Guest Post -James M's review of Terminator 2: Judgement Day

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Whats popping, movie fans?
Its your old friend the CrazyGamerHistorian1999, here to review the awesome 1991 Sci-Fi action blockbuster hit sequel to 1984's The Terminator known as Terminator 2 Judgement Day or T2 for short which was produced and directed by James Cameron like with the first film. But first, before we start, I wish to mention one or two things I didn't mention in my review of The Terminator. First off, the reason the T800 and Kyle had to obtain clothes is because they weren't wearing anything when they used the Time Displacement Equipment. Apparently, the Time Displacement Field can only be generated by organic tissue and you can't bring any clothes or advanced tech.

Number two, its remarkable that when Sarah Connor became prego with John Connor, she didn't get ostracized for having children with somebody without tying the knot. Well, considering the fact she's on the run after being hunted by a Terminator and is living off the grid, she's very lucky. Anyway's with that out of the way, time to get to discussing Terminator 2, which has Linda Hamilton and Arnold Schwarzenegger reprising their roles and sees the role of John Connor played by (at the time) young actor Edward Furlong, who was 13 years old when picked to play 10 year old John.

So where do we begin with the plot?

It's been 10 years since Sarah Connor narrowly escaped termination at the hands of a Terminator sent from the future by the rogue A.I known as Skynet and she's been preparing John for the day he will lead the Resistance in the Future War against Skynet and its robotic armed forces which will unfold after the events of Judgement Day, the day Skynet nearly wipes out the human race. But by the time of 1995, Sarah has been sent off to a mental institution after trying to blow up a factory associated with Cyberdine, the very company responsible for eventually making Skynet, and for trying to warn everyone about the looming robot apocalypse. What about John? He's OK, he's been living with foster parents Janelle and Todd Voight for quit some time.

It's not long before things change for Sarah (again) and John. One night in Acton, California, after a truck leaves, a Time Displacement Field appears with crackling electricity and an energy bubble and as things come to rest, we see a mysterious figure kneeling in the crater close to a partially ruined truck. One look at this guy and its Arnold Schwarzenegger, back in his iconic role. That's right, Skynet sent back another Terminator just in case the T800 in 1984 failed its mission. So what does the T800 do? It heads straight to a bar to not only seek out a transport but clothes. Why? BECAUSE ITS NAKED! Walking inside the bar, Arnold finds the perfect outfit but a guy is already wearing it, leading to this exchange.

T-800: I need your clothes, your boots and your motorcycle.
(Bikers laugh)
Cigar Boy: You forgot to say please. (Places a smoking cigar on T-800's torso)

Cue the bar fight, which involves the T-800 gripping and breaking Cigar Boy's hand, tossing a biker (who just hit the Terminator in the head with a bat) out the window and pinning another biker to the pool table with a FREAKING KNIFE IN THE DUDE'S SHOULDER! Well, thank goodness there were no ripping out hearts this time. Anyway's, the Terminator obtains the clothes he needs, along with a pistol, the bar owner's rifle, some glasses and a motorcycle before riding off.
Meanwhile, we get another visitor from the future, Robert Patrick's character. The second newcomer takes out a cop before acquiring a police uniform and a gun before setting out to search for John Connor, who leaves his foster home by motorbike with his pal, much to Todd and Janelle's annoyance, the following day.

The T-800 and the mysterious blonde man posing as a cop track down John to the Galleria where during the confrontation, it turns out the T-800 is actually on OUR side this time and was sent back to protect John. The guy in the cop uniform? A new Terminator actually sent by Skynet to get rid of John, the T-1000, but unlike the T-800, this guy is made of liquid metal so he's super impossible to destroy. After narrowly escaping, John learns that his future self reprogrammed the T-800 and sent him back in time to protect John in the past. Side note: During the start of the movie, while getting a glimpse at the war between man and machine, we actually got a glimpse at Future John, who was actually played by Michael Edwards.

Later that same night, John calls his ex-foster parents to try and warn them about the T-1000 but unfortunately, its already too late, the T-1000 is there and actually bumped off Janelle and is impersonating her. To make things a hundred times dark, Todd, who was still alive, is eliminated by the T-1000 when the liquid metal monster stabs him... through the mouth. AAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHRRRRRRGH! OK, I said this before that, when it comes to movies and stuff that involves characters getting taken out, I prefer people getting knocked unconscious, blown up, shot in the head or heart or stabbed/impaled through the heart. That is worse than the first T-800 ripping out a punk guy's heart.

Anyway, after discovering the T-800 is programmed to follow HIS orders, John and his protector decide to go and bust Sarah out of the mental ward. Come on, Sarah is John's mum and they're family, they need her and she is vital to the defeat of Skynet too. As John and the T-800 make their way inside the mental ward, Sarah has already begun her shot at escaping. After narrowly getting past several guards and Doctor Silberman from the first movie, she encounters the T-800 just as it is exiting an elevator and carrying a gun. As you can expect, due to the fact she's still traumatized by what happened in the first film, Sarah screams and runs away only to get taken hostage by the doctors including Silberman. The T-800 saves her and holds out his hand to help her up while saying the iconic, "Come with me if you want to live." John does his best to make sure she knows the Terminator is on their side this time and they escape just as they have another encounter with the T-1000. Silberman? He's fine, but he is in shock from seeing a liquid Terminator guy.

