Description And Comments

The underlying plot of every film in the Terminator catalog is this: At some point in the not-too-distant future, the military builds Skynet, a computer system so smart that it has the ability to learn about new threats and dangers, without being told explicitly what they are. Unfortunately, the system quickly figures out that the biggest threat to world peace is humans themselves. Skynet embarks on a decades-long war against mankind, eradicating most of it. The humans left, led by John Connor, fight back and are about to win when Skynet plays the ace up its sleeve: a robot is sent back in time to kill Connor's mother before he was born, which would alter history and assure Skynet's victory.

The first film in the Terminator franchise, released in 1984, picks up when the robot arrives in the "present," and the entire Terminator film franchise is a set of variations on the battle between time-traveling robotic assassins and members of the Connor clan. Its other notable characteristics are exceptional special effects, non-stop action and a homicidal robot played by pre-gubernatorial Arnold Schwarzenegger.

Universal's theme park adaptation is no exception, and combines live actors on multiple stages, walls of audio-animatronics and 3-D film technology into a fifteen-minute Cliffs Notes version of the franchise's second film.

The action unfolds on three walls of a 700-person theater, during which the live actors and 3-D film villains blend almost seamlessly into a pitched battle for the fate of mankind. Some of the special effects and computer-generated animation are outdated, and Arnold telling young John Connor to "bust a move" could be slightly more dated only if one of them was wearing a Backstreet Boys sweater, too. But overall the show works because of the fast pace, the sheer size of the presentation, and timeless appeal of shiny robots. Even shiny robots of death.

Touring Tips

Terminator 2: 3-D has been eclipsed somewhat by newer attractions like Hollywood Rip Ride Rockit, The Simpsons Ride, and Despicable Me. We suggest that you save Terminator and other theater presentations until you've experienced all the rides. Expect to wait less than 30 minutes.

Families with young children should know that the violence characteristic of the Terminator movies is present during the stage show, with plenty of shooting and explosion, but relatively little blood and guts.

Special Comments

The nation's best theme park theater attraction; very intense for some preschoolers and grade-school

Special Needs

Stationary seating is available for those who need it. Parental discretion is advised.

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Touring Plans with Terminator 2: 3-D

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