Friday, August 3, 2012

Freaky Friday: Aliens

Having now seen all the films in the original Alien trilogy, I can say with utmost certainty number 2, Aliens, is my favorite. Fifty-seven years after the original Alien movie, Ripley, played by Sigourney Weaver, awakens to find the world hasn't changed all that much in a half century. The technology is pretty much the same, except for the cool new guns, and her expired "pilot" license still enables her to "drive" a sweet robot looking thing. Hello foreshadowing! No spoilers.
The premise is a bit far-fetched. Would they really allow a woman just out of chryo-statis (loooong nap) with obvious symptoms of PTSD on a mission to investigate the colony on the very planet where she escaped an alien attack? Also, why doesn't all hell break loose in the 57 years Ripley slept in her cozy pod? Were the aliens waiting for her to wake up to mess with her head? *shrugs*
I'm also not happy at all with the way marines are portrayed in the film. I get this group is a bit more rag-tag than most, but I highly doubt they'd be haggling their commanding officer in front of outsiders. Nor would they give Ripley a hard time when she's debriefing them, after their commanding officer reprimanded them. But, anyway...

The action scenes and standoff with the aliens blew my socks off! Not literally. But, for a movie made in 1986, the graphics sped light years ahead of its predecessor. The aliens - more than one this time - made for some scary fight sequences. And mama alien, WHOA! Do not mess with the mama.
Little Newt (played by Carrie Henn in her one and only acting role). Oh Newt. Putting aside the fact that I have no idea how this kid survived, I really took a shine to her. The connection between Newt and Ripley also felt genuine and not at all forced. Ripley's maternal and protective instincts bared some major claws and the showdown at the end...well, let me not spoil it for you, but to say, IT ROCKED!

Rating: B+

What do you think of this sequel? Better or worse than the first? 

ETA: As one of my faithful readers pointed out, I was incorrect in my assertion that critics reviewed Alien 3 as the best. Number 2 is in fact rated the most favorably. So, I've changed the beginning of the post accordingly. Thanks, PT!

10 comments :

  1. This movie is an all time great and pretty much defines the military scifi genre. The pulse rifle is a Hall of Fame weapon as are the "steady-cam" guns. Sigourney Weaver was nominated for an Academy Award for the role, a first for a scifi film and redefined what an action hero was. Like I said, an all time classic.

    Oh, your PTSD comment...the "Company" (still unnamed at the time) had little concern for human life, look at the original Alien movie.

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    1. That's a really great point, John. Didn't even think of the Company's outlook.

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  2. Wait, who says the third one is the best? Alien3 was terrible. Anyway, I liked Aliens best too. James Cameron took what Ridley Scott had done and took it to the logical extreme of a planet swarming with those aliens.

    To answer one of your questions, the aliens didn't come get her because they do not have space travel. The aliens just hitch rides with other people so the only way they could have come for her would be if one were inside her as in her nightmare.

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    1. I think you're right PT. Looks like I was off on my search skills, thought Alien 3 was rated the best. And yes, I thought it was terrible too. More in my review next week.

      True, but why did they wait so long to attack the colonists then?

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    2. Remember it was Rioley's debrief after waking from cryo that alerted the Company to the presence of aliens. the Company then sent the colonists to find the alien ship so the aliens didn't wake up till Ripley did :)

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  3. i think Aliens is my favorite as well. Ripley is such a badass.

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  4. The first Alien movie will always be imprinted in my impressionable mind as that movie that I went to see with my dad in a planetarium back in Russia that scared the sh*t out of me. My dad didn't know it was kind of a horror movie, thought it would be a fun sci-fi for us to watch. I was about ten, and I didn't sleep well for the next few weeks afterwards. lol

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  5. Honestly, every single of these films gave me the heeby-jeebies when I was younger. LOL! But, if I were to go back now and re-watch them, I'm sure I'd agree and say the 2nd movie was the best. And that mostly be because of Newt. I do remember wondering how she managed to survive. I know this isn't in the original trilogy, but I really liked Aliens vs. Predator (but that was mainly for the Predators - they're more my style for some reason).

    Now, the movie that's forever imprinted in my mind from when I was younger is Critters. When I watched it, I was at my aunt's house, and I remember exactly how the room smelled - like a strong oak smell that caught you off guard. Now whenever I smell something even remotely similar to that, all I can think about are Critters. Gosh darnit! Now I gotta go find that one and watch it too! ;)

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    1. Oh yes, Melinda. The Predators are much more my style too. They remind me of evil Klingons, and I was rooting for them in Alien vs Predator.

      I've never seen Critters, but it is on my to watch list for the reviews. :)

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  6. Yup. I have to agree. Aliens is my favorite. I love how they crept into the room and the crew couldn't figure out how they could be in there--then Ripley pushed back the panel in the ceiling--and there they were! Argh!!!!!!!!!

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