After escaping and healing their wounds, plus activating the T-800's CPU so it can learn to be more human, Sarah and the group pay an old friend Enrique and his family a visit so she can gather weapons and flee to Mexico. However, while watching John and the T-800 interact, Sarah falls asleep and has another nightmare about Judgement Day, the day Skynet takes over, which is set to happen on August 29th, 1997, just two years away. I forgot to mention in a previous scene, the T-800 (at Sarah's request mind you) explained how Skynet came to be and how Judgement Day happened. How does Skynet's hostile attack happen? It launches America's nukes at Russia. Aw crap!

Waking up from the nightmare, Sarah arms herself and goes after Miles Dyson, who is working for Cyberdine and is the one who will basically be responsible for the loss of millions if Skynet is built. That's right, Sarah plans on murdering Dyson and destroying Cyberdine, all so she can stop Judgement Day from happening. Ok, Sarah, if you don't want the dark future to happen, WHY ARE YOU WASTING YOUR TIME TRAINING JOHN WHEN YOU CAN JUST LAUNCH YOUR PRE-EMPTIVE STRIKE ON SKYNET AND STOP THE LOOMING APOCALYPSE?!

Anyway, she tracks down Dyson and attacks his home, injuring him and attempting to actually end his life. But she stops at the last minute before she can end the injured man's life, mostly thanks to a combo of John and the T800's arrival, seeing Mrs. Dyson and Danny (Miles' son and wife) protect him and realizing Miles hasn't done anything yet. Hoping to get Dyson on their side, John has the T-800 remove a bit of its living tissue and show a part of its metal endoskeleton and everybody explains the events to come. Dyson takes it rather well, though he is horrified to learn of whats to come and, in a surprise twist, it turns out what's left of the first Terminator, the arm and CPU, is being used. Aw, crap. DYSOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOON!

Anyway's, Sarah, John and the Terminator with help from Dyson get inside the Cyberdine HQ and get to work trashing the lab in an attempt to get rid of the research and save the future, even obtaining the T-800 arm and CPU in the process. But not long after, the cops arrive, leading to an epic action sequence with the Terminator blowing up cop cars while Sarah has a shoot out with the police. By the end of the battle, the T-800 has received battle damage and several cops have been injured. Dyson uses a bomb and sacrifices himself to ensure his work never leads to the destruction of the world. Unfortunately, things nearly go south as the T-1000 arrives and pursues John, Sarah and the T-800 which leads to a steel factory where the chase ends and the final battle has begun.

The T-800 has a lengthy battle with the T-1000 and ends up getting taken out of the fight, losing an arm like its predecessor and shuts down. Don't worry, our robo hero will reactivate soon. Sarah on the other hand fights the T-1000 and is badly hurt and ends up at its mercy with the liquid metal Terminator threatening to end her. Using its shape shifting powers, the T-1000 impersonates Sarah to lure John out of hiding. However, John catches on, due to the fact the T-1000 is malfunctioning, and the real Sarah attacks. driving the liquid metal monster towards a ledge overlooking a pit of lava. But when Sarah runs out of bullets, the T-1000 taunts her and thats when the T-800 returns and blasts the T-1000 with a grenade launcher, causing it to become mangled by the explosion.

Attempting to reform and repair itself, the T-1000 falls into the lava and is destroyed by the intense heat. Afterwards, John tosses the arm and CPU of the 1984 Terminator into the magma so it will never be used to create Skynet. But there is one more CPU and its inside the still-active T-800 on John's side. John begs and protests but the Terminator has no choice, Skynet must be destroyed at all costs. Stepping on to a crane, the T-800 says goodbye to John as Sarah lowers it into the molten steel. As the Terminator vanishes beneath the molten steel, it gives a heroic thumbs up to John before being destroyed as the young boy mourns the loss of his friend and Sarah hugs her son solemnly.

Here, the end of the movie goes two ways...

Ending one: We get a view of the freeway as Sarah narrates that the unknown future rolls in and she approaches it with hope, the movie ends (kind of setting up Terminator 3) with Sarah saying if a machine can learn the value of human life than so can humanity.

Ending Two: This one's my favorite, thanks to Sarah and John's efforts, Skynet and Judgement Day never come to be and by 2027 (or 2029) the future is bright and the world is safe. John is a senator and Sarah is still alive, but during her narration, she mentions that the dark future still exists for her like traces of a dream, implying that Skynet could still be built and Judgement Day could happen at any moment. But the film still ends with everybody happy.

Final Thoughts/Conclusion:

Terminator 2, like the first film, is a legend in its own time, being well received by critics who commended the action and special effects. It's also still viewed today as the best action movie of all time and the best Terminator movie out there. It was a box office success and paved the way for a theme park ride T2 3D: Battle Across Time and a sequel Terminator 3, which was followed up by Terminator Salvation and Terminator Genisys, which ended up paving the way for Terminator 6 Dark Fate to be an alternate sequel to T2. I found this film to be enjoyable with great acting and incredible special effects and a compelling plot. I give this movie a 10/10.

My Ranking of the Terminator films so far...
1. Terminator 2 Judgement Day -Epic
2. The Terminator (1984) -Good
3. Terminator Genisys -Epic
4. Terminator 3 Rise of the Machines -Awesome
5. Terminator Salvation -Fun

James M signing off!

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