The Terminator

Question: I know it's not important because the movie would be very short and boring, but there's something I've always wondered. What would have happened to the Terminator had he actually managed to kill Sarah Conner?

The_Iceman

Chosen answer: Since terminators cannot self-terminate, only one very likely possibility comes to mind: it would have hidden itself away somewhere known to have remained undisturbed in the years between the termination of Sarah Connor and the start of the war, at which point it would rejoin the war effort.

Phixius

Question: I've always wondered, what's the significance of the kid pointing a wooden gun and making 'pew pew' noises at Reese when he enters the human hideout? Is it meant to be purely a bit of comical play between the two, or a subtle inference that mankind will never be able to abolish its inherent desire to destroy itself, even in the face of total extinction?

Chosen answer: Its simply a child being a child and playing, but more than anything, showing the innocence of the children that inspite of the near death of the human race all around them, there's still time to play and be... human.

GalahadFairlight

Question: When Vukovic and Traxler are watching Silberman question Reese, Vukovic mentions a guy they brought in who apparently burned something and did something else I couldn't quite hear. What's he actually talking about?

Chosen answer: The quote: "He had this guy in here last week who set his Afghan [a breed of dog] on fire. Screwed it first, then set it on..." [and here Traxler interrupts him].

Phil C.

Question: Why is the Terminator able to talk when he looks like a human but doesn't talk when he doesn't have the living tissue on?

EmilBlonsky

Chosen answer: It's not that he could not talk, but perhaps he just had nothing to say. Once his skin burns off, he was still in pursuit mode to terminate his target. Before the skin burned off and he was chasing them in that scene, he wasn't saying anything either. And it's also logical to say that the wreck and gas tanker exploding, which caused his skin to burn off, likely could have damages internal components of the terminator by impact force as well as the extreme heat. So him not talking was either he didn't have anything to say, his voice generator was broken, or both.

Quantom X

Question: I've always wondered this even as a kid. I never read any of the novels associated with the movies so it might have been addressed there. If a computer system became self aware and a computer system is what launched all the nukes, then what created the first Terminator? I get how they're all made on an assembly line but someone or something had to make the machines and equipment that makes the Terminators.

Robert Waner

Chosen answer: Skynet being an artificial intelligence, it could take control of existing machines to repurpose them. It doesn't become self aware until 1997, by which point robotic technology would be much more advanced than in 1984 (and it had already been somewhat self-reliant before that point, so presumably a degree of military fabrication was already set up to be controlled automatically). With its vastly accelerated rate of development and intelligence, it could use existing factories to create basic machines, use those to retool and create more complicated machines, etc. From what Kyle says the ultra-realistic Terminator model we see here is a relatively new development (he comes from 2029) so Skynet has had about 30 years to set up a series of self-improving machines and its own murderous infrastructure.

Jon Sandys

Question: When John Connor sends Kyle Reese back in time to protect his mother, Reese then becomes Connor's father, how could John Connor be the same person he is if a different man's sperm produced him?

dan coakley..

Chosen answer: The whole thing's a paradox, which, as time travel doesn't exist, we have no way to determine how it would work out in reality, and thus any movie dealing with time travel can make up its own rules. Effectively an infinite loop has been set up - Sarah gives birth to John, John grows up, meets Kyle, sends Kyle back to meet Sarah, they make love, Sarah gives birth to John and so on and so on. There may have been an original father to John at the beginning, but he was supplanted in the loop by Kyle and thus, in the timeline the film presents, the John who sent Kyle back is the one fathered by Kyle himself. Alternatively, maybe John Connor wasn't the original resistance leader, that some other leader sent Kyle back the first time, leading to the birth of John Connor, who then became the resistance leader instead; thus Kyle has always been John's father. This is the nature of a paradox, that there are things about the situation that don't necessarily seem to fit together, but they somehow come about anyway. The detail can be debated ad infinitum, but no concrete conclusion can be drawn, because that's just how this works.

Tailkinker

Question: Who was John Connor's father before he sent Kyle Reese back in time to protect his mother?

dan coakley..

Chosen answer: Kyle was. It's a paradox, an infinite loop; Kyle goes back, fathers a son who later meets the younger Kyle and sends him back to father a son who later meets the younger Kyle... etc. etc. There are no hard and fast rules governing this sort of thing, so there doesn't necessarily have to have been an original father who kicked the whole thing off before being supplanted by Kyle. Or maybe there was. Or maybe there was originally a different resistance leader who sent Kyle back, leading to the birth of John who became resistance leader instead. This sort of thing can be debated until the cows come home, but ultimately the only answer is "it's a paradox".

Tailkinker

Question: Some people think Ginger is Sarah's sister, but I have always thought she was just her close friend and roommate. Who's right?

Gavin Jackson

Chosen answer: No mention is made of her being Sarah's sister. If she was, at some point in the other films, it would have been mentioned.

Captain Defenestrator

Question: How did the Terminator manage to find a hotel room already equipped with surgical tools and bandages? Doesn't seem like he set it up with supplies earlier since the first we see is him breaking in via the fire escape.

Chosen answer: He isn't breaking in via the fire escape, hes just using it as a means of coming and going without being seen by the hotel staff, so at any point during the movie, he could have equipped himself with those tools. It is not necessary for a movie to show every intervening action onscreen.

