REVIEW: ABDUCTION

CAST

Taylor Lautner (Twilight)
Lily Collins (Mirror Mirror)
Alfred Molina (Spider-Man 2)
Jason Isaacs (Star Trek: Discovery)
Maria Bello (The Cooler)
Sigourney Weaver (Alien)
Michael Nyqvist (John Wick)
Dermot Mulroney (Young Guns)
Nickola Shreli (Hostel – Part III)
Elisabeth Röhm (Joy)
Ilia Volok (Power Rangers: Wild Force)

Denzel Whitaker and Taylor Lautner in Abduction (2011)Nathan Harper (Taylor Lautner) is an 18-year-old high school senior living in the suburbs of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania with his parents Kevin (Jason Isaacs) and Mara (Maria Bello). He has troubles from recurring nightmares and has been seeing psychiatrist Dr. Geraldine “Geri” Bennett (Sigourney Weaver) to diagnose them. Nathan is teamed with Karen Murphy (Lily Collins) for a school research project on missing children. Nathan discovers he looks very much like an age-progression photo of a missing child, Steven Price. His investigations show that his parents are probably biologically unrelated. He approaches Mara and she confirms the truth. She goes off crying to get his father to help her explain it all to him. Two men claiming to be from the Department of Juvenile Justice arrive at Nathan’s home in the evening while Mara is on her way to get Kevin. Mara is suspicious and attacks the two, but is shot and killed by the intruders. Kevin is also killed, but not before subduing one agent, as well as yelling for Nathan to run. Nathan runs but returns for Karen, who is now captured by the remaining agent. Nathan overpowers the agent and rescues Karen, he attempts to find out who the man is, but is suddenly forced out of the house because a bomb planted there is about to detonate.Taylor Lautner and Lily Collins in Abduction (2011)The blast injures Karen, so Nathan takes her to the hospital and attempts to contact the police. His call is intercepted by CIA operative Frank Burton (Alfred Molina), who tells Nathan he is in danger and he will send two men to collect him. Nathan is suspicious and while he is trying to make sense of it all, Dr. Bennett appears and helps him and Karen escape. While driving away, Dr. Bennett explains that Nathan’s biological father, Martin (Dermot Mulroney), stole an encrypted list of 25 corrupt CIA operatives from the Serbian terrorist Nikola Kozlow (Michael Nyqvist) when Nathan was 3: Kozlow then planned on abducting Nathan to coerce Martin to hand over the list. Nathan had been given to his adoptive parents to protect him. Kozlow used the website to claim Nathan as the missing child Steven Price in order to find him. Dr. Bennett gives Nathan the address of a safe house in Arlington, Virginia and tells him to trust only his biological father Martin and a man named Paul Rasmus. Kozlow’s men follow them, but Bennett is able to help them escape. Meanwhile, Burton is warned by his superior to end the situation as soon as possible once he learns of the involvement of Bennett, who is revealed to be a former CIA operative.Taylor Lautner and Lily Collins in Abduction (2011)Arriving at the safehouse: the two obtain money, a gun, a photo of Nathan’s biological mother Lorna Price (Elisabeth Röhm), and a cell phone. Karen tries to call her family, but her call is intercepted by Burton and the CIA, forcing them to flee. Finding the address for his mother, the pair discover the address is a cemetery and that Lorna has died. Nathan and Karen visit her grave and find fresh flowers there, and, according to the graveyard attendant, the sender is Paul Rasmus, who lives in Nebraska. The two take an Amtrak passenger train to get there using fake IDs provided by their friend Gilly (Denzel Whitaker). En route they confess their feelings for each other and share a passionate kiss. They are unaware that they are being followed by Kozlow’s right-hand man who abducts Karen when she goes out for food. He leaves her bound and gagged with duct tape in a separate room, but she frees herself by using a piece of broken glass. Nathan fights the right-hand man and he throws him out the window. After the train stops the two make a run for it. Burton’s team finds Kozlow’s henchman and tracks them down.Taylor Lautner and Lily Collins in Abduction (2011)Burton explains the data that Martin had stolen contains Burton’s name on the list. As Burton tries to play that off, the agents are attacked by Kozlow’s snipers. Nathan and Karen take off in a car before they can be caught. As they flee, the cell phone from Kozlow’s man rings, the caller is Kozlow and he threatens to kill Karen’s parents if Nathan does not hand over the data. Nathan gets Kozlow to agree to make the transaction at a Pittsburgh Pirates baseball game at their home stadium, the PNC Park.Taylor Lautner in Abduction (2011)Nathan works with Gilly to obtain tickets and secures a gun to one of the seats with the intent to kill Kozlow. Martin calls Nathan and warns him off, but Nathan refuses to listen. When Kozlow arrives, Karen takes Kozlow’s photo so Nathan can recognize him. The two meet and Kozlow tells Nathan how he killed his mother when Nathan was 3 after she refused to give up Martin’s location. Kozlow grabs the gun from Nathan and demands the list, Nathan bolts and Kozlow gives chase, followed by CIA operatives who have seen them in the crowd. Nathan is able to escape and Kozlow is killed by Martin. Burton, his superior and his agents arrive. Burton asks for the cell phone, promising to give the decrypted results to his superior. However, Martin had warned his superior about Burton’s corruption and takes the phone himself while Burton is taken into custody. Martin calls Nathan, apologizing for not being the father he should have been, Nathan asks him to show himself but Martin refuses. Bennett arrives with Karen and says she has arranged for Nathan to live with her until he decides what to pursue in his life. As the movie ends, Nathan and Karen go on a date in the empty PNC Park.Taylor Lautner in Abduction (2011)OK, we got to face that Abduction is not a ground-breaking title, but it’s far from trash. It’s a fine movie besides some goofs that you will only notice if you are watch every single scene several times. There is no riddles, nothing to put you trying to figure it out. A fast pacing movie enjoyable after a day at work. Twilight haters are being too harsh on the reviews, Abduction was never supposed to win an academy awards, but it’s not a waste of time neither money if you are looking for a light action movie.

