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Alien: Resurrection (Alien 4) (1997)

  Directed by: Jean-Pierre Jeunet
Written by: Dan O'Bannon, Ronald Shusett, Joss Whedon
Starring: Winona Ryder, Sigourney Weaver
Links: Alien: Resurrection on the IMDb, Official site, Buy on DVD, Buy on Video, Buy the Soundtrack
Genre: Suspense/Horror/Thriller

This movie gets: 5.00 (1 rating)
nofreelist.com Ranking: not yet ranked (awaiting 2 ratings)

"No more!" - a review by andy-j

After watching Alien³ (1992), you'd think that they wouldn't be making any more Alien films - not because it was bad, but because the ending of Alien³ made a sequel unlikely. But Fox Studios decided one more Alien film would be the order of the day, and so the franchise was resurrected and we are given Alien: Resurrection. Okay, before we continue, I should warn you that if you haven't seen Alien³, you should probably stop reading now because I can't write this review without giving away said movie's ending.

Unfortunately, the whole Alien: Resurrection experience pretty much stinks. Once again, Ellen Ripley is back. But didn't she die at the end of Alien³? Yes, she did. But somehow a bunch of underground renegade scientists obtained her DNA from somewhere and used it to reconstruct her onboard a ship floating in outer space where they are exempt from the law. And when they did this, they also managed to reconstruct the alien growing inside of her. Having an alien growing in your stomach must fundamentally change your DNA. I have no idea why. It makes absolutely no sense from a biological standpoint. Why would it go to all the trouble to change every cell in your body when you're just going to die when it bursts out of your stomach? The real kicker is when Ripley asks "how did you bring me back?" — and the scientist's response? "With a lot of hard work". Great!

The reason that Ripley was bought back was so that the alien could be extracted from her (and her copies) and sold on the black market or used for some sinister purposes. So the aliens soon breed, but craftily manage to escape from their prison, and soon manage to cause all sorts of mischief and havoc onboard the ship. The whole thing ends up as a race against time for the crew to escape from the ship before the aliens catch them and give them to their newly-hatched queen. Somehow, Ripley is now half-human, half-alien. Oh, and fully grown. She is super-strong, has acid for blood and has extremely good reflexes. But she is no longer Ripley. She is pretty much a robot. She seems able to identify with the aliens now, so we don't know if she can be trusted. She now comes out with all sorts of 'cool' one-liners. I like the old Ripley better, so much more polite. And a much stronger character.

The aliens are all computer-generated. In 1997, CGI was not where it is today, and the end result is that they really don't look as realistic as they should. Additionally, we are just so completely used to the Aliens that they are not scary. Not one teensy bit. There are few encounters with them and there's nothing new about them. In fact, they seem incapable and stupid when compared to the creatures in the earlier Alien films. Underwhelming and disappointing. The major major problem with Alien: Resurrection is the script. It's true that the film attempts to compensate for the lack of scares by taking things in a really interesting new direction. Unfortunately, all of these new developments are left too late and really aren't explained well. Perhaps if they had started the whole escalation of events 30 minutes earlier, I would have enjoyed this a lot more. There's definitely potential, but the whole script seems like it hasn't been thought out properly, or approached with any sense of care or expertise. We're left with all these plot holes and the whole thing feels like it was made for video. It's like a comic book or something. Cheap. Blergh. I enjoyed it, but not on the level that I enjoyed its prequels.

No more sequels please!

andy-j gives this movie 5 out of 10.
Review created on Tue 5 Jul 2005

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Reader comments

  1. I couldnt have agreed more.A very well written review.

    I just cant believe the way they screwed it up.

    Rating given: 1

    A comment from Tom on Fri 10 Feb 2006 07:41 #

Those who have commented give this movie: 1.00 (1 rating)

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