Alien Resurrection (Special Edition) (2007)
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Critic Reviews for Alien Resurrection (Special Edition)
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Audience Reviews for Alien Resurrection (Special Edition)
Everything from the first Alien, a crew of misfits sorta arguing with one another throughout, a dark spaceship to explore the way out of, military and scientists way out of control, and finally, a horde of killer land sharks with two sets of teeth and feet to boot, acid blood, and a nasty attitude. I liked it again (despite all the weird Ripley loving on the Alien sequences ... what was that all about?)
200 years after the death of Ellen Ripley she is cloned by yet more misguided scientists in order to breed the species for their research on board a military vessel. Alien 3 tried to follow the template of the first film with some flawed success and Alien Resurrection does the same for its sequel Aliens with similar results. The very contrived premise is one that you have to accept considering Ripley died at the end of the previous film but the whole alien hybrid concept is a little harder to swallow. Joss Whedon actually disowned the script after various studio rewrites but it does have some very nice moments; particularly the scene in which Ripley confronts "herself" and the idea of self aware androids consumed with self loathing. Jeunet also stamps his own brand of attractive visual invention on the proceedings and the effects are streets ahead of Alien 3's. The aliens also have a lot more character and the set pieces are executed with some real panache, especially the underwater pursuit that reminded me of a futuristic Poseidon Adventure! Unfortunately it falls down at the last hurdle with the afore-mentioned hybrid that's a slightly ridiculous idea and the creature itself looks rubbish. The journey there is very entertaining though and despite being the least inventive of the series it's still a creditable addition to the franchise. But inevitably, it's once again nowhere near as good as the first two. The special edition adds little to the original story to be honest, with a rather poorly judged "Men In Black" style intro and brief final scene set on Earth which you take take or leave with little impact on the overall film.
As I open this review I realize the unintended pun in regards to the title. Resurrection. This picture idea needed to remain dead. Don't get me wrong, I had a good laugh watching it and I was even entertained. But it's a clear example of what already began to take place in Alien 3 and takes place with many Hollywood franchises all the time. The product makes money, so you turn to the accountant types to 'package' the next version of cool aid, hence removing the originality from the product that made the big bucks to begin with. Or, we could call it a resurrection. Director Jean-Pierre Jeunet is brilliant, I like all his other movies. Truly imaginative and creative like no other films. The cinematographer, Darius Khondji, is a genius. Simply turn off the volume and watch any images from this film on their own merit. The guy's work should be hanging from a museum. The digital effects and production design were superb. The ships are believable and the environment convincing. You feel like you are in there. And finally, we get to the script. Joss Whedon's script... Ok. So, Alien 3 might have aimed a couple notches too far towards the dramatic aspect of what was always intended as a fun thriller with good action in it. And I am definitely a fan of Whedon's work. All that being said. Alien is not Firefly. Campy works for the space pirates, not with the legacy of Ridley Scott, James Cameron, and David Fincher. Looking back at all this highly talented pieces of the puzzle, it's easy to see why they don't fit at all. Clearly, the studio guys knew nothing of this folk's work. They were probably "packaging" this thing via their assistants. I mean, have you seen any of Jean-Pierre Jeunet's movies? I'm talking about Delicatessen and Amelie here. Go have a look. Tell me where you see an alien and a space ship in there? And Whedon's character's structure? The space pirate types? They board a military grade ship in a renegade top mission? Seriously, that was the best idea all that studio money could come up with? Look, I do own the Firefly DVD collection, I love it. But make your own judgment on this. Go watch a random episode of Firefly and then have a view of Ridley Scott's Alien. Tell me how exactly do you thread any of these elements together? We all wanna make movies and want to be part of big studio projects, but, give me a break, there comes a time to also say "I'll pass on this one. It's not for me."
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