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9/10
The ultimate blend of Orwell and action
PhilipJames198025 February 2005
Warning: Spoilers
Even in this post-Matrix era, this movie is still the ultimate blend of Orwell and action. If the definition of a classic is a movie that's often imitated but never equaled, then The Terminator is definitely a classic, because the increasing redundancy of its sequels and imitations merely demonstrates how good the original is.

I wasn't fortunate enough to see this movie in the year of its release, the year predicted by Orwell's classic novel as a time when technology would be used to enslave people, but I did see it in about 1992, when the blockbuster success of the first sequel made me curious to watch the first film. At that time I preferred the second Terminator movie for being technically superior, but after all these years I now prefer the first film's raw intensity and kinetic energy.

The Terminator was of course the breakthrough movie for James Cameron, and even after Aliens and Titanic it's still arguably his best-directed film. I challenge anybody to watch this movie and point out one single shot that needs improvement, because the direction of this movie is so fluid and precise that I can't think of one moment in the whole 100-minute running time that I would want to change.

Cameron was and of course still is a notorious perfectionist who's very difficult to work with, but his perfectionism really paid off with this movie because it can be watched again and again without losing its entertainment value. He's a master of the small touch, as when the cop at the desk is filling out his paperwork with a small pencil and pauses in mid-sentence to look up and see the headlights coming towards him through the doors.

Cameron also co-wrote the story, so this movie meant even more to him personally than merely a directing triumph. Supposedly he drew his inspiration from a nightmare in which he was being chased by a humanoid with one glowing red eye, and indeed the whole film has the urgent, oppressive atmosphere and calm logic characteristic of a nightmare. But of course he was probably also remembering subconsciously a couple episodes of The Outer Limits that he saw as a kid, which explains why he had to acknowledge the writer Ellison in the credits.

Besides Cameron, this movie really belongs to the three lead actors. Arnold of course gives the performance of his career in this movie, but then so do Linda and Michael. Arnold's physical presence and harsh accent have never been put to better use in a movie, while Linda never had another role that required her to run through such a full range of emotions--sweetness and vulnerability, toughness and despair, etc.

Michael has always been a B actor, but since The Terminator is essentially a B movie he fits in perfectly. His performance proves that an action hero is much more compelling when he's vulnerable not only to physical pain but emotional difficulties, to which his big, haunted eyes are put to good use. Watch him in this movie, as a man thrown out of his time but with a mission, and you'll see a perfect match of actor and character.

In a typical action film, the amount of violence and bloodshed in The Terminator would be excessive, but in a movie about an unstoppable killing machine the envelope can be pushed. In one of the more memorable set-pieces, the Terminator takes on an entire police station full of thirty cops, and although I didn't exactly count them the viewer gets the sense of watching every single cop being gunned down.

Ordinarily I wouldn't describe such a scene of slaughter as "cool," and yet there is some-thing undeniably cool about Arnold, with his sunglasses and leather jacket, going through the station with a shotgun and assault rifle and taking on everybody. Arnold's charisma helps the audience stomach the cold-blooded determination of the Terminator, but also the character's single-mindedness invites admiration: even as we're appalled by all the killing, we have to admit he does it rather well.

This movie has more than enough gunfire, explosions and stunt-work (including some especially good stunt driving) to work purely as an action picture, but it's the film's anti-technology paranoia that makes it more than just an exciting ride. Notice, for example, the subtle role that Sarah's answering machine plays in the story: the cops can't get into touch with her because of it, while the message she leaves on it brings the Terminator right to her.

In one memorable shot, the tracks of a construction crane become those of a killing machine in the future, crushing an endless row of skulls, which you can interpret any number of ways (is it a crack against urban renewal?). Also note that the criminal psychologist is enslaved by his beeper, and that even in the post-apocalyptic future in which machines have destroyed the world children still huddle around a television set in a desperate effort to be entertained.

Some viewers may be turned off by this movie's preaching, but one quality that distinguishes The Terminator from its countless imitations is the strength of its convictions. Too many science-fiction/action movies fail under the weight of their own camp, but The Terminator is an exception because it actually has the nerve to take itself seriously. The bickering between seasoned cops Paul and Lance provides some levity, but at no point does the film make fun of itself.

The only reason I'm not giving this movie a perfect 10 is because it is, after all, The Terminator, and not Casablanca. If people still remember it in forty years, then I'll give it a 10.
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10/10
Schwarzenegger's my personal favorite best action classic masterpiece of all time
ivo-cobra85 January 2018
The Terminator (1984) is a masterpiece, the best sci-fi action classics horror movie that started all the Terminator movies. This is Schwarzenegger's best movie and my personal favorite action film. I love this film to death it is my childhood film I grew up with it. Arnold Schwarzenegger was The Terminator T-800 Model 101 indestructible killing machine cyborg. This movie is brilliant, it has brilliant story, brilliant plot, excellent additional cast, brilliant director and writers, good special effects, it is mixed with sci-fi, action and horror. This movie deals with the war that was set in the future but the battle will be fought in the present. It deals with paradox travel trough time.

"It can't be bargained with. It can't be reasoned with. It doesn't feel pity, or remorse, or fear. And it absolutely will not stop... ever, until you are dead! "

This is the perfect action film of all time and still even today over 30 years it is a cult classic. The plot and the script provides excellent dialogues. Why it is brilliant? Imagine someone did something in the future and didn't know about it and becomes a primal target for extermination from a killer cyborg from the future now in the present. That is brilliant and excellent idea and story.

Two naked men appear in different locations in los Angeles trough flash blue light and electricity they were both set in time from the year 2029 to the present year 1984. One is a human the other is an indestructible cyborg reprogramed to find and kill Sarah Connor (Linda Hamilton) the woman whose unborn son will become humanity's only hope in the future war against the machines. The other men is a human being a soldier from the future who has to find Sarah Connor and protect her at all cost. That's the basically plot for this film.

James Cameron writes and directs this film with his than wife Gale Anne Hurd who also produced this film and they both does that brilliantly. The script with the story provides a perfect action entertainment trough whole film.

Brad Fiedel does a wonderful music theme for The Terminator character and action sequences, car chases and does a drama in which Sarah and Kyle have sex together in the motel room. That's how John was later in the sequel born. Great music score for the film. I love the soundtracks from this film: Photoplay and Burnin' in the Third Degree by Tryanglz.

