The Alibi
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Aliens (1986)
Action,Horror,Sci-Fi,Thriller
USA / English
"This time there's more. "
The planet from
Sigourney Weaver Ellen Ripley
Carrie Henn Rebecca 'Newt' Jorden
Michael Biehn Cpl. Dwayne Hicks
Lance Henriksen Bishop
Paul Reiser Carter Burke
Bill Paxton Pvt. Hudson
William Hope Lt. Gorman
Jenette Goldstein Pvt. Vasquez
Al Matthews Sgt. Apone
Mark Rolston Pvt. Drake
Ricco Ross Pvt. Frost
Colette Hiller Cpl. Ferro
Daniel Kash Pvt. Spunkmeyer
Cynthia Dale Scott Cpl. Dietrich (as Cynthia Scott)
Tip Tipping Pvt. Crowe
Director: James Cameron
Producer: Gale Anne Hurd
Writer: Dan O'Bannon,Ronald Shusett
Compelling, far superior sequel to sci-fi classic (8/10)
Seven years after barely surviving events on board the Nostromo in Ridley Scott's classic sci-fi horror ALIEN, Sigourney Weaver reprised her role as Warrant Officer Ripley for one of the most compelling and critically-acclaimed sequels of all time. Canadian director James Cameron had already struck gold with the Arnold Schwarzenegger starring vehicle THE TERMINATOR (1984), after his somewhat inauspicious feature film directorial debut with the long-forgotten, Dutch-backed PIRANHA II: THE SPAWNING 3 years earlier. ALIENS would further cement Cameron's growing reputation as a first-rate director of high-tech, fast-paced, adrenaline-pumping action thrillers, from which there would normally be no let-up once they got going.

When Ripley is rescued from drifting aimlessly through deep space, she is horrified to learn that not only has she been asleep for 57 years, but the planet on which she had encountered the original alien all that time ago has since been colonized. At first no-one will heed her warnings or completely believe the story she gives at an official enquiry as to what happened to her and her fellow Nostromo crew members. But then contact is lost with LV-426, and despite initially throwing Ripley "to the wolves" (as she herself puts in), The Company, through representative Carter J. Burke (Paul Reiser), suddenly finds itself in a position of having to ask Ripley for help, finally persuading her to return to the planet that still consumes her every nightmare, as an advisor to a motley group of very tough colonial marines expecting this to be just another run-of-the-mill "bug-hunt". But how wrong that assumption turns out to be!

I would argue that ALIENS far surpasses its celebrated predecessor in almost every aspect. Obviously the sheer spectacle of what is basically a Vietnam war movie in space is particularly awe-inspiring - the impressive sets, the many excitingly-staged combat sequences, the aliens themselves (interestingly enough, although through fast cutting and appropriate camera placement it seems as though there are hundreds of aliens being blasted to kingdom come - or else picking off the gung-ho marines one by one - in reality no more than 6 aliens are ever seen in any one shot). But the human drama element of this sequel is also greatly heightened, primarily by the introduction of "Newt" (wonderful little Carrie Henn, in her only film role), who turns out to be the sole survivor of recent events on LV-426, becoming a kind-of surrogate daughter to Ripley, which leads to several touching moments and gives the story a surprisingly effective emotional core in the midst of all the otherwise pre-eminent carnage.

Amongst the talented supporting players are Cameron regulars Michael Biehn (THE TERMINATOR, THE ABYSS) and Bill Paxton (bit part in THE TERMINATOR, TRUE LIES, TITANIC), and Cameron's punchy dialogue includes such suitably macho wisecracks as - Hudson (Paxton): "Hey Vasquez, have you ever been mistaken for a man?" Vasquez (a pumped-up Jenette Goldstein): "No, have you?" Nominated for 7 Oscars, including Weaver as Best Actress (again this confirms the general class on display, as it is fairly rare for the Academy to recognize the acting qualities inherent in this type of predominantly action-driven movie), the film went on to win for Best Visual Effects and Best Sound Effects Editing. Further, almost inevitable sequels followed in 1992 and 1997, but I prefer to think of the terrifying perils of Ellen Ripley as ending on this high note.

Personal
Seen it:Nej
Nr of disks/tapes:1
User credit 1:1001 movies you must see before you die
User credit 2: 744
Storage device:DVD
Loan
Movie
Imdb rating: 8.4
Musician: James Horner
Running time: 154 min (director's cut)
Technical
Subtitles: Svenska
Audio tracks: Dolby Digital 5.1 [English]
Everything else:
Last modified: 2007-07-18 22:31:3