Starring: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Linda Hamilton, Edward Furlong, Robert Patrick, Earl Boen, Joe Morton
Directed by: James Cameron
Written By: James Cameron, William Wisher Jr.
Rating: R (US) Running Time: 2 hr 17 min
I’m convinced that if James Cameron had somehow ended up directing Robocop 2 back in 1990 and Highlander II: The Quickening in 91, the world would be a vastly better place to live in! What I’m saying is, James Cameron is seriously good at making sequels. So much so he should be the go-to person in Hollywood for anyone looking to make a franchise entry. Maybe set up a consulting firm or something, and spare us from terrible sequels forever more!
I base this complete adulation for Mr. Cameron’s superior ways of the sequel on Aliens and Terminator 2, and you’ll find my ode to awesomeness that is Aliens here.
Terminator 2: Judgment Day is the perfect sequel in my opinion. Essentially the same plot as the first film, in that a highly skilled and powerful assassin is sent back in time to kill the person, in this case John Connor( Edward Furlong), responsible for the human’s victory over the machines in the future. As before, a lone protector is also sent, but this time around, James Cameron has a little fun by keeping our time traveler’s roles a mystery until it’s time for the big reveal.
He also doesn’t just stop with a simple repeat of the first films plot, he builds on it. In Judgment day we get to know more about how the machines became our uber intelligent mean-spirited overlords! We even get to meet the one man responsible for the machines intelligence, and then debate over the pros and cons of his death. Add to that some pretty vivid and shocking imagery of a nuclear blast in downtown Los Angeles, and it’s clear this sequel hasn’t just been thrown together to make a quick buck.
Terminator 2 takes everything that was great about the first film, and makes it better. It’s slickly made, looks fantastic, and the action is staged perfectly. It was one of the first films to make use of CGI technology, and the makeup effects are a vast improvement over the original Terminator movie. Beyond the Oscar-winning technical aspects of the film, it’s also a showcase for a fantastic performance from Linda Hamilton, and Brad Fiedel again provides another superb score.
If you liked the original, I’m pretty certainly you’ll be okay with the sequel. T2 isn’t as raw or as Tech-noir as the original, but the action is staged better, and it punctuates its story with some really nice moments of humor. Terminator 2 isn’t really suitable for younger audiences.
This is a big screen movie all the way. How else will you properly enjoy the Oscar nominated photography? At home a HD viewing is recommended. When this came out back in 91, I saw it 6 times at the theater!
Best moment: << spoiler! >>
The scene where Sarah Connor dreams about a nuclear attack on Los Angeles is both breathtaking, and disturbing. Especially when the blast wave hits and abruptly cuts off Sarah’s scream, and her flesh is torn from her body leaving behind her skeleton still holding onto a fence.