Arnold Schwarzenegger was at the top of his career. This movie bring his career at top of the action stars. Arnold is excellent and he performs excellent and acts brilliant as The Terminator. At one time his agent pursued Schwarzenegger to play the action hero, but Schwarzenegger wasn't interested to be an action hero he was interested to be The Terminator and he played brilliantly well and believable enough.

Before Sarah Connor was a tough bad-ass gun guerilla squad in the sequels, here she was a scared victim. A beautiful young woman who was a waitress at the diner and was just a human being leaving a teenage normal life in Los Angeles. Linda Hamilton is the only Sarah Connor no else can replace her. She is beautiful and smart and it is my favorite Linda Hamilton movie. She acts very realistic, brilliant and perfectly as the scared victim. Linda Hamilton is the best of the film.

Michael Biehn is the only Sgt. Kyle Reese no one else is or can replace him. He is excellent and brilliant I still prefer Corporal Dwayne Hicks but Kyle Reese is my favorite character from Michael Biehn he is a perfect action hero. I love Kyle Reese because he doesn't kill any human being.

Lance Henriksen from Aliens and Hard Target is in here and he plays Detective Hal Vukovich and he is very good and realistic as the detective.

Paul Winfield is Lieutenant Ed Traxler first he doesn't believe Kyle Reese story but later he witness it him self. I wish there wouldn't be deleted scene in which Kyle and Sarah finds Traxler dying and he gives Kyle a gun.

This movie has ton's of action: You see a lot of automatic weapons, shotguns and handguns used in this film and they are used well. You have a car chase between The Terminator and Kyle Reese with Sarah and both men are shooting at each other. Terminator has a stolen Police car and Kyle fires his shotgun and hits twice the Terminator once in the eye. The Terminator than crashes with the car in the wall. In the next scene you see Terminator's eye bloody. You have a great car chase by the end of the film Terminator with truck tries to kill Sarah but Kyle put's a pipe bomb in the truck and you see a huge explosion the truck explodes great special effect. Terminator shoot's with an IMI Uzi in Tech Noir night club. Killing bunch of people in which Kyle stops him with a shotgun. Terminator crash with the car in the police station and kills almost 19 cops.

When we see The Terminator been all burned out without flesh with only been endoskeleton covered with steel with his red eyes glowing that is scary when he chases Sarah is scary when I was 6 years old I screamed when I saw that skeleton cyborg attacking Kyle and Sarah.

The Terminator is a 1984 American science-fiction action film directed by James Cameron.

10/10 Bad-Ass Seal Of Approval The Terminator is a masterpiece a science fiction action horror film, a film I love to death and it is my personal favorite Schwarzenegger film. This is Schwarzenegger's best film with Predator and Terminator 2: Judgment Day I highly recommend those three films.
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10/10
This is the movie that made a big break through for sci-fi movies!!!!
Smells_Like_Cheese4 August 2002
The Terminator is one of those films that no matter if you've seen it or not, you've heard of it, heck you know at least one or two lines without seeing it! This is the movie that blasted then new comer's Arnold Schwartzeneggerr's career, made James Cameron a name in Hollywood, and gave new meaning to a possible dark future that gave us nightmares. I remember the first time I saw this movie, I was just 8 years old and my dad of course walks in saying to cover my eyes at every "bad" scene with violence or nudity, needless to say about 70% of the movie he covered my eyes. Finally I got to see it with my mom and I was in love, this wasn't just an action movie, though it is one of the best, it had a story. To think this was all based upon just a quick nightmare that James Cameron had, he didn't have much money, but he had a good script, a great crew on his side to make one of cinema's greatest movies of all time.

Two men appear in Los Angeles in separate locations, manifesting in sudden, blinding flash-storms of electricity. One is heavily muscular; the other man, slim and wiry. The mysterious muscular man obtains weapons and begins hunting down all women named "Sarah Connor", using a phone book to track his targets. He successfully kills the first two of the three listed women. When he attempts to kill the last Sarah Connor, he is stopped by the other man, Kyle Reese who has been sent back in time to protect her. While hiding in a parking garage, Reese explains that the man hunting Sarah is actually a cyborg assassin called a "Terminator", built by Skynet, an artificial intelligence network created by Cyberdyne Systems. In the near future, Reese explains, Skynet gained self-awareness, initiated a global takeover of military hardware, and launched a nuclear war against humanity. Skynet ordered that a scant number of humans were to be kept alive in order to be used as slave labor. John Connor, Sarah's son, rallied the few remaining humans and led a resistance movement against the machines. After a grinding campaign, the human resistance was on the verge of victory; in a last-ditch effort, Skynet sent the Terminator back in time to kill Sarah before John was born, preventing the resistance from ever being founded and allowing the machines to win by default. Reese volunteered to follow the Terminator back in time to protect Sarah; after his use of the time transportation equipment, it was to be destroyed by the resistance in order to prevent further Terminators from going back in time. The Terminator feels no pain, has no emotions, and will stop at nothing to accomplish its mission.

The Terminator is personally one of my favorite movies of all time, I think because this movie really is something special. Yeah, the effects are very 80's, but for the time and even to this day, I think the special effects are much better than the CGI crud we get in today's cinema. This has everything: action, romance, horror, sci-fi, and even some dark humor. The reason why Arnold's "I'll be back" is so famous is not just because of his accent, but because you knew that something bad was coming. Kyle Reese's "Come with me if you want to live" is classic as well. If you haven't seen The Terminator, I highly recommend this movie, it's an incredible one that is sure to deliver entertainment to the fullest. This is one of the greatest movies of all time and I'm sure that you will not be disappointed, if you are, get a CAT scan.

10/10
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10/10
The best of the best in its genre...
MovieAddict20165 June 2003
Warning: Spoilers
Rarely has a film so frightened an audience as "The Terminator." After its release in 1984, the extremely low-budget sci-fi actioner broke box office records, and gave audiences something more to fear. Through the years, there have been stories of nature's beasts, of creatures from another world, and so on and so forth. "Jaws" was terrifying because it seemed so possible. And if "Jaws" is terrifying, "The Terminator" is horrific. The realization of this hit-man machine dawned on everyone watching the film. In a time of exceeding technology, how long will it be before man is overtaken by the very things he created? And that is what is particularly scary about a film like "The Terminator."

