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The Terminator (1984)

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A seemingly indestructible android is sent from 2029 to 1984 to assassinate a waitress, whose unborn son will lead humanity in a war against the machines, while a soldier from that war is sent to protect her at all costs.

Director:

James Cameron
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Arnold Schwarzenegger ... Terminator
Michael Biehn ... Kyle Reese
Linda Hamilton ... Sarah Connor
Paul Winfield ... Lieutenant Ed Traxler
Lance Henriksen ... Detective Hal Vukovich
Rick Rossovich ... Matt Buchanan
Bess Motta ... Ginger Ventura
Earl Boen ... Dr. Peter Silberman
Dick Miller ... Pawn Shop Clerk
Shawn Schepps ... Nancy
Bruce M. Kerner Bruce M. Kerner ... Desk Sergeant
Franco Columbu ... Future Terminator
Bill Paxton ... Punk Leader
Brad Rearden ... Punk
Brian Thompson ... Punk
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Storyline

A cyborg is sent from the future on a deadly mission. He has to kill Sarah Connor, a young woman whose life will have a great significance in years to come. Sarah has only one protector - Kyle Reese - also sent from the future. The Terminator uses his exceptional intelligence and strength to find Sarah, but is there any way to stop the seemingly indestructible cyborg ? Written by Colin Tinto <cst@imdb.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

I'll be back! See more »

Genres:

Action | Sci-Fi

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Facebook

Country:

UK | USA

Language:

English | Spanish

Release Date:

26 October 1984 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Terminator See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$6,400,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$4,020,663, 28 October 1984, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$38,400,000

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$40,000,000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (original release)| Dolby (DVD Re-Release)| DTS (DTS HD Master Audio)

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Contrary to popular belief, Lance Henriksen was never going to be the Terminator. However, James Cameron based some of his early sketches of the Terminator on Henriksen's likeness. Henriksen also helped Cameron pitching the film's idea to the producers in a rather unique way: He prepared himself for the meeting by dressing up in some leathers, adding a cut on his head and putting gold foil on his teeth. Fifteen minutes before the meeting, he kicked the door to the office in. He then just silently sat there while staring at the producers, making them gradually uncomfortable. When Cameron arrived, Henriksen left the room. He later overheard that one of the producers even said "I don't care who you use for the Terminator, not him." See more »

Goofs

(at around 1h 1 min) Cutting the power in the electrical box would not cause the florescent lights to come apart and explode; they would just go dark. The Terminator doesn't cut the power - he actually surges the lights with the wire from the high-voltage box. A high voltage surge like that could definitely cause fluorescent lights to explode, if they got hot enough. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
[the garbage truck's engine stops]
Truck Driver: What the hell? Goddamn son of a bitch...
See more »

Crazy Credits

The opening credits run while large outlines of the two halves of THE TERMINATOR cross each other. After the last directorial credit is shown, the title THE TERMINATOR zooms backward, is filled by metallic blue, and reveals itself. See more »

Alternate Versions

Some TV versions include had a scene now missing from the release available on VHS, set inside the police station. Sarah Connor emerges from under Lt. Traxler's desk, revealing herself to Reese. In the next room they encounter Lt. Traxler, who is shot and bleeding on the floor. He hands Reese his Police Special revolver and tells him that he has to keep Sarah safe, (showing that he believes Reese). See more »

Connections

Referenced in Armageddon (1998) See more »

Soundtracks

Intimacy
Performed by Linn Van Hek
Written by Linn Van Hek, Joe Dolce
Published by Dolceamore Music
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Nice night for a walk.
15 July 1999 | by baumerSee all my reviews

Is there a better person to play a cyborg than Arnold? For this movie he was a massively built oak tree of a man. His strange accent makes for a perfect callous robotic sounding killing machine. It's almost like his voice is a computer read out ( which I guess it is in one sense ). Terminator is one of those films that started something huge. People didn't realize it at the time, but the careers of Arnold, Cameron and perhaps even guys like Micahel Biehn, Lance Henriksen and even Bill Paxton were substantially started because of this film. And Cameron must have liked working with them so much that he gave all of them substantial roles in his next film ( Aliens ).

As we all know what the story is, I'll just tell you a bit about what is so fascinating about it. First I have to mention Michael Biehn. He has the real starring role. He is the character that has to explain everything to the audience. He has to explain this complicated story so that we know what is happening and why. It is not an easy job to do something like that and still come off looking all right. But Biehn is simply awesome in this film. A microcosm of his performance can be seen when Sara bites him. Biehn ( Kyle Reese ) replies " Terminator's don't feel pain. I do. Don't do that again. " That is such a great line delivered with the perfect expression, the perfect tone and the perfect timing. Biehn is perfect for the role.

This is also the first film that I saw as a youngster that ever warned me of the dangers of nuclear war and of the rapid advancements of machinery. Perhaps I was too young and naive to fully understand all that James Cameron was trying to say, but now that I am older, I can honestly say that the two Terminators are perfect anti nuke films. And they are so passionate with what they have to say. I like it when a film has something to say. I enjoy being entertained in the process but if you can manage both then you have a masterpiece. This is a masterpiece.

Finally. there are two other reasons to enjoy this film. One, this is the first film where "I'll be back" was spoken. Now it is part of Arnolds vernacular. Secondly, Bill Paxton is in it. And he adds spark to any film that he's in. Especially here, as the idiot punk leader that really gets the hell beat out of him, he has some great lines.

A great film.


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