Pop culture is all about the best and the most popular fandoms in Hollywood, and one of the prominent parts of that world is James Cameron’s ‘Terminator’. A classic in the sci-fi genre, this movie changed the way people saw action and science films. Developed by Cameron based on a dream he had about a machine coming out of the fire unscathed (which could also have been a Targaryen!), Arnold Schwarzenegger’s eccentric feasibility with the character of a deadly robot became a story that will never cease to amaze you, no matter how old it is. With a plot line that still demands a proper resolution (because time travel is never easy, not even on paper!) and action legacy that continued to inspire many other filmmakers, ‘Terminator’ series is a must watch, at least the first two of them. If you haven’t seen it yet, stop here, and come back only when you can say “I’ll be back” in T-800’s voice. Until then, “hasta la vista, baby!”.
Judgement Day: Plot Summary
After the events of the first film, Sarah Connor is the only one who knows the fate of the world. The last film ended with her being pregnant with John and driving South. For the second film, one would have expected to see her raising her son for the day he’d have to take the responsibility of saving the world. But we see a completely different picture. John is in a foster home and Sarah has been put into a mental institution. Here’s how they ended up in these places. Even though Kyle had told her that she raised John to be the fierce leader, Sarah was just another normal girl. She knew what was about to happen and if she wasn’t ready for it, how could she prepare her son? So, she started hanging out with people who could help them. Special forces, army men, arms dealers, Sarah mingled with any and all and took the knowledge of combat, firearms, stealth, whatever would be necessary to teach John. As he grew up, she passed on the knowledge.
Despite turning him into a badass kid, Sarah was also aware that she was taking away his childhood, something that keeps bothering her throughout the film. The only way she could give it back to him was to stop the people who would hand over power to artificial intelligence in the first place. In one such attempt, she broke into a secret lab, but before she could do anything, she was caught. She tries to explain the end of the world theory to everyone, but, expectedly, no one believes her. They think of her as a common loon and send her to an asylum. As for John, he was just a kid. They told him that whatever theories his mother had fed him were a lot of horse-dung and that he should purge himself of that and learn to live a normal life with his foster parents. John believed these people and harboured anger towards his mother for leading him into this lie. But that was until all she said came true. When not one but two Terminators come looking for him, John is forced to confront the reality: his mother was right all along.
Sarah’s Character Arc
What made ‘Judgement Day’ better than its predecessor was that it allowed more space to its characters and let them grow out of their shell. Unlike the last film, where only the timeline brought some complexity to the film, the characters being the straightforward form of themselves, this film relied a lot on the arc its characters took by the end. For example, the Sarah we saw in the last film, and the Sarah we encounter in this one are completely different from each other, almost like they are different people! This Sarah has been hardened by experience and the only goal of her life is to train and protect John so that he can fulfill his destiny.