In "The Terminator," Arnold plays a cyborg, Cyberdyne system model 101, a T800, whatever that means. He has been sent back in time to assassinate the soon-to-be-mother of the future world leader, John Connor (who battles the machines in the future and leads an uprising). If Connor is killed, then there will be no one to oppose the machines of the future, and they will triumph. This would be pretty bad. So the future John Connor has sent a protector back in time, to help save his mother. Kyle Reese (Michael Biehn) tells Sarah Connor (Linda Hamilton) about the machine that is trying to kill her. "It can't be bargained with, it can't feel pain or mercy, and it will stop at absolutely nothing until you are dead!" Talk about a bad day.

The Terminator hunts them down time after time, including the famous police station scene, where Arnie says, "I'll be back," and returns moments later, crashing through the wall in a car. He then takes on a whole squad of cops, but don't worry, Sarah and Reese escape slightly unscathed.

There are countless classic scenes in "The Terminator." You will see them spoofed your entire life. From the image of the Terminator, to the lines they speak, to the scenes they act out. Everything is spoofed. And the film is worthy of its fame.

On the special edition "T2" DVD (the second one), there is an on-set documentary for the making of the "Terminator 2" 3-D ride at Universal Studios. As the camera moves around, it shows Cameron detailing what he wants in this scene. Some guy suggests something else, and Cameron gets a tone. "No, no, that won't work. You do it like this - we come off here, he walks around..." etc. The point is, he's a perfectionist, and a demanding director. Some directors are a bit too easy, and don't really care where their films are going. But James Cameron seems to have a clear vision of what he wants, and he goes around making sure it gets done exactly the way he wants it to be done. And it shows in his work. It's hard to find any mistakes in a James Cameron film. And it's even harder to find plot holes.

Some people say "Terminator 2 - Judgment Day" is better than the original. It's hard to choose, because the two films are very different. I view "The Terminator" as more of a deep, intellectually-consuming, dark thriller. I view "Judgment Day" as an action film, with a more or less recycled plot. (The plot is still good, but it's still the same, too.) It's hard to choose a favorite because they are so different. On "T2" the budget is ten times larger, probably even more than that. But if you want a horror/thriller, "The Terminator" is better for you. If you want special-effects and a really fun time, see "T2." They're both excellent films.

"The Terminator" is a great movie. It is one of my favorites; it is terrifying, horrifying, and 100 % entertaining. And unlike a lot of other cheap actioners out there, "The Terminator" has some thought put into its plot, and that is what separates it from the rest of its kind.
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Arnie is cool as the bad guy, in this classic 80's action film!
Old Joe10 February 2002
It was funny to read that this film nearly avoided coming to our screens. With many number of studios rejecting the script and story, Terminator was nearly terminated before getting of the ground. However, one company, ORION pictures, the last resort for this movie, loved the premise of a robot running around as a man, trying to kill the mother of the savior of planet earth. Thank goodness they saw that it was a good script, because it become one of the great films of the 1980's.

In 2029, giant super computers dominate the planet, hell bent on exterminating the human race! And to destroy man's future by changing the past they send an indestructible cyborg – a terminator – back in time to kill Sarah Connor, the woman who's unborn son will become mankind's only hope. Can Sarah protect herself from this unstoppable menace to save the life of her unborn child? Or will the human race be extinguished by one mean hunk of mutant metal?

Well this film is a real blast. The cast is extraordinary. This is probably Arnold Schwarzenegger's most popular role. I cannot see why it isn't. He was great as the Cyborg that was walking around, as a killing machine. His facial expressions are sketched in my memory for life. I love the scene where see a close of his face in the police car, it was brilliant. Schwarzenegger, originally a body builder, he has had a wonderful career in the movie industry. His other great films include Predator, End Of Days, Total Recall, Eraser and was impressive in his role as Mr. Freeze in Batman and Robin. His career was on hold for sometime a while back, due to injury, but he is back and I hope we get to see more of his acting talents.

Then you have the others in the cast. The other stand out in this film for me is Linda Hamilton. She was suited perfectly to the role of the feeble Sarah Connor, who is going to be the mother of the child who is going to save the world. Hamilton has had a mixed career, with her filmography including the enjoyable Dante's Peak. The good guy in Terminator was Michael Biehn, who played out the role of Sarah Connor's protector, Reese Kyle. He was very good in his role. His other movies include Aliens, The Rock, Crash and an uncredited role in the great musical, Grease.

The director of Terminator, namely James Cameron, did a great job with this film. Considering he thought up the idea from a sick bed, had it rejected that many times, it is a great credit to him. Most directors would have given up on it, but he stuck with it till he got to our screens. Thank goodness he did. The story of the Terminator is an interesting one. It has a very biblical feel to it. One man sent to help save the world, with the initials J.C., fascinated me immensely. Cameron and Co writer Gale Anne Hurd did a fantastic script for this film.

There are some unbelievable scenes in this movie. None more so then the vision we see of the metal Cyborg walking from the truck fire. The vision we see from this scene is one of the main reasons why we have the Terminator. James Cameron explained that he wanted a scene in a movie that has a machine walking from a fire in menacing fashion. He got this spot on, if you ask me. Then there are some other great scenes such as the tense stand offs that the evil cyborg has with all the humans he comes into contact with, including the first confrontation with Sarah, in addition to the meeting he has with Reese. I also enjoyed the scene where he goes through the police station. Of course this scene has one of Hollywood's most famous lines in it, that of Arnie's 'I'll be back', a classic. The final confrontation between Sarah and the Cyborg is another tension filled scene of this great movie.

So, what more can I say about this movie? It is simply brilliant. I have asked many people their opinion on this film. One such response about it was, that is too 'eightish', and that comment is fair enough. If you have the chance, grab a copy of Terminator on DVD, as it is a great 2 disc set. I must admit the first time I saw it, I did not appreciate Terminator like I do now. Perhaps I found it a tad violent, but that is to be expected of a film that is called Terminator. This movie was a great success and deserved to be with all the great work that was put into it. However more was to come, a film that was to become one of the greatest sequels in movie history. Arnie was to deliver on his promise of 'I'll be back'!

