Tuesday, November 10, 2009

“Terminator 2: Judgment Day”

It’s not often that a sequel surpasses the original, but James Cameron’s “Terminator 2: Judgment Day” certainly does. The reason is that Cameron wisely decided not to rehash the hugely successful Terminator movie. He turned his nascent franchise on its ear by making the original T-800 Terminator (Arnold Schwarzenegger) this film’s hero. This T-800 is sent back from the future to protect the teenage John Conner (Edward Furlong) from the shape-shifting T-1000 (Robert Patrick). In the process of rescuing mom Sarah Conner (Linda Hamilton) from a mental hospital and convincing Cyberdyne’s lead inventor Miles Dyson (Joe Morton) to destroy his work, the T-800 and John, forge an unlikely friendship. It almost takes on the air of a buddy film with John teaching the socially-awkward Terminator (He is an android, after all.) catchphrases like “Hasta la vista, baby” while the T-800 becomes the father figure John’s never had. Robert Patrick’s T-1000 is imposing because of his dogged determination and the serious expression he maintains throughout the film (Android, again). And the special effects still stand up today. There’s a sequel (a lackluster retread of this story, wisely not directed by Cameron) so you know that judgment day will still arrive. But that shouldn’t spoil the enjoyment of watching John, Sarah and the Terminator trying to keep the future from happening. My tweet about the Terminator turned Governor: Terminator 2: Judgment Day-Cyborg Arnold Schwarzenegger finds Robert Patrick’s T-1000 almost as challenging as the California legislature. 8.5 (out of 10)

“Terminator 2: Judgment Day”

Released: 1991

Rating: R

Length: 139 minutes

Cast: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Linda Hamilton, Robert Patrick, Edward Furlong

Director: James Cameron

Genre(s): Sequel, Action, Thriller

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