With another dive into the Terminator universe set for release, the battle against Skynet to avert Judgement Day continues. As a huge fan of the franchise, here’s every Terminator film, ranked from worst to best.
It was 1984 when the battle of Skynet took off as Sarah Connor learnt of the potentially doomed future that lied ahead for both her and her unborn son. Fast forward to 2019 and we’re still discussing, financing and buying tickets to Terminator films. There’s been quite an obsession and I for one have been a fan ever since the first “Come with me if you want to live.”
Some may question whether more Terminator films are needed but, for me, why not? The main thing is if they’re any good. So here’s my countdown of the worst to best Terminator films.
Side note: As we’re a film site, we’ll focus on the movies and not include the short running 2009 TV Series ‘Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles.’ It was okay, I guess.
5. Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines (2003)
It’s maybe no coincidence that it’s been publicly stated that Terminator: Dark Fate follows on from Terminator 2 and not 3. They’re essentially forgetting about Rise of the Machines. Why? Well, it’s just a bad film. Relying too heavily on the formula that made the original films so successful, the 2003 instalment does nothing inventive and plods along through the paces. It’s not helped by some rough casting choices as characters fail to live up to their predecessors in any way.
4. Terminator Genisys (2015)
Lame title aside, you’ve got to hand it to Terminator Genisys for at least trying something different. Heavily spoiled by its own marketing, the Alan Taylor directed effort swung for the fences but, unfortunately missed. Its horrendously muddled plot line doesn’t help as you’re left with more questions than answers. It did, however, help bring Arnold Schwarzenegger back into the fold but sadly the casting of Emilia Clarke and Jason Clarke as Sarah and John Connor really didn’t work. It’s maybe the strangest Terminator film but that’s not really what we were all looking for is it?
3. Terminator Salvation (2009)
Now this may be a slightly controversial choice but I actually enjoyed McG’s Terminator Salvation. It’s still a flawed film, don’t get me wrong, but in taking a different stab at the Terminator timeline by being set in the future, as the battle between Man and Machine wages on, it feels different. It’s a little simple in its scope but it’s an enjoyable action flick that romps along. You may not agree but, I for one, enjoyed Christian Bale as John Connor. It’s a fun popcorn flick if you need one.
2. The Terminator (1984)
Ah, where it all began… James Cameron’s The Terminator is inventive, action-packed and thoroughly enjoyable. Introducing us to the perilous war that lays ahead in our future, we’re thrust into a thrill ride from start to finish. It’s no surprise this led to the franchise we’re now talking about. Arnie may be Conan, Hercules and many more but it’s his role as the T-800 that we’ll all remember him by.
1. Terminator 2: Judgement Day (1991)
For me, it’s the rare situation where the sequel actually betters the original. Judgement Day is a bona fide blockbuster in every sense of the word. Full of action, Terminator 2 feels bigger in scale and higher in stakes. Linda Hamilton reprises the role we all know her for and Arnie is back better than ever. Add in a teenage John Connor, played by Edward Furlong, along with a baddie that may never be bettered with Robert Patrick’s T-1000 and you’ve got a recipe for success. I’d watch this film time and time again. And then again for good measure.
Agree? Disagree? Let us know.
The latest instalment, Terminator: Dark Fate, lands at Cinemas on Wednesday 23rd October 2019 so stay tuned for our review.
By Jordan Barrett