Rating: 4.5 stars or 9/10
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10/10
Nice night for a walk.
baumer15 July 1999
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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10/10
The Terminator has heart. Cameron might be well advised,less is more.
axlrhodes28 January 2011
Many people look back at the films of James Cameron and suggest that the smaller, the budget, the tighter the limitations, the better the end product. Films like Avatar, Titanic and True Lies had huge budgets and drew in even bigger box office but many still yearn for the Cameron that gave us The Terminator and Aliens which were huge movies but packed a far bigger punch artistically. My feelings all these years on are that Cameron has earned the right to make those huge movies but i have to admit to preferring his earlier body of work. The Terminator is a nightmarish, time travelling science fiction film told at a breakneck pace and delivered with confidence and style. The film has a very gritty, underground look to it and does a great job of telling its story amid the frenetic action. There is also a huge slice of horror and suspense thrown in, an impression that has diminished in the years since it's release due to inferior sequels. Viewed as a standalone piece however, The Terminator is fine piece of work from a director with a very clear vision.Everyone knows that The Terminator is the film that gave us Arnold Schwarzenegger but when i look back at the film, it has heart and its the Michael Biehn character, Kyle Reese, that provides it Artistically speaking,Cameron might be well advised that less is more.
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9/10
One of the most breathtaking modern action science fiction films...
Nazi_Fighter_David27 July 2003
Warning: Spoilers
In one of the most intelligent and unhesitating science fiction films of the 1950s, Robert Wise equipped "The Day the Earth Stood Still" with technical marvels, chief among them the huge robot Gort—the prototype, Michael Rennie suggests, for a global police force... Similar mechanical giants have been lumbering out of space-ships ever since...

In "Devil Girl from Mars," the giant refrigerator robot Chai hunts for virile Scotsmen and find John Laurie, while in 'Target Earth,' the Venusian robots imitate Gort in projecting rays from their heads but take the idea a step further and make the rays lethal...

In Stanley Kubrick's 'mythological documentary,' HAL 9000 computer is the most human character in the movie... But in James Cameron's breakthrough feature, there is, indeed, 'a storm coming in.' His 'Terminator' is a systematic metal, 'surrounded by living tissue,' an invulnerable cyborg, part man, part machine, with whom 'it can't be bargained with, it can't be reasoned with.'

The film opens with two naked men appearing in two different parts of Los Angeles' darkened streets... One is tall and powerfully built, the other is compact and muscular... Both men seek the same person, a small and delicate blond woman by the name of Sarah Connor...

Arnold Schwarzenegger is terrifying as the 'killer cyborg' who 'looks like Death rendered in steel.' He has searched the phone book and brutally shot to death other unfortunate women who bear the same name... He is sent back from the future to present-day (1984) to kill the mother of an unborn enemy...

Schwarzenegger moves with inhuman speed bounding like a panther, scanning methodically with dominated blue eyes his surroundings, and in a perfect simulation of voice, he is on the track of his victim... He examines his weapons with precise movements, drives expressionlessly, and kills without pity, or remorse, or fear... It is a role that suits his talent perfectly...

Michael Biehn seems scared by traumas of others wars... His face outlines a long burn scar... He tries to stop Schwarzenegger's attempts to be carried out... He is sinister in his long coat... His whole life has been combat... He identifies himself as Reese, a soldier from the future, assigned to protect Sarah at all costs... For him it is an honor, a chance to meet the legend... We feel his pain and anguish when he said: 'That terminator is out there. And it absolutely will not stop, ever, until you are dead!'

Linda Hamilton is quiet convincing as the strong innocent prey, targeted for termination, momentarily disoriented, vaguely disturbed... She feels a blind panic boiling up within her, a lightning blot of terror greater than she could ever imagine... She is in a daze, paralyzed, shivering silently, uncontrollably... Her fragile personality disguises a hidden force she did't know she had...

Cameron makes a successful move behind the lens in one of the most breathtaking modern action science fiction films...
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10/10
The wonderful action movie which started a wonderful action saga
DaRick8922 January 2006
The Terminator is one of the best action movies of all time in my opinion. It doesn't set a single foot wrong and it also kicked off a wonderful saga. Without this, there would be no Terminator 2. Think about that. As such, this movie is fondly remembered by many people and it has been the subject of many quotes and spoofs over the years. Why doesn't it set a foot wrong? It is thrilling, almost always entertaining and filled with insane explosions, which more or less makes a good action movie. But 'The Terminator' stands head and shoulders above the rest of it's genre, because of it's well thought-out plot, splendid acting and an eerily memorable music score which gives you a reason to watch the credits at the end.

Now to analysing why the plot is so well-thought out. Well, for one thing, the concept of preventing or setting in stone the future by going back in time was one which wasn't really explored in those days. By exploring it, the Terminator was offering something different, something which has inspired films such as Back to the Future (read the plot synopsis for that film, there are a few similarities). The notion of the final battle of a future war being fought in 'our present', not in the future, between one member of opposing sides, in this case a man and a machine, is also an intriguing one and sets the stage for an exciting battle royale.

I'll run down the plot while I'm here. Sarah Connor, a young woman in her 20's, is the protagonist of the film and our two from the future, Kyle Reese and the Terminator, revolve around her. Reese, who is a battle-hardened soldier who has led a hard life in the wasteland which is the future, must protect Sarah, while the Terminator, an unstoppable cyborg, must kill her, in order to kill her unborn son, the leader of the future resistance.

All of this leads to some thrilling action scenes and insane explosions, topped off by music scores which add to the tension and excitement. The movie purrs into action quickly, but really kicks off at a disco, where Reese and the Terminator have a shootout, resulting in a city-wide drive-by chase involving the police which doesn't really let up until Reese and Sarah are arrested. During the lull in the chase scene, Reese tells Sarah about himself, the Terminator and their general predicament, which is fairly realistic.

The next action scene is the infamous police station massacre which everyone seems to talk about whenever they discuss this movie. I can understand why, too. The Terminator pretty much kills every cop in his path with the greatest of ease, either with the AK-47, his shotgun, or both. He also ends up cutting the power and setting the station on fire, again adding to the tension and excitement.

The last action scene which, like the one in T2, is a chase which leads to a final showdown in a building. It is a slight letdown, but it is still an intense scene. I will refrain from spoiling the ending, as this is too good a movie to be spoiled.