GalahadFairlight

Question: If Skynet is so worried about its Terminators "doing too much thinking" then why not remove from them the 'read-and-write' learning capabilities and simply set them to 'read-only' at all times?

Socks1000

Chosen answer: Because the gathering of new information is still a key part to what they do. There has to be a write setting, even a restricted one, in order for the Terminators to assimilate new information that can assist them in their missions - possible target locations, voiceprints, even new mission parameters could not be uploaded without the ability to write to their CPU. Skynet can (and does) set restrictions on the Terminators' learning abilities, but, without those abilities, their effectiveness would be compromised.

Tailkinker

Question: Is it usual for gun store clerks to leave ammunition and bullets on the counter where anyone can pick them up and load them into a gun?

Socks1000

Chosen answer: No, it's not, but not every gun shop owner is reputable or responsible.

wizard_of_gore

Question: Exactly why did The Terminator raid the police station and kill all those cops? Wouldn't it have been more prudent to wait until Sarah was released, make sure she was unprotected and then kill her?

TheContentAtHeart

Chosen answer: From his point of view, she was already unprotected. At least, unprotected enough for him to make an attempt on her life. The police can't stop him and concerns for his own safety do not enter his calculations. But he was programmed with one goal in mind: Kill Sarah Connor. When he sees an opportunity to do so, he takes it. He knew where she was. To wait would be to risk losing that information.

Garlonuss

Question: At the beginning, why did the cops chase after Reese, what was their reason?

TheContentAtHeart

Chosen answer: He'd just mugged somebody in the alley for their trousers.

Tailkinker

Question: Towards the end of the film, why does Reese switch on all those machines? He says something about "cover, so it can't track us." What does he mean by this?

TheContentAtHeart

Chosen answer: It creates more heat, more noise and more motion in the area. It makes it harder to pick out two people running around, either by sight (machines blocking view), heat sensors (from the heat of the machinery) or listening out (the machines are loud).

Gary O'Reilly

Question: Why did/does Skynet launch a nuclear attack against humanity? What were its reasons? I'm just a bit confused because in both movies they give conflicted answers.

MovieBuff09

Chosen answer: It was a defensive move, basically. As Skynet developed and increased in complexity, it ultimately achieved sentience and became self-aware. The humans tried to pull the plug, effectively trying to kill the new intelligence and Skynet fought back, utilising the nuclear arsenal to attempt to eradicate those who would shut it down.

Tailkinker

Question: When Kyle and Sarah change places in the pickup truck, if you play it in slow motion you can see Kyle's face transitioning to that of a stuntman. How did they manage to do that back in 1984? And more importantly, since they were driving straight ahead, why?

Chosen answer: As for the transformation it appears to be an optical thing. It appears that Kyle was driving and doing the switch. the reason for the switch is so Kyle can toss out the pipe bombs. notice that Sara holds one up and Kyle and her then switch places.

James Rowell

Question: How did Reese know that Sarah was at the Tech-Noir bar. Is there a deleted scene with Reese where he finds out where she is or was it luck.

Chosen answer: It's all in the film - Reese tails Sarah from the moment that she leaves her apartment. He's waiting outside the bar that she's in when she sees the news report and follows her down the road when she leaves - she sees him and gets scared, which is when she ducks into Tech-Noir. He sees her go in, then walks past, before turning back and entering himself.

Tailkinker

Question: Why are they always naked when returning from the future?

Chosen answer: Reese explains that only living things can come through the portal. This is why they can't bring any equipment, including clothing. The Terminator can come because it's covered in living skin.

Phoenix

Question: When Reese hot wires the car what's the name of the song that starts playing?

Chosen answer: When they are in the car park? If that's the case, it's just called Tunnel Chase - written specifically for the film. It is located on the official soundtrack.

Sam Johnson

Question: When the Terminator is repairing himself his right eye is damaged yet when they show him in the mirror cutting it out it looks like it's his left eye that's damaged (judging from what the reflection we see would entail). Is this a legitimate mistake or am I mixing things up here?

Chosen answer: No, his left eye is damaged the entire time. Watch carefully; it never switches to his right.

Deidra Goins

Question: After the T-800's infamous invasion of the police station, Reese and Sarah escape and the T-800 is unable to catch them. Reese and Sarah then hide in a tunnel overnight. The next time we see the T-800 is the following day, in his hideout scanning Sarah's address book. What has the T-800 been doing this whole time?

Deidra Goins

Chosen answer: He lost track of Sarah, so he went to look for her mother in order to find out the location of Sarah.

Kirill Ostapenko

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Quotes

Kyle Reese: Listen! And understand. That Terminator is out there! It can't be bargained with, can't be reasoned with! It doesn't feel pity or remorse or fear, and it absolutely will not stop. EVER! Until you are dead!

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Mistakes

When the Terminator breaks into the police station, he has an auto-shotgun in his left hand, and a machine gun in his right. Before he kills the power in the building, he comes to the end of a hall, points his shotgun through a doorway, and shoots. A machine gun sound is used for the blast, instead of a shotgun sound.

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Trivia

Arnold only has 16 lines.

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