Our story begins in a post apocalyptic world of the future. The year is 2029, where large machines with tank tracks roll over human skulls. We learn that the machines rose from the ashes of the nuclear fire. Their war to exterminate mankind had raged for decades, but the final battle would not be fought in the future, it would be fought here, in our present…tonight, in 1984.
The scene changes to Griffith Park, which is located in Kah-lee-fowniah (pronounced like California). A man picking up the garbage is overcome by an electrical dust devil, causing him to flee from his truck. Next, we see a very large and very naked man crouched in a track starting position. The man slowly rises, walks over to three punks messing around in the park and demands their clothing. Being punks, they pull out their knives and end up giving up their clothes the hard way. One guy has his heart torn out, the other gets beat down and one guy lives. This menacing power was no man; he was seven-time Mr. Olympia, Arnold Schwarzenegger.
Meanwhile, in L.A.’s garment district, another man was being beamed to Earth. This man was much smaller, but equally naked. This mystery man quickly draws the attention of police after depants-ing some poor wino in an alley. The mystery man slips away and snags one of the cop’s shotguns as he flees. Both big man and little man head to the phone book to look up a woman named Sarah Conner.
Scene change. We see a young woman, who we later discover is one of many Sarah Connors, but this is THE Sarah Conner. She rides her Honda Elite 150 scooter, to her job at Big Jeff’s. Sarah is your all-American girl who is just trying to get by.
Change scene again. We see the big man decked out in his freshly stolen new wave gear he just murdered for. No 1984 outfit would be complete without studded leather gloves and shoulder chains. He punches out the window of a station wagon and jumpstarts that baby in less than 8 seconds. He is a wrecking machine, literally, a machine. Our story bounces back and forth from the star of Pumping Iron to loveable Sarah Conner and the terrible shift she is having slogging food to diners’ tables. Very soon, their two worlds are going to collide.
Mystery man Arnold then goes to the Alamo, a gun shop run by Murray Futterman from Gremlins. It is inside the Alamo where we hear the first of a long line or Arnold-isms; such as: “twelve gauge auto loader.”
“That’s Italian, you can go pump or auto loader.”
“The 45 long slide with laser sighting.”
“Phase plasma rifle in zee 40 watt range.”
“Uzi 9 millimeter.”
He then tells the clerk he’ll take all of the guns and the clerk decides he may close up early. Ah-nold then pops a live shell into the chamber and cycles the twelve-gauge auto loader. The clerk reminds him “you can’t do that in here” to which the muscles from Brussels replies, “wrong” and pastes the clerk up against the wall.
Our story now becomes a race to see who can get to Sarah Conner first. The big guy locates three Sarah Connor’s in the phone book and methodically hunts them down. The first Sarah to bite it is a 35-year-old mother of two who lives on Doncaster, but this angry muscle man goes to an entirely different address. Instead of 1823 like in the phone book, he goes to 14239, I think James Cameron overlooked that small detail. But, we really begin to see now that this guy is like no mortal man. Even after he went to the wrong street address, he approaches the house, asks the woman if she is Sarah, simply by asking? (Sarah Connor?) Then he pushes the door open and puts six bullets in her suburban mom ass, Alamo style.
Meanwhile, back at Jeff’s Burgers, Sarah’s gum smacking co-worker drags her in front of the television where the name of the murdered homemaker victim is being voiced on the television. Sarah’s coworker says, “your dead honey”. Someone, or something…has murdered Sarah Connor.
Meanwhile, the smaller naked guy hotwires a car and has time to grab a nap before he actually goes looking for Sarah. He is awakened by a flashback of skull crushing machines that shoot beautiful magenta lasers from their superstructures. He snaps out of it and continues his search for the beauty, Sarah Connor.
Sarah gets off work and gets ready for a double date with her slutty, shitty-music-lovin’ roommate. Only right before they go out, Sarah’s date calls and bails because something has “come up”. This works out great because Sarah decides to go it alone, grabbing a bite of pizza and then catching a movie. As she leaves on her scooter, we see that she is being followed by the smaller of the mysterious, nude, time-traveling men.
Meanwhile, media mobs the Los Angeles Police when fears of a serial murderer spread. At that moment, Sarah’s slutty roommate and boyfriend never seem to make it out of the apartment; instead they get down in her bedroom. The lady enjoying coitus interuptus while donning her foam headphones while the boyfriend controls the massive tape cassette player.