All of the acting fits the bill perfectly. As in T2, there is not a single bad performance to be found. Michael Biehn delivers a remarkably intense performance as Kyle Reese, acting like a typical human would in his situation. He displays his range of emotions at the right times, from passionate to worried to unyielding. It is a wonder that his only other major movie is 'Aliens' and that he is starring in stuff like 'Clockstoppers' these days. Linda Hamilton again does well as Sarah Connor, displaying an innocent woman who shows over the course of the film why she is John Connor's mother, displaying previously unheralded steel at the crunch. The support cast isn't too bad either (Dr. Silberman makes his first appearance). But again, the best performance in the film belongs to the bad guy, in this case, Arnold Schwarzenegger. He acts like a killing machine should; incredibly cold, sterile, soulless and unyielding. His facial expression never changes throughout the film and his physical appearance makes him slightly more imposing and intimidating than the Liquid Terminator. He also commences his famous one-liners which have been the subject of many a spoof, including (no, especially) "I'll be back." This is undoubtedly his best performance, even though it is not his only good one.

I will compliment all involved on making a movie which still manages to look good despite having a low budget. I've seen pretty bad-looking movies with fairly high budgets (read: Scooby-Doo), but never good-looking movies with low budgets.

In the end, The Terminator is a masterful action movie which laid the groundwork for the equally brilliant Terminator 2. If you asked me whether I preferred The Terminator or T2, I would say T2 because I am more familiar with it, otherwise, these two would be on a level footing. If you haven't seen this movie and are an action movie fan, then see it immediately. You won't be disappointed. Trust me.

5/5 stars
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9/10
It's about transformation
catalyst-74 March 2000
I just saw a horrifying, touching, very good movie again; it's The Terminator. Now to talk of it as great film, to compare it with American Beauty might seem idiotic--it's an almost unrelentingly dark, violent, frightening action movie, after all--but strip away the relentless action, strip away the technophobia, strip away the blatant dislike of cops and modern youth, strip away the poignant love story and, at its core, it's about an immature, essentially mindless girl becoming a strong, determined woman. That's a theme more movies should have if we want girls to have strong role models.

In the course of a few hours during which Sarah Connor realises that she is running for her life from a soul-less machine in human flesh that is implacably and violently determined to kill her, she transforms from a girl who can't balance her cheque book to a woman who can order a wounded, beaten man to "get on your feet, soldier." She is clear-headed, not panicky, focused in crisis and incredibly courageous. And it's not that she has lost her essential femaleness but that she's grown up.

It's relentless, heartless violence appals and fascinates me. It's gritty depiction of our society as a prelude to an even more horrific one in 2023 darkens my heart. It's quickly developing love story touches me. Its humor makes the dark places in me smile. But most of all I am touched and fascinated by Sarah's precipitous transformation. As a good life exercise, ask yourself this: Would you have the courage to do what she does?

9.5 out of 10.
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Compelling science fiction
Aidan McGuinness24 June 2002
For the gift of `Aliens' and `The Terminator' I am willing to forgive Cameron's `Titanic'. The key plot concept is beautifully simple - machines take over the earth in the future. Machines are eventually over thrown by one man. Machines travel back in time to kill man's mother, thus preventing him being born and stopping their own defeat. One human also travels back to stop the machines from killing his leader's mother.

`The Terminator' is a classic good versus evil struggle, with little in the way of greys clouding the issue. The terminator is an unstoppable brutal remorseless killer, and it perfectly suits Arnold Schwarzenegger's limited acting abilities. His few lines, including the infamous `I'll be back' are all well judged and timed, and give a great feeling of precision and inhumanity to his character. Coupled with his chiselled features, he's the best choice for the role. Michael Biehn is playing a character type that he'd reprise two years later in Cameron's `Aliens' - the human tough guy: he's got the fight, but still the ability to love and care for people. His features are well chosen for this and although his delivery of lines is hardly exceptional - they tend to come out in the same tone of voice - he's able to carry his part. Linda Hamilton is the woman-thrown-into-chaos, somewhat reminiscent of Sigourney Weaver's Ripley character in `Alien', although Hamilton doesn't have Weaver's strength of presence. All the actors are, for an action science fiction, above average and so never distract.

It's the script, with Cameron's force behind it that lifts the movie from mediocrity. Yes, there's a certain amount of corniness - the `we loved a life time' element for example - but the movie has a real sense of conviction present. The movie believes in itself and, through its passion, will make you believe too. There's a general sense of darkness in the movie - rarely do we see daylight, and, when we do, it's often the soft light of dawn. There's a nice sense of tension in the action scenes, helped not only by Cameron's camera work but also by an excellent electronic score (including a fantastic brooding credit sequence). Sure some of the SFX look clunky in these days of `Attack of the Clones' and `The Fellowship of the Ring', but they still work. There's a certain sense of inevitability, intertwined with hope, permeating the picture that creates a mood I particularly enjoyed and that's harder to find in the current crop of science fiction movies.

`The Terminator' is not a perfect picture. The movie lags in some parts, and the romance element is fairly contrived. Despite all that the movie brims with energy and promise, a script that mostly delivers, characters you can enjoy, and the ultimate Arnie role. Well worth catching. 8/10.
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10/10
An excellent film, highly original
FrankBooth_DeLarge30 January 2005
Terminator is an extremely low budget movie. In fact, just about everything used in it didn't cost much at all, but it is a very effective movie. Back in the '70's and 80's, movies could be very low budget, but still be great(think of John Carpenter's Halloween).

The Terminator is a story about how nuclear war causes the end to mankind and the end result could be the start of an even greater tragedy than the war its self. The entire message of The Terminator is an anti nuclear war message.

Many people think that a few parts in the beginning of the movie are just some random things thrown in. I can understand why, but these seemingly random scenes actually do have a lot to do with the story.

Arnold does a great job as the cyborg who is programmed to kill without mercy or remorse. For those who don't know, this is the movie where the line "I'll be back" was spoken. The other actors do a good job in this. Linda Hamilton made a great choice doing this movie and she really improved her career through it(the movie she made before this was the horrible Children Of The Corn).

