Metascore
84

Universal acclaim - based on 11 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 10 out of 11
  2. Negative: 0 out of 11
Watch On
  1. Director James Cameron and producer Gale Anne Hurd (both of whom co-wrote the script) demonstrate their storytelling virtuosity.
  2. 70
    Schwarzenegger is presented as a lumbering slab of dumb, destructive strength--the image is more geological than human--and Cameron plays his crushing weightiness against the strangely light, almost graceful violence of the gunplay directed against him. The results have the air of a demented ballet.
  3. The movie's scares are intense, but the notion that the Terminator would move on to politics is even more frightening.
  4. Reviewed by: Mark Dinning
    90
    A tense, slickly executed thriller.
  5. Reviewed by: Glenn Kenny
    91
    Kineticism and suspense, combined with strongly conceived characters....Made Cameron a talent to watch. [13 Jan 1995, p. 67]
  6. Reviewed by: Staff (Not Credited)
    88
    A model of economic storytelling....It raised the bar for movie action to a bionic level. [1 Dec 2003, p.13]
  7. An efficient, cold-blooded sci-fi splatter movie that never makes the mistake of forgetting that on some level it is deeply ridiculous.
  8. Reviewed by: Richard Corliss
    90
    Plenty of tech-noir savvy to keep infidels and action fans satisfied.[26 Nov 1984, p. 105]
  9. Reviewed by: Staff (Not Credited)
    80
    An amazingly effective picture that becomes doubly impressive when one considers its small budget.
  10. Reviewed by: Staff (Not Credited)
    100
    A blazing, cinematic comic book, full of virtuoso moviemaking, terrific momentum, solid performances and a compelling story.
User Score
8.0

Generally favorable reviews- based on 336 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 43 out of 47
  2. Negative: 3 out of 47
  1. Sep 17, 2011
    8
    "The Terminator" is a loud,noisy action "block bluster"; pretty good CGI (considering it was 1984), solid acting from Mr. governor, a dull but"The Terminator" is a loud,noisy action "block bluster"; pretty good CGI (considering it was 1984), solid acting from Mr. governor, a dull but appealing story. Expect fun. Full Review »
  2. Aug 17, 2011
    9
    One of the best movies I ever seen
  3. JakeH
    Jun 19, 2008
    10
    This movie was down right action packed. Arnold Schwartezennager rules!!