Let’s beat this dead horse one final time by taking another dead horse (in this case lists) and beating it to death. I promised myself that i would get Prometheus‘ review out before doing the obligatory ordered list of my faves, i did just that and now i can have some fun.
So this is my ranking for the proper Alien franchise (from last to first):
Well it’s better late than never i say. Though truth be told i think it rather fitting that i wrap up the Alien franchise with Prometheus, as it really has very little to do with the series and does everything it can to escape the trappings of a prequel.
I quite liked Prometheus when i saw it in the theatre, and just like Alien Covenant (or rather vice versa) i was really taken aback by the negative response it received. There were tons of people asking ridiculous questions like:
“Why did David poison Holloway?”
“Why didn’t Vickers run sideways?”
“Why did the Engineers want to kill us?”
All of these questions usually had answers in the movie, addressed either implicitly or explicitly by character action, context, and admittedly conjecture.
I figured i should get this out while Alien Covenant is still playing in theatres, considering its rather troubling tumble in the box office it might not be around for very much longer and i think that’s a shame.
There are spoilers within this review, so in short my recommendations are:
Go see the movie, i’ve seen the movie twice and it holds up, and i think it’s better than Aliens.
Oop, life got in the way for me getting these things out before Alien: Covenant came out, and before saw it as well. Oh well, i can’t do anything about the past but i can do something about the future and the future is always now.
Alien: Resurrection certainly carries around a reputation that’s hard to shake off, like a bad smell. Joss Whedon certainly dislikes it, almost to the point of disowning the thing. While i certainly know how a director can take what you wrote and change it (despite everything being what you wrote) into something you don’t recognise, i can’t say that Whedon is completely free from guilt here.
As all of his idiosyncrasies are evident in the movie we have before us, and the writing is kinda weak in a few areas.
But we’re getting ahead of ourselves.
3rd times a charm certainly wasn’t the case for the alien franchise. The troubled production of Alien ³ is very much storied, and the end result (to my memory) was disjointed, and vaguely insulting to fans of Aliens. I held onto those negative impressions, i didn’t buy the quadrilogy and instead bought the three other movies separately as i deemed Alien ³ to be unnecessary.
But a friend who had watched and liked the assembly cut convinced me to give it a second chance, i did and was frankly amazed at how much i liked it.
Jim Sterling did a defense of it in his short-lived Movie Defense Force on the escapist:
I agree with much of what he says in his defense of Alien ³ with the exception of him asserting it is the best, and that the aliens have stood for loss.
As Alien is the best in the series, and the creatures have consistently stood for one thing: Fear.
Also the film’s very existence renders Aliens pointless, as in both of the previous entries the end result of facing ones fears is victory and survival. This is particularly so with Aliens as its message is that of the benefits of facing ones fears can lead to self-healing, it’s only here in Alien ³ that the message changes.
But i’m getting ahead of myself.
a pretty awesome abstract poster, no clue who the artist is though
Time to mosey onto the 2nd film in the series.
I can say for certain that the first film of this illustrious franchise that i had watched would be Aliens. When that would have been though is totally lost to me, my most educated guess would place it somewhere around the ages of 5-12 and it would probably have been at my cousin’s place. I remember having an Alien queen action figure and i still remember fragments of my mother buying it, (it was the kenner series circa 1992) i loved that toy and had it for many, many years.
Other than that, there was a poll on the escapist forums years ago that asked the all important question:
Alien or Aliens?
Given the setting of the poll (being a gaming website) i wasn’t surprised that the results leaned heavily towards the latter. Aliens’ effect on the video gaming world is indelible, it has served as inspiration for countless FPS titles and will do so likely for many more years to come.
But what about my answer?
I initially wasn’t very interested in seeing this version of Ghost in the Shell, as the anime has problems of its own and my familiarity with the series doesn’t go past that.
However some teaser or screen shots that i saw of the Major fighting in water had me wonder if this was going to be a remake of the anime, and not another story from the manga itself; which got me hopeful that the film makers would address the many problems that the original anime had.
Thankfully Ghost in the Shell turns out to be a good remake, and it does indeed address the issues of the original but it comes with some of its own.