This is better than Terminator 2(which is still great by the way), because this movie has more of a story and is more involved. I would recommend watching this movie at any time, it is very well paced and never gets boring, and if you have the time, watch T2 right after this.
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8/10
Amazing, even for a non-fan of the genre
Gypsy-1131 January 1999
I don't like action movies generally, and had to be coaxed into seeing this one by a friend. It was a major and pleasant surprise to me, and I left it with questions beyond the scope of the film, which always happens with the ones I really like (ie, Did John know who Reese was/would be when he sent him?). Most of all, I left it a Michael Biehn fan; he is great in this movie.
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9/10
One of Arnold's best
SmileysWorld26 February 2002
There are actors,and there are movie stars.Arnold Schwarzenegger is without question a movie star,because every time he is on screen, he is,well,Arnold.There is a different Arnold in this film,and this is what I like about it.He,for once,is playing the villain,and to perfection,I might add.He makes for one of the best screen villains ever in cinema history.It's a pity that his "good guy" image won't allow him to play the bad seed more often,but that's Hollywood, I guess.Aside from the thrilling sequel,this is perhaps Arnold's best work.
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10/10
Review of the Special Edition DVD
PeachHamBeach19 April 2003
I've reviewed this classic movie before, but now I'm gonna review the DVD. To start, I must say that although they had their rationale for deleting the "terminated" scenes, as they were called, I think they definitely should have left that one scene in where Sarah Connor calls her mom and tells her to hide in the cabin, and where she finds the listing of Cyberdyne Corp. in the phone book. This scene established Sarah as one who is willing to try to take matters into her hands to stop a nuclear war and a horrible future. She talks to Reese about getting rid of Cyberdyne and they get into an arguement about whether or not that is a mission objective and Reese ends up chasing Sarah into a wooded area. I think the beauty of the woods, flowers and waterfalls was important too, because Reese starts crying and saying how all of this is destroyed, and the future is nothing but blackened, charred ruins littered with the skulls of attempted human genocide. What a terrific, powerful scene. I adore Michael Biehn, and I didn't realize what a great actor (and crier) he is!!! Maybe the other "terminated" scenes were okay to delete, although they were all delightful. The one where Sarah practices her "wholesome waitress" routine was cute. The one where she talks about Disneyland and hot dogs might have seemed silly, but it really brought home how foreign our world is to Reese, as did the crying scene. The tickling scene might have seemed silly to the editor, but I thought it really made a point: after all the violence and bleakness Reese lived through, to be with the woman he's always loved and idolized, to lay in a cozy warm bed with her experiencing the simple joys of life for the first time (I still wonder if Sarah devirginized him, since he said he'd "never" had any special someone in his life) seemed to bring everything into perspective. The scene where you discover that the factory was Cyberdyne Systems was important too, but I'll let these scenes slide. I really think they should consider releasing a TERMINATOR with the scene in the wooded area included. Nevertheless, I still consider this film as one of my favorite sci-fi films, and my favorite James Cameron film. I still admire who he infuses humanity with action and adrenaline, and the missing scenes were wonderful.
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10/10
The best of the best movies ever on the planet, galaxy & the entire universe
springsunnywinter21 August 2007
Warning: Spoilers
The Terminator simply has to be my number 1 favourite movie of all time. When the first time I saw the film I fell in love with it about 15 years ago. The truly original idea of the story-line is amazing about 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. The movie was emotionally & psychologically thrilling and made so dark & sinister that give the tensive mood for the film. A well made for 80's film and I was surprised when I heard that it made with a budget of $6.4 million because it looks more expensive e.g. the nuclear war in Los Angeles 2029. I loved every second of it and the best scenes are:

1. When the terminator killed Ginger & her boyfriend.

2. Shootout at the nightclub (A classic scene in film history).

3. Self surgery on his wrist & eye.

4. Shootout at the police station.

5. When the terminator was driving the lorry.

6. When he unexpectedly rose from the fire as an endoskeleton after that it was a nail biting experience to the end.

The line "I'll be back" is simply the best quote for any film because the audience never expected his position of coming back. Although it is on the IMDb top 250 but it should have been No 1 top place because I have never seen a better movie than this. I've seen it about 100 times and I'm still not fed up. The Terminator gave me the passion about films and my verdict is 1000, 000/10. It's nearly about 25 years old and people still watch it. The 80's was the best decade for movies e.g. An American Werewolf in London, Gremlins, A Nightmare in Elm Street & Predator, the list is endless. Anyway no matter whatever happens there will never be a better film than The Terminator.
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10/10
As good as movies get.
stephenlovelette30 June 2014
Warning: Spoilers
Raise your hand if you've seen The Terminator.

Okay.

So, people of Earth, how many of you recall the last time you caught Arnold's breakout performance?

Who were you with? Were you conveyed by carriage or dirigible?

Put your hand down if you can't remember.

I only ask because revisiting's worthwhile.

This was my first time watching the movie, so my Dad and I instant-streamed T1 via Netflix. And it's glorious, lemme tell ya.

Soon as Arnold starts killing innocent people, my Dad says, "I don't remember him being the bad guy."

We realize he's never seen the first installment before. He only thinks he remembers. And I bet that's the case for many folks not raising their hand.

It's been thirty years since release, but it holds up like you wouldn't believe.

Seriously. The Terminator's a smart movie.

Every character is watertight. Prominent or minor the acting's often what retains the captivation in between gunplay and chase scenes.

The cops are Traxler and Vukovich, played by Paul Winfield and Lance Henriksen (a.k.a. Bishop from Aliens), and have a humorous dynamic. Sarah's roommate, Bess Motta as Ginger, is the sexy bouncy type, and her boyfriend's a well-meaning dummy. Kyle Reese (played by Michael Biehn) is withdrawn and serious.

How about Linda Hamilton as Sarah Connor? She's such an ass-kicking delight, her likeness is still utilized twenty-four years later in Fox's Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles. The show ran for two seasons and stars the pinnacle of underrated actresses, Lena Headey.

Talk about a crowning accolade for Hamilton's performance.

As a standalone, the story is very good and there's almost no need for a sequel. Although the ending lends itself to continuation, it's not necessary.

The movie's greatest weakness is the same mistake made by other science fiction films like Escape from New York and Event Horizon; meaning a drastic underestimation in regards to the timeframe. The scenes that take place in the future are supposed to be set in 2029. I don't think laser ammunition, synthetic skin cells and advanced artificial intelligence are around the corner.

Oh. And there's time travel.

