidden meanings and are purely little flubs made by directors unrightfully analyzed for deeper meaning(s), "T2" clearly has an underlying message: One, don't judge a book by its cover. Read it first. Two, if an emotionless killing machine can learn to appreciate life, why can't everyone? And three, the most important fact of all: Never mess with a muscular man who walks into a bar completely naked and requests your clothes and means of transportation.

I suppose the question on most interested viewers' minds is this: Is "T2: Judgment Day" better than its predecessor? Well, in some respects, yes. In others, no. It lacks the fierce brutality and darkness of the first film, but makes up for it with spectacular visual effects and action sequences. It lacks the horrific central focus of the first film (futuristic, indestructible cyborgs with no feelings being able to unemotionally kill), but it makes up for this with a new focus of humanity, coming to accept your future, and how it would look if two colossal killing machines entered into an arena together.

In some ways, I like the first better. But then I think about the second film and I have a hard time choosing. I suppose if I had to choose I'd choose the first film. And let me just state for the record that I'm glad I don't have to choose.

5/5 stars.

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