As all of this is unraveling, Sarah is about to dig in to some pie of her own. Pizza pie, deep dish. She see’s on the television that another Sarah Connor has been murdered and decides to call her roommate slut and warn her. She slides into Technoir, a totally 80’s club complete with skinny ties, sleeveless jackets and people dancing like Molly Ringwald.
Since Arnold is looking for Sarah, he goes to the real Sarah’s apartment but inadvertently finds Walkman girl and boyfriend instead. Boyfriend is no match for the former governor and is thrown around the bedroom like a ragdoll. Sarah’s roommate is oblivious to the bedroom assault since after loving her man, she goes to make a sandwich, with her headphones on.
Guess what happens next. Conan destroys her with the .45. He puts 6 rounds into her ratted out hairdo, then coldly steps on those foamy headphones. This cold blooded, psychotic spins around when the phone rings, but holds the trigger, sparing the answering machine. Sarah leaves a message for her now deceased roommate, telling her where she lives.
Arnold then appears to time travel to Technoir, following the directions given by Sarah on the answering machine. He peacocks into Technoir with a steely gaze. He surveys about 20 people in the club, who are either clones, or John Cameron could only afford 20 more extras, the same person was everywhere. “Hey look, there’s the guy with the mullet at the bar, no, he’s on the dance floor. Hey, that dancing blonde chick is cute. Wait, she’s seated behind Sarah Connor!”
Arnie walks up and draws a bead on Sarah with his 45. Just in the nick of time, the smaller dude pops out with the gauge he jacked from the police! A fantastic volley of rounds ensues and Arnold gets blown out the front window. Her rescuer says, “come with me if you want to live.” Just then she see’s big dude getting up, almost unscathed. What?!? How can this be?” she thinks. The two flee as the mutant pursues them and Sarah’s rescuer shotguns a car to set the big man on fire. He rises with a Hanz and Franz hair melt that is still smoking. Sarah and her dude pull into a safe place after he gives her the rules, don’t speak unless I tell you, don’t move unless I tell you.
He then tells her he is Sgt. Kyle Reese sent to protect her. She thinks its a mistake and then he lets the time travel cat out of the bag. She saw the man get up but Reese explains that was no man…
Alright listen, the Terminator is an infiltration unit; part man part machine, underneath its a hyper alloy combat chassis, microprocessor controlled, fully armored, very tough, but outside its living human tissue, flesh, skin, hair blood, grown for the cyborgs.
LOOK SANCHO, I don’t know what you want…(Bill exclaims)!
Pay attention! Ok, so the deal is, big dude is a Terminator killer robot and Reese was sent back in time from the future, to protect Sarah Connor from the Terminator…and to bang her.
You see Sarah Connor is to beget John Connor, leader of the future machine fighters.
Sarah and Reese are caught by the cops and get taken to jail. Reese tells the police psychologist about Skynet and that he’ll find her that’s what he does, that’s all he does. The police think Reese is a nut, so they put Sarah down for a nap on the couch and smoke some more cigarettes.
The Terminator comes looking for Sarah and when he’s told he’ll have to wait by the cop at the front desk; he crashes into the department and goes on a rampage.
This perfect killing machine, not so perfectly allows Sarah and Reese to escape, again…but he does smoke a bunch of well-armed cops.
Reese and Sarah hole up in a dumpy motel, where they make sweet love and Sarah takes Reeses Pieces. The Terminator high tales it to Sarah’s mom’s place in Big Bear only to have to ride all the way back to L.A. Just a quick turnaround kill trip.
After showing Reese how to lay pipe, he returns the favor by showing Sarah how to make pipe bombs out of Karo syrup and chemicals he scored at the store. The two escape yet again when they shoot it out of their motel room with the cyborg.
Numerous chase scenes ensue leading up to the showdown after Reese and Sarah have pipe bombed the skin off the Terminator, exposing is metal skeleton and spooky red eyes. A very Jason and the Argonauts looking CGI Terminator pursues them, into a factory. Reese dies from his injures and Sarah compresses the killing machine in a compacting machine.
The final scene of the film finds Sarah filling up with gas. A young Mexican boy who speaks better English than he speaks Spanish takes the photo Reese described to her earlier. The boy then says tells her “there is a storm coming”. Sarah replies, “I know”.