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REVIEW: RAMPART

 

CAST

Woody Harrelson (War For The Planet of The Apes)
Ned Beatty (Superman)
Ben Foster (The Punisher)
Anne Heche (Spread)
Ice Cube (21 Jump Street)
Cynthia Nikon (Hannibal)
Sigourney Weaver (Alien)
Robin Wright (Wonder WOman)
Steve Buscemi (Reservoir Dogs0
Brie Larson (Kong: Skull Island)
Don Creech (8MM)
Jon Bernthal (The Accountant)
Jon Foster (Brotherhood)
Robert Wisdom (Prison Break)
Audra McDonald (Beauty and The Beast)
Francis Capra (Veronica Mars)

Woody Harrelson in Rampart (2011)The film opens as Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) Officer Dave Brown (Harrelson) patrols the Rampart Division. Brown is a 24-year veteran of the force, who previously served in the Vietnam War. While training a new officer, he roughs up a suspect to find the location of a meth lab. After work, he goes home to his two daughters and two ex-wives, who are also sisters (Heche and Nixon). After dinner, he goes to a piano bar where he picks up a stranger and has a one night stand.Woody Harrelson in Rampart (2011)The next day, he is t-boned in his patrol car. When he checks on the driver who hit him, the driver flees from his car, hitting Brown with his door as he exits. When Brown catches the driver, he brutally beats him, and the assault is captured by a bystander. The video creates another controversy for the LAPD, which is already besieged by the Rampart scandal. The Assistant District Attorney (Weaver) urges Brown to simply retire. He refuses and outlines his defense. Over the course of the film, it is revealed that Brown studied law and failed the bar exam, but he remains extremely knowledgeable about case law.Woody Harrelson in Rampart (2011)Back at the piano bar, Brown picks up a lawyer named Linda (Wright), after first determining that she is not surveilling him. Later he meets with ex-cop Hartshorn (Beatty), who suggests that Brown was set up to distract from the Rampart scandal. As the LAPD exerts more pressure on Brown, he retains legal counsel. Soon after, his ex-wives ask him to leave their houses so that they can sell them. Brown meets again with Hartshorn and mentions his need for cash. Hartshorn tips him off to a high stakes card game happening later that night at the Crystal Market. While Brown surveils the card game, it is knocked off by two armed men. Brown pursues the men. He kills one of them and lets the other go. He then stages the scene to make it look like he was shot at. He realizes that a homeless man nicknamed “General” (Foster) witnessed the whole thing from his wheelchair. As another investigation into Brown heats up, he goes to a hotel and blackmails the concierge into giving him a room by threatening to arrest the concierge for running a prostitution ring in the hotel. Next, he blackmails a pharmacist into giving him an assortment of drugs.Woody Harrelson in Rampart (2011)When he meets with Hartshorn to give him a cut of the money from the card game, Brown asks for the source of Hartshorn’s tip about the game. He suspects that he was set up again. Hartshorn refuses to name his source. Brown then meets with General in a parking lot to make sure that he will not testify about witnessing the shooting. The next day, an investigator with the District Attorney, Kyle Timkins (Cube) surveils Brown, who confronts him. Brown insists that he is not a racist, merely a misanthrope. Brown grows increasingly paranoid and reliant on drugs as the pressure on him mounts. When he meets with Hartshorn again, he pulls a gun and accuses Hartshorn of setting him up. The elderly man scuffles with Brown a little bit and then has a heart attack. Instead of calling an ambulance, Brown leaves him to die. Back at the hotel, Brown’s two daughters drop off some dry cleaning at his room, and he confesses to his younger daughter that everything she has heard about him is true.29_rampart2.w529.h352Brown summons Timkins to a meeting and tapes a confession in front of him. He admits that he has been a dirty cop, and that in 1987, he killed a business acquaintance. He justified the murder because he knew the man was a serial rapist, which is why he got away with the extrajudicial killing. Timkins refuses the confession, insisting that he will arrest Brown for his most recent murder. The film ends with Brown revisiting his family and staring at his elder daughter on the front porch before disappearing into the night.WoodyHarrelson_RampartFull credit to Harrelson and the cast for the mesmerizing performances. There are moments in this film that will stay with you after the film ends.

