In the first two terminator films there is a main plot point. The main idea is that a woman called Sarah Conner is to give birth to a son called John Conner. John will lead humanity in a war against machines that have destroyed and taken over the world. The first film has a plot that is like this. At the start we see two men appear naked from a mysterious light that shoots out electricity as it forms. The first one is the terminator which has been ordered to kill Sarah Conner so John Conner can never be born and lead the fight against the machines. The second man is Kyle Reese, who was ordered by John Conner in the future to protect Sarah and ensure he will be born in the future. The two quickly grab clothes and already have started a persecution for both of them. The terminator killed three people to get the clothes while Kyle stole his from a homeless man causing the police to chase after him. Sarah is starting her day unaware of the events that will unfold. She is seen at work where she is unappreciated, and then she goes home to her friend Ginger where they plan a night on the town. The terminator and Kyle both tear out a phone page which has several Sarah Connors. The terminator simply visits the Sarah’s on the page and kills them because he does not know what they look like. Kyle has a picture however and is able to find her and save her from death. Kyle then informs Sarah of what will happen in the future. Initially she believes him crazy and the police do too because he has no evidence. Later after the terminator kills all the people in a police station she believes him and they go to a hotel where they have sex. The terminator later catches to them but Kyle uses a pipe bomb to kill it, but Kyle is killed in the process. Sarah then manages to crush it with a press at the last minute. Months later we see Sarah pregnant with John and we see Sarah is preparing for the dark future that is coming.
The second film has a plot like this. We see two men appear from a ball of light with electricity shooting out. One is the terminator we saw from the previous film. The other known as the t 1000 has an average looking body. The second one then changes to a regular human look. The terminator heads to a biker club where he gets clothes, a motorcycle and a shotgun. The two terminators head to find John. The t 1000 arrives first and tries to kill John, but the terminator appears and saves him. The two then manage to escape and the terminator informs John that he is assigned to protect and obey him. An incident occurs where the terminator nearly kills a person which ends with John making the terminator swear not to kill anyone. They head out to rescue Sarah Conner who has been trapped in a mental facility for years since she tried to blow up a factory. Sarah manages to escape on her own, but the staff is about to recapture her when the terminator saves her. The three then run from the t 1000 that was at the hospital and escape him. The three then fill each other in and head to a storage facility where Sarah stocked up for a war. Sarah learns the man responsible for the war is Miles Dyson and she heads to kill him. She is about to kill him when John stops her from doing the deed. The three then inform Miles what will happen and he agrees to stop and destroy his research. They head to the building where he works and start destroying it. The police come and try to stop them from doing it mortally wounding Miles in the process. He blows up the building with his last efforts and destroys everything. The three are forced to run from the scene where they meet the t 1000 again. This leads to a final battle where the terminator destroys the t 1000 at last. The terminator then says he must be destroyed along with the last bits of future technology to stop the war. The terminator then goes into molten steel and is destroyed along with the technology which succeeds in stopping the war in the future forever.
In the two films there are many different symbols in them. When Kyle appears in a ball of light, this can be seen as Kyle being an angel sent to earth. This can also be seen as a reference to when Gabriel comes to inform Mary that she is going to give birth to the son of God, Kyle being Gabriel and Sarah being Mary. When the two have sex which leads to John being born this can be seen as John being the saviour and messiah of mankind since he will lead a fight against the machines and free humanity. Kyle can also be seen as the Holy Ghost. The war in the films is called judgement day and this is a battle between the machines and humanity. In many religions there is reference of the end of the world and a final battle between good and bad. The film also makes reference to the devil. The T 1000 is supposed to be the devil because in the bible the number 1000 is referenced together with 1000 and the devil had the ability to shape shift. The 1000 is a possible reference to the 1000 years the devil had reign. The terminator in the second film could possibly be seen as Christ for two reasons. One is he sacrificed his life for humanity like Christ did. The second one is when the terminator is stabbed at the beginning; it is in the chest in the spot where Christ was stabbed. An element seen with Sarah is that she is a prophet because she can see the future. Sarah sees the future where there was a massive war and billions died. She tries to get people to believe her and join her but no one listens to her like many prophets. Another element is when the t 1000 impales the terminator with a rod. It appears the terminator is dead but he resurrects himself. This can be seen as an element of rebirth which is common in many religions. It can also be seen as a symbol of Christ when he resurrected himself from the dead. Another symbol is when the T 1000 falls into the molten steel; this can be seen as a reference to Revelation 19:20 where it says the devil will be thrown into a lake of fire.
Religion is not show in a good, neutral or bad way at all in the films. The topic of religion is not mentioned at all in the film despite the undertones present. The film only uses references, symbols, elements and themes for the religion part. The film does a very effective job of having religion undertones without it jumping out. The film producers seem to have been aware of the religious ideas that the film was based on so they altered it to make the undertone more subtle and more Hollywood action film like. The way that they did a reference to the resurrection of Christ with the terminator was so subtle the first time I saw it I didn’t even see the reference. They also knew little known facts about the devil and placed it into the t 1000. The way they put the 1000 in to reference the devil reigning for 1000 years was very subtle. They likely thought it would mislead viewers into thinking the 1000 was just a name and nothing else. They also put in the fact that the devil can shift shape forms to deceive which is what the t 1000 does in the film. Overall the film does a very effective job of having religion undertones and placed the facts in very well. In conclusion, the first two terminator films have religion in them. It is put in subtlety and is well made. The film put in many references, symbols and elements found in Christianity and also put in some common themes found in many religions. I found the film did a very decent job with the facts. That is why the first two terminator films have religious themes in them in my opinion.