As sequels go, the wait until 1991 for a follow-up to James Cameron's 1984 film "The Terminator" was a long one. An incredible hype machine built up around the release, and for once audiences were not left disappointed with a sci-fi action flick that delivers the relentless excitement it promised.
At its most basic, "T2" is a big budget remake of the original film - a chase movie with Sarah Connor (Hamilton) being pursued by a Terminator sent back in time to kill both her and her son, who will lead the rebellion against Skynet. The neat twist is that Connor's son, John (Furlong), has sent back a re-programmed friendly T-800 terminator (Schwarzenegger) from the future, to stop the evil T-1000 terminator (Patrick) from killing the young John and his mother.
The other key difference in this sequel is that Arnie's no longer playing the bad terminator. He's now T-800 - the lumbering underdog to the far cooler and more deadly liquid metal shape-shifting T-1000.
With a massive budget at his disposal, writer/director James Cameron exploited this battle of the cyborgs to the max with a new standard of special effects, but he didn't swamp the film with them. They enhance the movie by introducing dangerous threats to the survival of the heroes, while retaining the all-important physical essence of the fear of the chase that made the first film so exciting. Five stars all round.
Terminator 2: Judgment Day is now available on DVD.