This movie is a vast improvement on 3, but still never manages to hit the highs of the first two movies of the Alien series. Sigourney Weaver is finally starting to feel like she’s phoning Ripley in by now. She seems really bored, like she’s only there for a pay check. The rest of the main cast is ok, the only standout being Ron ‘Hellboy’ Perlman as a gruff sarcastic mercenary. Winona Ryder is also in the cast as an eco terrorist trying to prevent the company from turning the alien into a biological weapon. She needn’t have worried, as anyone familiar with this series knows, things usually go pear shaped at some stage during these films.
I will give this movie (and Alien 3) credit: they do try to be different. Both movies go in directions you don’t expect. Ripley returns in this fourth instalment as a clone of her human self. It is set 200 years after she died in the Alien 3. She has been genetically modified to be alien/human hybrid with a less concentrated version of acid for blood than what the Aliens have. She is cloned so that scientists can remove the alien queen that was growing inside her when she died. The queen then starts producing eggs which need humans to impregnate.
Enter the space ship ‘the Betty’, and a group of mercenaries who deliver several humans for the face hugger aliens to do their thing with. Once these aliens are hatched, the scientists who cloned Ripley attempt to train them to follow orders. This does not go well as the aliens break free and start causing havoc. The commotion causes the space station that houses these experiments to enact an emergency procedure that will lead back to earth. The crew of the Betty, with Ripley’s help, need to get back to their ship and destroy the space station before it gets to earth and releases the alien species on the human race.
There’s not much to write about here. It’s better than Alien 3, but that’s not very hard. During the credits I did notice the script was written by Joss Whedon, and there are some really witty lines that are obviously his trademarks. It’s interesting that the man who gave us Buffy the Vampire Slayer and River Tam also had a go at writing Ellen Ripley. Whedon writes strong females really well, and it’s a shame Weaver looks so bored throughout the film, because the combination of Joss Whedon and Ellen Ripley could’ve been something special.
I’m glad this group of movies is almost over, because they keep getting more and more ridiculous and/or infuriating. That being said, Alien: Resurrection is better than Alien 3.
Sigourney Weaver is back as our heroine Ellen Ripley, thanks to the marvel of cloning. Only this time she isn’t quite herself. The queen she was impregnated with back in Alien 3 has fused with clone Ripley’s DNA, so now she has acid blood and is kind of in love with her alien child. It’s… weird.
This DNA fusing plot device is taken to another level with the introduction of the most disgusting creature ever imagined: a human/alien hybrid birthed by the alien queen. This thing is seriously unsettling. Not only is it unpleasant to look at, but it also seems to recognize Ripley as it’s grandmother. On a slightly related note, I didn’t enjoy the CGI aliens used this time around, especially the overdone “wet look”/saliva dripping. They looked like they were constantly drooling or possibly profusely sweaty. Not a good look, even for an alien.
Again we are introduced to a group of new characters that Ripley must save from the alien threat, and again I just don’t care about them. A couple of them are kind of cool, like Warrick Brown from CSI and Tuco from Breaking Bad, but then Hellboy is a complete ass and Winona Ryder is somehow unconvincing as an android, so the group pretty much breaks even.
At least Ripley finally makes it back to earth. Better hundreds of years late than never, I guess.