But this is a silly topic of discussion, because the plot's 'self-contained'; the rules allotted to the story's universe are adequate enough. An artificial intelligence develops in 1997 that learns at an exponential rate, making allowances for the suspension of disbelief.

The irony is, the film unfolds a lot like a horror movie.

For now, all I'll say is that The Terminator is a classic must-see film in the same manner The Great Gatsby's a must-read novel.

Those without a hand in the air should stop reading here, because the rest of the review will contain spoiler-heavy analysis.

Nuance abounds in this movie, and it's illustrative of the intelligence packed into every detail. Much of what occurs resonates thematically with the overall narrative.

For example, the recording on the girls' answering machine states, "machines need love to," which obviously foreshadows Sarah's eventual encounter with the Terminator. It's also ironically commenting on the relationship between man and machine, and the eventual fate of humanity.

Another detail akin to this is the name of the club where the Terminator finally locates Sarah. The name is Tech-Noir; which is a touch of self-referential humor. The filmmaking resonates with noir themes, and the subject matter's heavily rooted in science fiction.

It's self-contained because of the limits established by the timeframe. In 1984, a Terminator would indeed have to look through the phone book for every 'Sarah Connor' and kill them off to ensure its mission's accomplished. It also establishes conceivable distance between the protagonist and the pursuing threat.

The audience can accept humanity's resistance to obliteration against seemingly insurmountable odds when considering ideas like utilizing dogs to detect terminators.

As for the special effects, most hold up quite nicely. And there shouldn't be any problem for a sophisticated viewer, given the context in which it's made. There is obvious use of green screen on set, and some devolved CGI, but for the most part everything's on the up-and-up.

Okay, let's dive in.

Timeline A is the history Reese returns from, which includes all events up until 2029. Timeline B is the realm in which the film unfolds, Earth in 1984.

Presumably, the John Connor of Timeline A didn't descend from Kyle Reese and Sarah Connor, right? A terminator didn't arrive in Timeframe A's 1984 to attempt the same assassination?

I'm assuming Timeframe A becomes separate from reality and Timeframe B will continue to unfold into an altered future.

There appears to be no residual effects from the changing of history yet. No chaos or collapse; which is nice.

I wonder if the sequel will cover the issue of reconnecting the loop; specifically, when history B reaches 2029, even if there's no such thing as terminators, will Reese have to travel back in time to impregnate Sarah again?

Anyway, the reason I say it unfolds like a horror movie is the impending doom that's constant throughout. Sarah encounters terrifying scrapes with death around every turn. Consider the odds constantly stacked against her.

After escaping the police station and literally everyone dies, Reese blasts the membrane off the Terminator's metal skeleton and dies to blow its legs off.

Yet its torso continues to crawl after Sarah and is only crushed by the pneumatic press as his fingers claw at her face.

The protagonist's terror is stretched to the utter limit, time and time again.

For those of you still holding an arm in the air, feel free to lower it now.

If nothing else you burnt some calories today, and learned two things about yourself.

1. You're easily manipulated. And… 2. You have exquisite taste in movie reviews.
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10/10
The Terminator is one of the greatest films ever!
Movie Nuttball23 November 2003
Warning: Spoilers
This is one of the great movies of the 80s in MY collection that I think about all the time.

This is the one that started it all! Arnold is excellent in it! Linda Hamilton was great! Michael Biehn was very good as the good guy! Paul Winfield was good! Lance Hendrickson played a different character! In their short roles Bill Paxton and Brian Thompson were cool! Look for Dick Miller! The acting by the cast is very good! The action scenes are very exciting with lots of gun fire and the special effects are awesome! The music is great! Out of the three Terminator films it is hard to decide which is the best but this one is damn good! In fact its one of the best movies ever! I strongly recommend anyone who loves Arnold and the other cast members I mentioned and especially if you love action, sci-fi, or even horror movies to not rent but buy this classic! I recommend The Terminator!

Movie Nuttball's NOTES:

There is one scene that I really like in the Terminator! It is when Sarah Connor is at the dance club. What I love about it is the song and the excellent slow motion camera. Its when Sarah drops something, she goes to pick it up and while she is bending over The Terminator comes walking through the dance floor! Its a classic moment!

Bill Paxton has been a part of three huge franchises! Being The Terminator as The Punk Leader, Aliens as Pvt. W. Hudson, and Predator 2 as Jerry Lambert! Lance Hendrickson has had a similar way of being in epics like Paxton being in The Terminator as Detective Vukovich, in Aliens as Bishop, Alien 3 as Bishop II, and as Charles Weyland in the upcoming 2004 movie Alien vs. Predator! Hendrickson, believe it or not was the original choice to play The Terminator! It is so amazing about this!

By Paxton and Hendrickson being in these films and that Alien Vs. Predator is finally going to invade the theaters in 2004 could it be that this has happened for a reason? The reason possibly being this: In the great Dark Horse comic books there are many editions of Alien Vs. Predator and a edition of Alien vs. Predator vs. The Terminator! What I am saying is could this mean that Alien vs. Predator vs. The Terminator will be made into a huge motion picture or a Alien vs. The Terminator or even a Predator vs. The Terminator movie in the future? Its just a thought but what if? I am sure some writers and/or directors have talked about these subjects! I am also sure big fans of these films and of The Terminator would love to watch these icons battle it out!
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10/10
My favourite film
bountyfour30 January 2015
I don't know how it gets any better. I have watched this film many times and still love it, still feel the tension in the situation, the terror.

Its just about perfect. the acting is great, michael biehn especially. The bad guy is bad, there's no mercy in there. Like many Cameron films, the dialogue brings out real characters, and the relationship between the Sarah and kyle feels genuine. The way the film unfolds is constantly gripping. The soundtrack really emphasises the desperate struggle.

And most of all the whole movie does justice to the plot, and the plot is absolutely watertight. Like the best science fiction films, it leaves you thinking about it, it leaves you agog at the possibility of it, and it doesn't have any holes - the downfall of Terminator 2 in my opinion, which doesn't make any sense from a plot point of view given Terminator.

