For me, this is one of those films that 'shifted' the goal-posts in terms of what you could and couldn't do in cinematic terms. James Cameron is one of those film-makers who, seemingly with every movie he makes is constantly pushing the bar out ahead of everybody else and leaving them scrambling to catch up with him. This film though, had it all. Action, suspense a slight nod to the horror genre, cutting-edge (for the time) special effects and a very cool story. Time travelling robot sent back in time to answer that age old question... 'If I go back in time and kill my Mother, will future me cease to exist?' Of course, the difference here, is that '...future me...' (old John Connor) is attempting to save his Mother from being killed in the past in order that he doesn't cease to exist.
Michael Biehn is brilliant as the future soldier Kyle Reese and Linda Hamilton is equally good as the initially disbelieving Sarah Connor, who quickly realises as the bodies begin to pile up around her, that she has to fight for her own (as well all of our) future. But its Arnie, who steals the show as the unstoppable Model 101 T-800.
This is one of those films that captured the imagination of an entire generation and hit just when home video was starting to become a big thing. I, like many of my peers saw this for the first time on VHS, but it changed my world and got me thinking of writing stories that had depth and characterisation as well as outlandish aliens and spacecraft. whatever I imagined, it suddenly seemed as if it could be transferred to the big screen.
When I write, I don't do so with the goal in mind that it will eventually become a film, but I do visualise scenes in my own head cinematically and then try to replicate that sense of scope and dimension on the page.
You'll have to let me know, how successful I am at that.