Why Aliens is Even Better Than Alien

James Cameron’s “Aliens” (1986) is rightfully regarded as one of the greatest follow-ups in film history. Even though it shares several elements with its predecessor, comparing them feels like a case of apples and oranges.Ridley Scott’s “Alien” (1979) is slow and involving; Cameron’s feature is one of the busiest, most chaotic movies in memory.

“Aliens” deals with the return of Ellen Ripley to LV-426, the planet where the Nostromo crew first came upon the title creature. Just a few days after waking up from a 57-year nap, Ripley learns that a colony set there 20 years before has recently lost contact with Earth and is eventually recruited to join a rescue mission. She embarks there with a group of Marines on an assignment to wipe out the creatures (why is it that characters in movies like this are never told about the nature of their mission before they have already traveled light years from Earth?). As with all of those “侏罗纪公园” entries that “Aliens” inspired, the arrogant Marines will find themselves over their heads facing an almost unstoppable enemy.

Even though this is clearly a Great Movie, I wouldn’t go as far as to call it a perfect one. For a space feature set in the far future, it has too many elements that instantly give away the exact time period when it was made:保罗赖泽’s '80s hair; its “widescreen” monitors that simply consist of old-fashioned, low resolution ones cropped with over lapping frames; and the unlikely prevalence of smoking (unless such habit does make a comeback and this prediction turns out to be true).

There are also several plot elements in “Aliens” that don’t make much sense. What was the point of taking a spaceship the size of a small city in order to transport no more than a couple dozen passengers? Why wouldn’t the Marines leave at least one person aboard the Sulaco while orbiting LV-426 (like their counterparts in the later “外国人:盟约“),以防万一出事了?为什么做了令人惊讶的辉煌外国人由数百为了抢人了一把,当他们去经历这个过程的全部意义在于能够孵化他们的鸡蛋,并允许它们的物种发扬光大神风自己?(我想删除的场面,几十个几十人通过无人机枪消灭的)。

Additionally, why is it that every sequel to the original “Alien” seems to overlook the fact that the creature’s acidic blood once almost blew a hole through the Nostromo, but when their characters are sprinkled with such, they simply get bandaged and move on? I was also under the impression that “Aliens” was a more original movie until I watched its predecessor’s DVD deleted scenes and ran into a sequence that depicts the creature’s modus operandi for reproductive purposes, an idea that was clearly written for the original. Still, these are all minor details that don’t take away too much from the movie.


连同它的f-the-charts intensity, Scott’s “Alien” became a classic thanks to several bravura sequences of immense shock value, like the chest-bursting creature’s debut, the milky revelation of the Science Officer's true nature and the emergence of one the most unexpected film heroes in history. These sequences would seem impossible to top, but several moments in “Aliens” turned out to be just as good or even better. Just think of the jaw-dropping moment when Ripley accidentally enters a room that fully reveals how these creatures come to be. There’s also the film’s final sequence, structured similarly to that in the original (just when you thought the creatures are dead … ) but much more elaborate, giving a seemingly harmless contraption seen early in the movie the most unexpected use. This sequence is introduced by what is surely my favorite moment in the whole series (从她脱身......!).


“Aliens” also doesn't share the benefit of being able to gradually reveal what was once an unfamiliar creature (a la “Jaws“)。看完电影最近我才明白只是它的许多幻想,通过编辑的魔术或通过纯粹的聪明才智来实现,当几个生物的攻击人物,都用一个外国人的西装,通常是由同一个演员占据完成。


Gerardo Valero


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