Tag Archives: prometheus

Movie Review: Alien Covenant (2017) “Some Things Should Remain a Mystery”

 

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Here’s my advice to you: if you’re going to go see Alien: Covenant in the theater and you have not watched Prometheus since it came out, you will be vastly better informed if you give yourself a refresher course.  Now, if you hated Prometheus, that’s going to be a problem, because Alien: Covenant picks up 14 years after those events and the end of Prometheus spawns by far the most interesting parts of Covenant.  The quick and dirty of my opinion on Covenant, because I am going to have to get into spoiler territory a bit, is that I think two episodes into Ridley Scott’s demystification of the origins of the xenomorphs have convinced me the entire endeavor is a mistake.  Sometimes things become a lot less interesting the more you know about them (Wolverine’s origin should still be a mystery, for example).  Prometheus was gorgeous, dreamed big, was massively flawed, but was admirable in its ambition.  Covenant provides answers….eventually, but is criminally boring in getting to them with 75% of Prometheus‘ budget (no one will be calling this film “gorgeous”).  It’s not Aliens 3 or Resurrection….but, honestly, it’s not even Prometheus. Continue reading Movie Review: Alien Covenant (2017) “Some Things Should Remain a Mystery”

My Favorite Scene: Aliens (1986) “Ripley vs. The Alien Queen”

First of all, shame on YouTube for not having one of the greatest fights in film history in one clip, and yes, the annoying intro for each part ruins the flow, but believe it or not, this is the best take I could find on the infamous climax in the second film in the Alien Franchise.  While Alien was a horror movie, James Cameron (remember when he wasn’t just the Avatar guy?) came in and made Aliens a war film.  It’s a total toss-up as to which is the better film.  They’re both perfect at what they were trying to achieve.  Back when sequels that matched the original really only had Godfather Part II and Empire Strikes Back as peers, Aliens completely matched its predecessor.  Instead of just one xenomorph, now there was an entire hive, which leads to the reveal at the end of the film of one of film’s greatest monsters: The Alien Queen.  Whereas in the first film, Ellen Ripley (Sigourney Weaver) is really just a survivor and a victim, in Aliens she becomes a warrior.  Weaver broke ground on what a woman could do as the star as an action movie, and remains the standard (she even managed to shake an Oscar nomination out of the Academy for something cool, which still blows me away).  From the discovery of the Queen and her nest to the loader battle in the dock, this titanic battle of two mothers over their “children” still remains one of science fiction’s greatest moments.
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My Favorite Scene: Alien (1979) “The Chestburster”

Yes, as you may have surmised from the above still, if you don’t know anything about Alien…..there’s a dinner surprise that gets a bit gory.  We’re under two weeks from Alien 6 (counting Prometheus), and Alien: Covenant is getting fairly positive reviews so far, but nothing like the groundbreaking science fiction that were the first two films in the series.  Alien came along two years after Star Wars, and it couldn’t be more different and be in the same genre.  This crew of essentially space truckers stumbles across one of the greatest, most ingeniously horrific, monsters in cinema history.  The horror of the Alien isn’t just that’s it’s a pretty perfectly designed killing machine.  It’s the life cycle of the creature itself.  From the freaky eggs, to the “face huggers” that implant the victims in a manner that would seem to be the most disturbing part of the process until you get to the ….hatching.  When the alien grows to a certain size and no longer needs its host, it simply leaves in the most direct way possible.  I cannot imagine what it must have been like to sit in a theater in 1979, having no idea what this thing was, and watch this dinner scene from hell unfold.  People must have been clinging to the ceiling.  It’s one of the most horrifying, most shocking scenes ever filmed.  And it’s not like things get better, because the next time you tend to see the buggers, they look like this:
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and that tends to be the last thing you ever see.
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9 Deleted Scenes That Fix WHOPPING Plot Holes

Deleted scenes are pretty much the highlight of the DVD/Blu Ray era.  Yes, occasionally you get a “making of” documentary that isn’t everyone sitting in a circle extolling the brilliance of every other single person on the film crew, but all Blu Rays can’t be the Lord of the Rings Extended Editions.  Deleted scenes give you extra information on the film, its editing process, and can often leave you slackjawed and goggled as to why in the world something was cut from the film in the first place.  For example, The Incredible Hulk is routinely at the bottom of pretty much everyone’s list of the MCU films, but if you watch all the deleted scenes, you quickly come to understand why Edward Norton threw the fit over the final cut of the film that got him replaced by Mark Ruffalo.  Sometimes a deleted scene closes a gaping plot loophole, one you may not have even realized existed.  What Culture has put together a brilliant little manic journey through nine films in which a big plot hole could have been fixed by the inclusion of a single cut scene.
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Aliens 5 Will Be Directed By Neil Blomkamp and will “Finish Ripley’s Story Properly”.

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Rather than a continuation of the weirdness that was Prometheus, FOX is going back to basics with its Aliens series.  Neil Blomkamp (District 9, Elysium, Chappie) has signed to direct a fifth film in the series that will give Ellen Ripley’s story “a proper ending”.  From his words in the Coming Soon article below, it seems like Blomkamp will bypass Aliens 3 and 4, much like Bryan Singer did with The Man of Steel’s series in Superman Returns.  I can’t think of a director more suited to getting the Aliens series back on track than Blomkamp.  My only disappointment was I was hoping he’d do one of the Star Wars spin-offs, but this certainly isn’t a bad consolation prize.  Sigourney Weaver will return to the role and has expressed confidence in Blomkamp’s ability to finish Ripley’s story.

Continue reading Aliens 5 Will Be Directed By Neil Blomkamp and will “Finish Ripley’s Story Properly”.