Tuesday, December 4

Alien Resurrection Review

I watched on: Blu-Ray
Price I paid: £? (I’ve had this a long time and can’t remember)
Notes: I watched the 2003 directors cut

Alien Resurrection has possibly one of the strangest openings ever. We start on a Xenomorph bug rendered in awful 90’s CGI before it’s squashed by some random guy. I think most peoples reaction to this will be the same as mine and that’s; what? This is never explained by the way. Did a facehugger impregnate a fly? Is it something to do with the failed cloning we see later in the film? I have no idea, it’s never mentioned again. This oddity sets the tone for this very strange film, however.

Set 200 years after Alien 3. Weyland Yutani is no more and technology has advanced to the point of allowing cloning from blood samples. This brings us to Ripley who is resurrected via this process on board a military space station. The Xenomorph queen that was growing in Ripley’s chest is also cloned along with her. We’re then introduced to a group of pirates smuggling people onto the base for impregnation by the facehuggers. This group of human traffickers are our heroes during this adventure. We have captain Elgyn, pilot Hillard with Christie and Johner making up the muscle while Vriess and Call are the mechanics. Most of these characters are bland and boring relying too much on clichés. The only three characters that are in anyway enjoyable are Ripley, Call and Johner. Ron Pearlman breaths life into an otherwise mundane character with Johner. Thanks to Pearlman’s natural charisma Johner feels like a loveable asshole. Sigourney Weaver returns as Ripley. Winona Ryder plays Call. These two women are without a doubt the most talented actors in this production. While these three are not enough to make this a good film they do make certain parts enjoyable. The scene with Ripley and Johner flirting over a game of basketball is ridiculous and very fun.

Of course, the Xenomorphs break free and chaos erupts with all the military personnel quickly evacuating or getting killed. This leaves just the pirates, Ripley, a scientist and a soldier left trying to escape the station. I’ll be honest the special effects on the Xenomorphs are pretty good and we do get some entertaining action scenes. I remember loving this film when I was younger simply because it was the best look at the aliens we had at that time. This point is a bit mute with modern video games as well as the newer Alien and Alien vs Predator films. This is part of the reason why I find I enjoy Resurrection less than I used to. It’s strongest features have now been surpassed by other media. That’s not to say I don’t find this film amusing because I do but now it’s in the same way I enjoy awful B-movies.

That’s the thing with Resurrection, it’s entirely throwaway, unlike the other 3 Alien films. What I mean by this is that it doesn’t bring anything worth having to the mythology of the Xenomorphs. The first film started it all giving us this world, the aliens and Engineers. Aliens introduced the concept of the queen, the warrior Xenomorphs and their hive. Then we got the idea of the Xenomorph sharing traits with its host from Alien 3 which was amazing. Resurrection has none of these ideas. What it does have are all really strange and somewhat stupid concepts that don’t make a lot of sense. Ripley is part Xenomorph now with heightened senses and acid blood but it doesn’t change anything about her character. She’s not suddenly a bad guy or anything because she still kills the aliens same as she always has. We also have the idea of the Xenomorph queen mutating a human womb thanks to the cloning and giving birth to the Newborn. This doesn’t make a lot of sense because according to Alien 3 the drone and warrior Xenomorphs are already part human.

In summery Alien Resurrection is not a good film but there are points when it’s at least campy enough to be entertaining. I can’t say it’s one I would go out of my way to recommend. If you’re bored one night and fancy some throwaway Alien action there are worse out there. It’s not a good film at all but if you’ve got company and fancy a good popcorn flick this will do. Just turn your brain off and don’t worry about talking over it. Fun with friends but kinda boring on your own.

Recommendation Rating: 4 out of 10

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