His loyalty is to a child.
And his enemy is the deadliest machine ever built.
This time there are two. Terminator 2.
I was thinking about trailers to watch this morning and I remembered that there’s a new Terminator movie on the horizon, so I thought I’d check out what Terminator 2‘s trailer.
Wow, I was 10 years old when Terminator 2: Judgement Day came out. No wonder I love this movie.
Not too long ago I rewatched Terminator 2 and while it’s good, I don’t think it’s aged as well as other movies, or even as well as Terminator. It’s a very 90s movie, right down to the mullet on the kid from Salute Your Shorts.
Let’s pretend we haven’t seen the movie seventy times. Skynet, basically the Robot Devil from the year 3000, decides to kill Post-Apocalyptic Jesus as an annoying pre-teen by sending back in time a Terminator, a robot assassin.
Post-Apocalyptic Jesus, having sort of defeated the Robot Devil, attempts to save his Baby Faced 13 year-old self by sending back a Terminator of his own. Post-Apocalyptic Jesus kind of has a tin ear about things, because he decides to send back a Terminator that looks exactly like the Terminator that tormented his mother and murdered his father. Yeah, Post-Apocalyptic Jesus, that will go over great with your moms.
What’s a hilarious conceit that lurks in the background of the Terminator trailers and series is that somehow the Terminator is always the same Terminator. Listen to the trailer, there’s a he’s back vibe to the whole thing, when uh, no, he’s not back.
In Terminator 3 Pre-Apocalypse Jesus meets another Terminator and he’s like, ” I watched you die! How are you back!” And I’m like, Pre-Apocalypse Jesus, there are a lot of Terminators and they all look alike. They also all have Austrian accents. It’s not a difficult concept. I know you’ve watched Back to the Future.
So the Robot Devil’s Terminator is called T-1000 and it’s better than Post-Apocalypse Jesus’s Terminator, which I’ll call Arnold. Because Arnold Schwarzenegger, that magical gift from Austria, is playing the Terminator called Arnold.
So T-1000 and Arnold home in on Pre-Apocalypse Jesus and he’s a whiny little punk. His mom is also locked up in a sanitarium because she wasn’t really good at not telling people about the future war with the Robot Devil. Seriously, she seems to expect people to believe her.
Here’s the thing about James Cameron, the director, I think he’s like the only guy who managed to make really iconic women action heroes. I’m not sure what he figured out that no one else has really figured out. Take the Tomb Raider movies. They aren’t good. You know Ellen Ripley in the Alien sequel? Yeah, he did that movie too.
The theme behind his two most famous action heroes, Sarah Connor and Ellen Ripley, is motherhood. It’s a weird angle to take, but there it is. What’s also interesting is that Sarah Connor and Ellen Ripley aren’t action heroes initially. Sarah is a waitress. Ellen is a kind of bureaucrat on basically an space oil ship. It’s in their second movies that they have to go hardcore and what’s their motivation? It’s kind of their motherhood.
Sarah comes out of Terminator 1 a hardcore badass and she fights robots because they’re after her son and she’s like, fuck you robots, I’ll kill you all. She’s kind of so far over the badass line that her son kind of has to remind her that, you know, he’d like to have her around so she doesn’t basically blow up from her robot hate.
Ellen walks into Aliens a woman who lost her daughter to that ultimate Terminator, Time, and when she finds a surrogate daughter in Newt, she starts to badass up until the very end of the movie when Evil Alien Mom is threatening Newt and Ellen Ripley is like GET AWAY FROM MY BABY I’LL KILL YOU WITH MY ROBOT ARMS!
But I’ve clearly gone off on a tangent. Pre-Teen Jesus, his Moms, and Arnold team up to fight the T-1000. It’s good.
I’d recommend Terminator 2: Judgment Day, but not in a vacuum. I’d say watch Terminator 1 and then watch Terminator 2. I might even say watch Terminator 3, but I’ll want to double check that by rewatching it first.