Aliens (1986)

Holy S%$^

Ripley, you are one badass mamma!

It had been too long since I saw the Ripley Scott film Alien and James Cameron’s Aliens so I watched Alien yesterday and it was great.  Then, since Aliens was 155 minutes long, I waited until today to watch it.

Holy S%$#

This thing was just completely insane.  I do not remember being this tense or ridden with anxiety the last time I watched this film.

Aliens was just tremendous.  I liked it even more than the first one.

Ripley (Sigourney Weaver) was found 57 years later, still floating in her cryo-sleep on her escape vehicle after the first film.  Returned to civilization, the Company did not believe the story that she told about surviving the alien and having to blow the compound up.  However, when the moon LV-426 where Ripley’s team originally landed, picking up the alien had been colonized and contact lost, a team was sent to scout and rescue whom they could.  Ripley was asked to go along, but she did not want to go.  Unable to escape the nightmares, she finally decided to join the search as long as they were there to wipe the creatures out of existence.

This film is more of an action/adventure film than a science fiction film, though it still can be categorized as such.  I liked the crew that accompanied Ripley this time, including the android Bishop (Lance Henriksen) who Ripley did not trust, weaselly Company man Burke (Paul Reiser), Corporal Hicks (Michael Biehn), Hudson (the late, great Bill Paxton), and Vasquez (Jenette Goldstein).  The cat is replaced in this film by Newt (Carrie Henn) the sole survivor of the outpost- a little girl who has survived in the vents.  These characters meant more to me than the ones in the first film so, for those that would not make it, I felt more of a loss.

I found myself yelling at the screen, supporting Ripley as she ripped through the situations she gets dropped into.  Showing just how capable and kick ass she truly was.  I threw my fist into the air as Ripley yelled at the Alien Queen, who was trying to kill Newt,  “Get away from her, you bitch!”  What a perfect moment.  And while that line of dialogue could be seen as corny or over-the-top, it is delivered so perfectly by Weaver and is such a release of pent up frustration and anger for both Ripley and the audience, it is a perfect moment.

Again, I knew the end result of the film, but it had been long enough that much of the film was a refresher.  I remembered more about this film though than I did the first one prior to the re-watch.

The core of this movie is Ripley.  She is, not only, bad ass, she is extremely smart.  Remember how she was right in the first film and none of this would be happening had they listened to her?  She puts that quick brain on display here as much as she puts her bad ass self.  She is commanding, dominant and powerful in her opinions and damn those who may be in her way.  I loved how she stood up to the brazen Marines at the start and how she was able to overcome her own desperate fears to become an icon of female power.  She is the ultimate female action hero in movies and she is truly the total package.  Plus, she can run the exo-suit cargo loader like a boss!

The film is a great looking film, even though there are a few moments where the green screen was apparent.  Still, for 1986, this is an impressive feat.

It is a remarkable film.  It sits at 98% on Rotten Tomatoes out of 66 reviews there was only one dissenter.  I wondered who that was, because I couldn’t believe that someone went against this.  It was Gene Siskel of all people.  Wild.

This was an amazing film.  I do not remember being this amazed by it when I first watched it so I am truly glad I got to see it again on HBO.  I think this one has found its way into my favorite films of all time.

“Game over, man.  Game over.”





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