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490 of 523 people found the following review helpful
on November 29, 2008
Format: Blu-ray
This review refers to the BLU-RAY edition ONLY and NOT to the DVD edition.

Well having The Terminitor series on DVD and loving them and having recently upgraded to a blu-ray player I decided to take the plunge and upgrade my collection to high definition blu-ray format.

Boy, what a mistake that was.

Picture quality is AWFUL - well awful for blu-ray anyway. They've taken the same standard definition source as the DVD and upscaled it for blu-ray - but it's still standard definition. Only the menu is in High Definition, the movie is not. I tested my DVD version upscaled against the blu-ray edition and found them identical - if anything the DVD came out slightly on top.

It also only contains 2 extras - the special effects making of and the retrospective - nothing else. My DVD edition contains over a dozen extras.

My verdict if you're thinking of buying The Terminator in blu-ray and you have an upscaling DVD/BD player - forget it. Stick with the DVD version instead, picture is the same and it has more extras. It's cheaper too.

Maybe one day this wonderful movie will receive the treatment it deserves and be digitally remastered and have it's frames scanned with a high definition camera - but until then sit on your DVD's and wait.
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166 of 184 people found the following review helpful
on April 23, 2011
Format: Blu-ray
This is the fourth release of this film on blu-ray already. There is the 2006 original, a 2009 lenticular cover version, a 2010 blu-ray/DVD combo and now this 2011 blu-ray book. While I won't debate the merits of the film itself, MGM is currently in the middle of bankruptcy proceedings and I assume this is the primary reason for this new release. Unfortunately, they haven't bothered upgrading the original MPEG-2/LPCM 2006 mastering of the film itself; all the versions contain identical disc content. If you don't already own this film and want a fancy book style package for a 5 year old blu-ray master, go ahead and pick this up. Otherwise, you're better off finding a less expensive older version.
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130 of 149 people found the following review helpful
on December 29, 2001
Format: DVD
The original "Terminator" is arguably the greatest sci-fi/action film ever, and the Special Edition DVD finally does this classic film justice. Many people look at the sequel as the better of the two, but remember, Cameron was given a huge budget for T2. He was forced to film "The Terminator" for less than $6 million. If you're like me, you could write enough about this movie to fill an encyclopedia, but I'll try to give just a breif plot description for those who have yet to see it.
In the future, SkyNET, the supercomputer in control of all military power, decides that humans must be destroyed and begins a massive nuclear war that destroys most of the population. The survivors form a resistance agains the computer and its mechanical army, and eventually defeat it, thanks to their leader John Connor. In a final effort to win, the computer sends a Terminator back in time to kill John's mother, Sarah, before he is born. The humans send back a lone soilder, Kyle Reese, to protect Sarah from the seemingly unstoppable cyborg.
When the movie was originally filmed, the soundtrack was recorded in mono, which sounded horrible on the original DVD release of the Terminator. But here you can find a newly recorded soundtrack, with the original soundtrack remixed along with new gun and explosion sound effects. Most of the new sounds are very cool (esp. the HK entrance in the first scene), and the new gun effects are good for the most part. Only in a few instances are the new sounds a little weak. Fortunately the DVD also sports the original mono soundtrack for when you want to watch the original verion.
Next to the film itself, the best part of this DVD is the Special Features, most of which were unavailable before. There are two Terminator documentaries, which have cast and crew interviews and behind the scene footage of the original filming of the Terminator, very cool stuff for die hards. Also featured are deleted scenes from the original film, which offer a deeper look into the Terminator mythology, and shows different sides of some characters which you wouldn't see in the original. Also in the special features are all the original storyboards for the film and hundreds more photos of the sets, actors and sketches from the original production. Simply put, for die hard Terminator fans, your wait is over. Terminator: Special Edition is a godsend.
HERE ARE ALSO TWO SECRETS I HAVE FOUND SO FAR ON THE DVD. On side one, under Languages, more to "Francais" so it is highlighted. Now move to the right. A little box on the right side of the screen should now be highlighted. Click on it. This gives access to one of four short, random interviews. The second secret is also on side one. Under special features, click on "DVD Rom Features," then under there move so that the Main Menu shortcut is highlighted. Move to the right again, and another small box should now be highlighted. Click on that. This also gives access to four more interviews. Enjoy!
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68 of 81 people found the following review helpful
VINE VOICEon June 9, 2007
Format: DVDVerified Purchase
Alright, The Terminator is a classic that helped proppel Arnold S and director Cameron to fame, so I won't bother reviewing the movie because I give it 5 stars all the way, even though I prefer T2.