10 out of 10 - the effects may date but they don't make a movie. Brilliant.
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10/10
1984 and Beyond ...
KinoRunner973212 May 2016
This quintessential marker of the decade may be modest in terms of its budget. But it's certainly epic in terms of its ideas. A piece of action-packed "tech stuff" on the surface, "The Terminator" comes a very long way from simply being a stylish noiresque chase movie with some time travel elements thrown in to spice it up. Because, first and foremost, this stuff is thoroughly rich in meaning. In essence, it's a superbly told tale of a lone warrior on a doomed mission who is given only a fleeting moment to share with the only one of his life. While desperately trying to protect her and everything human in human beings from forces so overwhelmingly destructive that they seem to be on par with the will of the gods in Greek tragedies. And the powerful background, permeated with a sense of impending fate, against which this drama is unfolding, apart from helping to deliver a serious and convincing message, somewhat unexpectedly turns it into one of the most poignant and poetic love stories – where love conquers time and space and the moment becomes eternal. So this picture should be named among very few actually substantial and emotional fables produced by the department of mainstream entertainment – as it sets off on an infinite journey far beyond the confines of a genre … and beyond the infinite.
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10/10
Bold, Gritty, and Realistic
gigan-923 January 2011
Warning: Spoilers
The 1984 classic, an astounding production. One of Cameron's early works, and yet one of his best. The ultimate thing that puts this film on a whole another level above so many other flops is the awesome blend of realism and atmosphere. When I first saw it as a kid, it just felt so real to me. And now, ten years later,t that feeling hasn't left me. Using his camera in a way only he can do, Cameron instills a sense of dread in every scene, something good old Arnold did quite well.

Michael Biehn and Linda Hamilton also did extraordinarily so, just putting the right amount of emotional touches to their performances. Its an involving film throughout that never fails to hit hard, even in light of some terrible and CGI loaded sequels. And who could forget the score, which only added to the already excellent tension. My favorite scene? No doubt, in a disturbing way, the scene where the T-101 is repairing itself, and the lighting is just so perfect gives off a feeling of absolute fear. Or perhaps the scene in the club where Reese first engages the Terminator, either way ingenious and unforgettable moments in film history.

A classic in every way.
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10/10
Great Film
thekansan72623 December 2014
Warning: Spoilers
A great science-fiction film with a compelling story. James Cameron does a good job interweaving a science-fiction narrative with other elements. The movie is considered an independent film with a low budget, but it feels much more than that. The animation for the time is actually done quite well, especially for being a low budgeted film. Linda Hamilton does a great job in the film. She doesn't over act her lines and the end of the film I felt she really outshone in the factory and leaving John her message. Michael Biehn also does a great performance and Arnold Schwarzenegger does a good job, he may of had very few lines but his physical acting is very well done. Schwarzenegger did a good job at portraying a cyborg with use of movements. The dream sequences in the film that go back and forth between the future and the present is amazing, gives it more of a chilling sense knowing that their future is full of hardship and turmoil. Overall this film is amazing and for being 30 years old, is still going to stand the test of time.
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10/10
NO, The First One is Better
sean3202 September 2017
The people who say Judgement Day is better than The Terminator are wrong. This is soooo good there's no topping it. I liked the entire trilogy a lot, but there's no comparing to this first one. It's a brainless action film, but it's not entirely brainless. Excellent world building makes it fascinating to explore, and begs for the two sequels.

Even though it is sort of over the top in all of the action, it's just a really fun movie to see. Greatest pure action movie ever. Period.

And Arnold is better as the bad guy. Just sayin'.
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10/10
Greatest sci-fi/action movie ever?
Egg_MacGuffin25 March 2005
Warning: Spoilers
I don't know if The Terminator is the best sci-fi/action film ever made by anyone, but if it's not...then I don't know what is.

I have seen this movie several dozen times since the age of 4, and it just gets better every time. It does have a special place in my heart, so I'll try and be as objective as possible in my review.

The plot is not as complicated as it seems. A man from the future is sent to 1984 Los Angeles to protect the mother of the unborn man who will lead the human race in resistance to the machines, who have also sent back a "terminator" to kill this woman, named Sarah Conner.

What makes this movie so much fun to watch is the fact that it starts going from frame one and doesn't stop until the very end. We first see the terminator come back, kill some punks (Bill Paxon is one of them!) rob a gun store, and proceed to kill everyone in the phone book who has the name Sarah Conner. In the meantime, the man is sent back, chased by the police, steals a shotgun and some homeless guy's clothes, and then looks for Sarah Conner. And when we first see Sarah, she is a fumbling waitress...not "the mother of the future".

When the terminator, the man (named Kyle Reese), and Sarah Conner all come together, we are treated to one of the paramount action scenes of all time. All three people in the same location and the slow-motion and cheesy 80's music starts up. At this point, anyone who is watching the movie for the first time has no idea who's on who's side. Then the terminator targets Sarah and Kyle interrupts the slow motion with gunfire. After that is a short but effective shoot-out (Uzi 9mm absolutely MUST be used in every 80's action movie), then a vehicle chase while Kyle lays down the exposition.

The thing that makes this movie so effective is the antagonist...the terminator. He is shot several times, thrown through a window, hit by a car...and he keeps on going. And I'm sure everyone (even some who have not see the movie) knows the famous line "I'll be back", which is said just before the terminator "visits the police station", if you know what I mean. At this point, Sarah and Kyle are at the police station, so they're safe, right? "There's thirty cops in this building", so they must be safe. Wrong. Five minutes later, everyone is dead and the building is burning to the ground...and the terminator keeps on going.

James Cameron's directing is outstanding, especially considering the $6,400,000 budget and the primitive yet effective special effects, which deserve special mention. The effects in this movie are, in parts, better than anything that can be done by today's cgi. Sure, there's many parts which are out-dated as hell, but there's still certain effects that look real enough to believe. The gas truck exploding at the end was a miniature actually exploding, not some fake cgi crap done on a computer. The metal terminator skeleton at the end is real, not a cgi effect (but the stop-motion scenes look AWFUL).

Considering the budget in relation to what was accomplished in this film, it's truly a remarkable effort that could probably not have been pulled off by anybody other than James Cameron. Add a script that is commonly used as a teaching tool for upcoming screenwriters and you have a spectacular film.

The only bad thing about this movie is that after watching it today, it makes you sad that nobody working today can make anything as good.
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9/10
This is incredible!!!
hoperain-388-2803698 April 2018
It's made in 1984 and has incredible effect and so much powerful imagination.
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