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The Terminator [1984] (1 disc)

Director:James Cameron
Writer:Gale Anne Hurd
James Cameron
Composer:Brad Fiedel
Length:107 minutes
(1 hour 47 minutes)
MPAA Rating:R
Suggested Event Use:Friday 13
Sorting Category:SciFi
Sorting Tub:India
IMDB Rating:8.0/10
Rotten Tomatoes Rating:100%
Amazon Rating:4.5/5 stars
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Synopsis: Two visitors arive from a dystopic future: one to kill the mother of a future military leader, the other to protect her.

Reaction: This is a revolutionary movie that introduces one of the most well-known action icons in cinema history.

Personal Rating: 9/10

James Cameron => Director / Writer
Gale Anne Hurd => Writer
Brad Fiedel => Composer
Arnold Schwarzenegger => The Terminator
Bess Motta => Ginger Ventura
Bill Paxton => Punk Leader
Brian Thompson => Punk
Bruce M. Kerner => Desk Sergeant
Dick Miller => Pawnshop Clerk
Earl Boen => Dr. Peter Silberman
Franco Columbu => Future Terminator
Hettie Lynne Hurtes => TV Anchorwoman
Joe Farago => TV Anchorman
Lance Henriksen => Detective Hal Vukovich
Linda Hamilton => Sarah Connor
Michael Biehn => Kyle Reese
Paul Winfield => Lieutenant Ed Traxler
Rick Rossovich => Matt Buchanan
Shawn Schepps => Nancy
Stan Yale => Derelict in Alley

Random Trivia For This Title:

  • The original treatment by James Cameron included the detail that the Terminator needed to eat periodically in order for his human flesh to survive. A scene is included where the Terminator eats a candy bar, wrapper and all. This detail was incorporated into the script for Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines, with the Terminator selecting Arnold Schwarzenegger's favorite Austrian chocolate wafer. When fans learned that a scene had shot where the Terminator ate chocolate, the reaction was overwhelmingly negative and the scene was omitted.
  • O.J. Simpson was considered for the role of the Terminator, but the producers feared he was "too nice" to be taken seriously as a cold-blooded killer.
  • Michael Biehn's character gets bitten on the hand by another character. This happens to him in every James Cameron movie he's in (i.e. Aliens and The Abyss).
  • The beginning of production was postponed for nine months, due to Arnold Schwarzenegger's commitment to Conan the Destroyer. During this time, James Cameron wanted to be working but didn't have the time to do a whole other film so he took on a writing assignment; this turned out to be Aliens.
  • Near the beginning of the movie, when Sarah Connor (Linda Hamilton) receives a message on her answering machine breaking her date, the voice on the machine is James Cameron's. Years later, Hamilton and Cameron got married and subsequently divorced.
  • Edward James Olmos and Louis Gossett Jr. had been considered for the role of Lt.Traxler.
  • (Also a spoiler for Terminator 2: Judgment Day) Two deleted scenes gave Skynet and the Future War some more background. The first was a scene where Sarah discovers that a company called Cyberdyne will be responsible for building Skynet and the Terminators. She tries to convince Reese that they should destroy this company, in order to prevent the dark future from ever happening. Reese tells her that his mission is conserving the future, not changing it. The second scene shows that Cyberdyne owns the factory where Sarah battled the Terminator, and one of their employees finding the Terminator's microchip (this event actually causes Skynet to exist in the first place). Both these ideas became major plot points for the sequel Terminator 2: Judgment Day. Director James Cameron cut the scenes because he wanted to leave some questions yet unanswered, which he never regretted as he could make an entire sequel out of the unused ideas.
  • There is only one time that Michael Biehn and Arnold Schwarzenegger are in the same frame together. It is when Kyle blasts The Terminator the second time at Tech Noir. When they finally meet in the factory, it is not Schwarzenegger, just a metallic puppet.
  • Arnold Schwarzenegger's famous debut line 'I'll be back' was originally scripted as 'I'll come back'.
  • One afternoon during a break in filming, Arnold Schwarzenegger went into a restaurant in downtown L.A. to get some lunch and realized all too late that he was still in Terminator makeup - with a missing eye, exposed jawbone and burned flesh.
  • Science fiction author Harlan Ellison sued James Cameron, claiming that the film was plagiarized from the two [The Outer Limits] episodes that Ellison wrote, namely {The Outer Limits: Soldier} (#2.1) and {The Outer Limits: Demon with a Glass Hand} (#2.5). The concept of "Skynet" could also have been borrowed from an Ellison short story called {I Have No Mouth and I Must Scream}. The suit was settled out of court and newer prints of the film acknowledge Ellison.