One of the most innovative and influential science fiction action movies of all time is returning to theaters next week in a newly remastered 3D version– James Cameron‘s ‘Terminator 2: Judgement Day’. When it was originally released in 1991, it was the first film to utilize the brand new CGI effect of morphing, but even beyond that, it was an explosive revelation. There have been additional ‘Terminator’ films (plus a TV series), but none have quite managed to mesmerize audiences the way this sequel did when it was released.
Some may fear that Cameron might, like George Lucas, go a little buck wild with the modern advances in computer technology, but rest assured, Cameron’s changes are mostly to clean up the picture quality and to correct mistakes.
“George Lucas I think he constantly had new ideas and wanted to punch up those films [Star Wars]. I felt I’ve changed as an artist, why would I want to second guess myself and what I was thinking back then in ’91. I actually think the movie stands. I didn’t feel a compelling need to change anything editing-wise, other than to just get it to the highest possible standard of color and picture and everything else. We didn’t change it, except for one thing.”
That one thing?
The change Cameron is referring to are the flying windshields that pop off the semi truck chasing after Edward Furlong’s John Connor. This is a continuity problem, as the windshield is later shown intact then shattered and is something that has irked Cameron for all these years.
Cameron’s statement implies that the windshield fix was the only alteration made, which isn’t accurate. Over the years, fans have mocked the fact that during certain action sequences, particularly the motorcycle chase scene, it’s obvious that the individuals shown are not Arnold Schwarzenegger and Edward Furlong but stunt people, including a grown man as John Connor. Thanks to CGI trickery, the faces of the actual stars are superimposed over those of the stunt people.
This one is just a given and an opportunity any director would take advantage of, improving the visual quality– basically just cleaning things up. The lightening is also to account for the fact that 3D glasses are dark, so by making the picture brighter, what theater audiences will see basically looks “normal” with the darkened lenses.
In a slip up that probably should have resulted in ‘Terminator 2’ getting an X-rating, when Robert Patrick’s T-1000 arrives in the present, completely naked (just as Arnie’s T-800 had) there is a shot where Patrick’s testicles are visible for a moment. Apparently, it slipped by everyone except eagle-eyed viewers who watched the film repeatedly. In a minor tweak, Cameron obscured Patrick’s ball sack with a CGI piece of concrete.
Now comes the question: Is it worth it? The film is a classic and giving Cameron a chance to fix some mistakes and clean the film up seems fair. But in 1991, it’s doubtful any filmmakers, including Cameron himself, had any idea that 3D movies– considered a short-lived fad from the 1950s– would ever make a comeback, much less the standard for every action movie and even some non-action movies. ‘T2’ was meant to be shown in 2D and from those who have already seen the 3D version, that particular feature doesn’t add much because the film simply wasn’t shot in a way to employ it, meaning there aren’t many shots of debris or other objects flying out at the audience.
It would appear the opening sequence and Sarah Connor’s (Linda Hamilton) apocalyptic future vision are the only two scenes where the 3D change is even really noticeable.
But if you are a true fan, ‘Terminator 2: Judgement Day 3D’ will be available for a limited run next week, starting on August 24.
Source: Screen Rant