- Alternative Character Interpretation: Does Amelia really love Victor, or is she just reeling from a painful breakup, and projecting admirable qualities onto him because she's eager to love someone again? As a transplanted foreigner, Victor struggles with English for most of the movie, and can't always express his thoughts and feelings as articulately as he might want to; with that in mind, it's easy to imagine that Amelia just assumes what she wants to assume about him, and Victor isn't able to correct her.
- Applicability: It's a movie about a battle of wills between an honest, hard-working man from a foreign country in the throes of political unrest, and the no-nonsense government employee who tries to keep him out of the United States in the name of "law and order". Even if Victor isn't exactly an immigrant (he just wants to get a famous jazz musician's autograph), and Frank Dixon isn't exactly a xenophobic politician (he's just an Obstructive Bureaucrat who runs an airport), there's a lot of social subtext that can be read into the story.
- Heartwarming in Hindsight: Considering the infamous Fandom Rivalry between Star Wars and Star Trek, there's something undeniably sweet about watching Lieutenant Uhura and Cassian Andor get married. Long live the Star Alliance!
- Hilarious in Hindsight: In a sort of reverse Casting Gag, the character of "Trekkie" Delores Torres is played by Zoe Saldana who within a few years would be cast in the Star Trek franchise (as Uhura, not Yeoman Rand). And then, spinning on a few more years, Diego Luna - the actor so adorkably geeking about discovering the sci-fi nerdom of the girl of his dreams - would be cast as the male lead in Rogue One, the first "anthology film" other Mega Sci-Fi franchise, Star Wars (and being a shameless Star Wars Promoted Fanboy about it too). Plus, in 2014, Zaldana and Luna would once again play each other's love interest in The Book of Life.
- Tear Jerker: Victor learning about the war from a news report. He can tell from the footage that something very bad is happening in his country, but since he doesn't speak English he can't get any context for the images, and desperately races around the airport trying to find a report he can understand.
- Values Resonance: It was seen at the time as a forgettable Spielberg film about a fantastic situation. Come The New '10s when immigration and refugees displaced from their lands is a key political issue again, as is the responsibility of governments and administrators to them, this film feels ahead of its time.
YMMV / The Terminal