Okay let's be serious. If you're expecting to get a new DVD edition you're wrong. This is still the same DVD as the last release. Nothing new except now it has a nice sleeve. Now if you don't own a copy and you want the sleeve (Like me) this is good, but if you already own the last release don't buy this one. It is no different except for the nice sleeve that covers it.
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58 of 71 people found the following review helpful
on November 26, 2009
Format: DVDVerified Purchase
I just received this DVD today and I went to view the special features and I found out the hard way that this DVD was not the Special Edition as Amazon.com said it was! I bought the Special Edition several years ago and it's all scratched up now so I wanted to buy a new replacement one. I am very disappointed with Amazon.com about this issue!!!!!

The version I got from Amazon has:

1) The feature movie
2) Trailer
3) DVD rom features

Now the Actual Special Edition Version has:

1) The Feature Movie
2) Trailers
3) T.V. Spots
4) Documentaries: "THE TERMINATOR: A RETROSPECTIVE" & "OTHER VOICES"
5) TERMINATED Scenes with commentary
6) Still Galleries
7) Original Treatment
8) DVD ROM Features

So I want to let everyone know that this version is NOT the Special Edition version!!!!! It is just a single release version that you get from Wal-Mart or anywhere for $7.50 or less than what Amazon or the manufacturers are charging!!!!! So don't waste your money!! Just go to Wal-Mart! I hope that I have helped at least one person to make an informed decesion by writing this review. 5 stars for it being The Terminator. 1 star for false advertisement!
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
on April 22, 1999
Format: DVD
All the James Cameron's films contain a big disaster of some kind. Although it may not look it, The Terminator is his most nightmarish work. Three billion people perish as a defense network computer, the SkyNet, initiates a nuclear war that leaves Earth in ruins. Even though we do not witness this nightmare-come-true on screen, it emanates from every part of this frighteningly atmospheric masterpiece. Remnants of the human population battle a desperate war against SkyNet's army of sophisticated war machines, under the leadership of John Connor. As SkyNet realizes that its days are numbered, it sends a human-looking mercenary back through time to assassinate the mother of John Connor so that he can never be born and not lead the human resistance to its victory. John Connor is able to send a protector for his mother, Kyle Reese, but can he stop the evil cyborg before it's too late? Although The Terminator is not as much action-packed as T2 or Aliens, and the action sequences are not the best I have seen, it doesn't damages the movie at all. On the contrary: time is devoted to character and story development and I quickly realized that its primary purpose is not just to entertain, but also to warn: to warn against the power that we possess and how it can be misused to destroy its creator: humans. Attention to detail, that would become the director's signature, is amazing. And also there is romance; although I admit one sexual scene lasting for one and a half minute does not make a romantic film, it was never intended for that purpose. Rather, it serves as an enrichment of already brilliant story and characters. Acting is superb, I think this is Swarzenegger's most convincing performance. Linda Hamilton and Michael Biehn are excellent, too. Music is so good it makes my skin crawl. The Terminator is one of only three movies which I consider nearly perfect.
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42 of 52 people found the following review helpful
on October 10, 2001
Format: DVD
James Carmeron's Terminator has been given a state-of-the-art 5.1 stereo remix and also a fantastic hi-definition video transfer following the release of Terminator 2 (Ultimate Edition). This DVD contains over 2.5 hours of bonus material, i.e. documentaries, "terminated" scenes complete with commentary, photo galleries, the script and much more. The first thing you will notice when playing the movie is the superb video and sound quality...All of the sounds have been remixed, some deleted even. Gun shots and explosions now have more atmosphere and depth, and no longer sound like those cheap sound effects from the 1980's. Everything, including the music sounds state-of-the-art. You will not be disappointed unless you like movies to stay true to their original mixing. But I just have to say that this was a job well done....and maybe even one of the best quality DVD movies in my whole collection. If you pick this movie up make sure to pick up its sequel Terminator 2 (Ultimate Edition).
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15 of 17 people found the following review helpful
on August 4, 2004
Format: DVD
I know most people proclaim Terminator 2 as the best of the trilogy.....however, my favorte will always be this little masterpiece for a couple of simple reasons:

1. James Cameron got his continuity right. The basic theme in the movie is: you cannot change the future, you can only hope to survive it. Everything someone does to alter the future will in turn, cause these events to occur. He carried this theme over to T2, but only halfway. But that's something I'll get into when I review that movie.

2. Whereas T2 and T3 were 'sci-fi/action' movies, the original Terminator was straight up 'sci-fi/horror'. The atmosphere in this movie is phenomenal and conveys the feeling of impending doom more clearly than the sequals.

In T2 when the T-1000 is chasing after the T-800/John Conner/Sarah Conner, you're thinking, "Oh, man...they better run or they're screwed. I hope we get to see the two terminators fight again. That was sweet." But when the T-800 is stalking Sarah Conner through the police station in the original Terminator, we feel only despair for the characters. Never before has a man been so convincing as a machine. So cold and lifeless, yet moving with an uncontrollable desire to destroy anything that moves. That single sequence in Terminator was far unsettling and dramatic than anything I saw in the sequals.

In T3 when the T-800 gets his head knocked off and is only hanging by a few cables, we're thinking, "Oh, wow...she took his head off." or, "Hey, that's photo-realistic." But remember the bathroom scene in the original? Remember how freakin' scary that was? A damp, barely lit, grungy bathroom in a parking garage....a giant of a man stoicly slicing open his arm and PULLING OUT HIS OWN EYE. Yeah, even though the animatronic Arnold head looked extremely fake, the atmosphere was extremely creepy. I'll take style over photorealistic CGI any day.

I think what's so great about this movie is how you're slowly revealed the true form of the Terminator. Piece by piece he loses a chunk here, a chunk there. You know he's a machine with flesh over his endo-skeleton, but the full force of this implication isn't really felt until you see the machine without the flesh emerge from burning wreckage. I find the scene where the endo-skeleton is lurching very quickly toward the door as Sarah is struggling to close it far more terrifying than the whole Terminator apocalypse scenes in the sequals. But then again, those are action movies. This original is a true sci-fi masterpiece and is probably the best sci-fi/horror film in existence second only to maby the original Alien.
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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful
on January 26, 2008
Format: Blu-rayVerified Purchase
I wasn't sure what to expect with a blu ray movie from the early 80s and the reviews on this one I've read have been mixed. Would the picture be any better? Would there be improvement over DVD? I was pleasantly surprised when I watched the blu ray. True some of the sequences are still grainy (partially intentional on the part of the filmakers) but I could absolutely see an improvement over the DVD version. Though most of the movie takes place at night, I was able to see much more detail than I had before (which is saying alot because I'm a huge Terminator fan!) I would have much preferred the film be cleaned up and spruced up more, but my conclusion is that the blu ray is definitely better than the DVDs. My only real disappointment with the disc were the special features. Aren't blu rays supposed to have this massive storage capacity and room for hours upon hours of additional material??? So why are we left with nothing new on The Terminator?? Same deleted scenes, same interview with Arnold and Jim Cameron, and the same special effects featurette as the special edition DVD. Bummer.......
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36 of 45 people found the following review helpful
on January 16, 2000
Format: DVD
I am one of the biggest fans of this movie (saw it many times in the theatre when it was released, bought the soundtrack on LP, have almost everything about it), and it IS one of the BEST Sci-Fi movies ever made - especially for its small budget. That said, this is one of the worst DVDs I've seen. The only special feature you get is ONE original trailer. No "Making Of" (which I have the VHS version of), No commentary tracks (come on James Cameron! Get with it! I love your movies and would love to hear your comments!), not even any other language or subtitle tracks - nothing spectacular on this DVD at all. I'm personally glad I have it because I'm a true collector of everything Terminator, but I can't recommend it for people who want more out of it. There really isn't much here in the DVD package - a waste of all that storage space.
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