Alien Resurrection (1997)
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Sigourney Weaver, Winona Ryder, Ron Perlman, Dominique Pinon, Michael Wincott, Kim Flowers, Leland Orser, Brad Dourif, Dan Hedaya, J.E. Freeman, Raymond Cruz
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Please... Kill... Me
Favorite Movie Quote: "I'm not the one with whom to f*ck."
I remember when Alien Resurrection hit the theaters; I was so young and naive then. I used to get excited for sequels like this, foolishly assuming that the filmmakers would want to move the collective narrative progressively forward. Why do what's already been done to perfection? Jim Cameron understood this idea when he made Aliens. Nearly every Aliens film has been a steady slide back into the primordial soup, those not stepping backwards being merely less crappy, but like the Ripley character (Sigourney Weaver) in this film, it keeps finding its way to slime its way out.
The only new ball Resurrection brings to play with involves a ridiculously stupid, Island of Doctor Moreau (played by Lurch-lookin' motherf*cker, JE Freemen), Voodoo science that nets a hybrid Ripley-Alien clone (stroke it, fanboys, stroke it) and a hybrid Alien-human (I thought that's what they kind of already were) that has a womb, as the disembodied head (Brad Dourif) will tell you. This experiment has taken 200 years to happen for some reason, and takes places on the Auriga, a military craft located in the middle of nowhere. One would assume, for security purposes, but when the fit hits the shan, the Auriga does what? Automatically heads back to Earth. Yeah... maybe we should've changed that?
Or how about keep the Alien research localized in specific modular compartments that - in an emergency - detatch from the main ship? Or how about keeping the Aliens seperate from one another? Or - and this is a recurring stupidity that the 'advanced' Predators trip on too - make a containment cell that can, I dunno, contain them? Are we still asleep on the whole acid for blood thing? Of course, I didn't expect the military to be too effective; they're run by one of the villains from Commando (Dan Hedaya).
So as the military has not in any way been briefed on what's going on, they are lambs to the slaughter (this all seems so familiar). There are also some mercenaries, the only two I care about being Michael Wincott and Ron Pearlman, and only because of their previous work. No I do not care about Winona Ryder - who plays an android (this all seems so familiar) - an actor that always reminded me of a little china doll, only slighly less lifelike, and whose popularity hinged greatly on looking fourteen (all the joys of a statutory rape fantasy with none of the guilt).
To be done like this, the Resurrection of this franchise was pointless, epitomized with Ripley's hybrid clone. Weaver spends most of the movie in a deliberate haze, seeming to share her character's uncertainty. In an unintentional moment of self-parody, Ripley wanders amongst a freakshow of Ripley hybrids, mirroring what the series had and would eventually become. As one hybrid cries out, "kill... me," (this all seems so familiar) it's almost as if the series itself is begging to be put out of its misery.
Weaver actually wanted to step back or bow out entirely after the second film, wisely understanding that there was only so many times you could Die Hard a character without it getting silly. In this, Resurrection also shows a complete lack of spine in bringing back Ripley - this is played to the nines in the superhero comics and I find it no less infuriating there. If you're going to bring a character back, it's going to lessen the impact of death, similar to how the killing of Hicks and Newt (if you choose to acknowledge Alien 3's existence) renders the climax of Aliens pointless. It's just rude to do that to another film.
I've heard how beautifully shot and lit this is... I guess. I mean there's nothing else to watch really. I keep coming back to the point. What is it? That would help me determine whether or not I liked how it was shot because that is (or should be) secondary to what you're shooting and why.
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