One of the neat things about comparing the first two movies is that they had opposing morals. One of the messages of the first movie seemed to be that the future is unchangeable -- everything that everyone did to try to change the future ended up being an essential link in the chain of events that led to the future that everyone (well, everything, I suppose, since it was basically the robots that were trying to change things) was trying to change.
At the end of the second movie, though, the exact opposite turns out to be true: it turns out that if you really, really want to change the future, and if you have enough guns and explosives, then you can go ahead and change it. Why not? And at the end of the movie SkyNet is toast, there isn't going to be a future dominated by assassin robots (waaah!), etc.
So that's all well and good, but it doesn't really leave anywhere for a third movie to go, because the plot that's been used in the first two movies (a robot teleports back into the past to kill someone responsible for the salvation of mankind from the robots, someone or something else teleports back to save that person, and wacky hijinx follow) no longer works, because the future is no longer filled with killer robots! (Again, waaah.).
So what do you do in a third movie? Well, I think it has to center on John Conner. Here's a kid (but a kid no longer -- I figure in movie 3 he has to be in his late teens or somewhere in his twenties) who was raised to be the saviour of mankind, and is furnished with incontrovertable proof that he is supposed to be the saviour of mankind. But! At the end of Movie #2, it turns out that that job no longer exists, and all the proof of it has been destroyed! Which is a good thing, of course. But where does young John Conner go from there?
Well, I gotta figure he goes kinda nutty. He has all these skills related to saving the world but he no longer has a use for them. Maybe he is kind of jumpy, maybe he has an unusual aversion to technology (or maybe not; he got along pretty good with Arnold in movie #2), maybe he overreacts to situations where he feels threatened. Anyway, he's clearly not well-adjusted for survival in today's societs. Maybe he gets some flashes of what things would have been like in the alternative future he helped to prevent, and that just drives him nuttier, and it's not totally clear whether he's seeing accurate 'memories' from the alternative future or if they're just projections made up by his overstressed brane, you dig?
So it's all about exploring the dark psyche of this man who by rights should be saviour of the world and stuff, with no explosions or anything unless they're in his imagination and are (of course) integral to the plot. I figure we've either got to go with a really low-budget independent treatment, say from Billy Bob Thornton, or perhaps a high-budget independent jobbie a la Terry Gilliam; either one would work pretty well.
What do you think?