REVIEW: GHOSTBUSTERS II

 

CAST

Harold Raimis (Year One)
Bill Murray (St. Vincent)
Dan Aykroyd (Evolution)
Ernie Hudson (The Wrong Guys)
Sigourney Weaver (Galaxy Quest)
Annie Potts (Pretty In Pink)
Rick Moranis (Spaceballs)
Peter MacNicol (Agents of SHIELD)
Harris Yullin (Training Day)
David Margulies (Ace Ventura)
Kurt Fuller (The Good Wife)
Wilhelm von Homburg (Stroszek)
Mary Ellen Trainor (Roswell)
Cheech Marin (Machete)
Brian Doyle-Murray (Groundhog Day)
Kevin Dunn (Samantha Who?)
Max Von Sydow (Conan The Barbarian)

After saving New York City from the demi-god Gozer, the Ghostbusters—Peter Venkman, Egon Spengler, Ray Stantz, and Winston Zeddemore—were sued by several city and state agencies for the property damage. Rather than face financial ruin, they accepted a restraining order barring them from operating as paranormal investigators and eliminators—forcing them out of business. In the eyes of the city, they are now considered frauds.

Five years later, Ray owns an occult bookstore and works as an unpopular children’s entertainer with Winston; Egon has returned to Columbia University to conduct experiments into human emotion; and Peter hosts a pseudo-psychic television show. Peter’s former girlfriend Dana Barrett has had a son, Oscar, with a violinist whom she married then divorced when he received an offer to join the London Symphony Orchestra. In order to take care of her baby, Dana quit performing and now works as a restorer at the fictional Manhattan Museum of Art, working to prepare a malevolent-looking portrait of a legendary sixteenth-century tyrant named Vigo the Carpathian of Moldavia for an upcoming exhibition. After an incident in which Oscar’s baby carriage is controlled by an unseen force and drawn to a busy intersection, Dana turns to the Ghostbusters for help. Meanwhile, Dana’s colleague Dr. Janosz Poha has become increasingly obsessed with the glowering image of Vigo in the painting and falls under its spell. Vigo, whose spirit inhabits the painting, orders Janosz to locate a child that he can possess, allowing him to return to life on the New Year. Janosz, infatuated with Dana, offers to bring baby Oscar to Vigo in exchange for Dana, a deal which Vigo accepts.

The Ghostbusters’ investigation leads them to illegally excavate First Avenue at the point where the baby carriage stopped. Lowered underneath, Ray discovers a vast river of pink slime filling an abandoned pneumatic transit line. Attacked by the slime after obtaining a sample, Ray causes a city-wide blackout by accidentally kicking a cast iron pipe that breaks, falls, and shorts out an electric cable. After this, the Ghostbusters are arrested by the NYPD. Ineffectually defended by Louis Tully, they are found guilty of violating the restraining order by Judge Wexler, aka “The Hammer.” Before they are taken to Riker’s Island, Wexler angrily berates them. In response, the slime recovered by Ray and taken as evidence explodes, releasing the ghosts of two murderers that the judge had condemned to death that proceed to devastate the courtroom. The Ghostbusters capture the ghosts in return for the cancellation of the restraining order.

Later, the slime invades Dana’s apartment via the bathtub and attacks her and Oscar. She seeks refuge with Peter, and the two begin to renew their relationship. Investigating the ‘psychomagnatheric’ slime and Vigo’s history, the Ghostbusters discover that it reacts to emotions; it can be charged positively or negatively. They suspect that it has been generated by the negative attitudes of New Yorkers. While Peter and Dana have dinner together, Egon, Ray, and Winston explore the underground river of slime. While measuring its depth, Winston gets pulled into the slime flow, and Ray and Egon jump in after him. After they escape back to the surface Ray and Winston begin an angry argument, but Egon realizes that they are being influenced by the slime, so they strip off their clothes. They also learn the river is flowing underground directly to the museum where Dana works.

The Ghostbusters go to the mayor with their suspicions, but are dismissed; the mayor’s assistant, Jack Hardemeyer, has them committed to a psychiatric hospital to protect the mayor’s campaign for governor. Meanwhile, a spirit resembling Janosz as a nanny kidnaps Oscar from Peter’s apartment, and Dana pursues them to the museum alone. After she enters, the museum is covered with a cocoon of impenetrable slime. New Year’s Eve sees a sudden increase of supernatural activity as the slime rises from the subway line and onto the city streets, causing widespread paranormal activity with ghosts attacking citizens. In response, the mayor fires Hardemeyer and has the Ghostbusters released. After heading to the museum, they are unable to breach the slime barrier with their proton packs. Determining that they need a powerful symbol to rally the citizens and weaken the slime, the Ghostbusters use positively charged mood slime and a remix of “Higher and Higher” to animate the Statue of Liberty and pilot it through the streets before the cheering crowds. As they arrive at the museum, the slime begins to recede and they use the Statue’s flaming torch to break through a skylight to attack Vigo and Janosz.

Janosz is neutralized with positively charged mood slime, but Vigo immobilizes the Ghostbusters and attempts to transfer into Oscar’s body. The positive feelings accompanying a chorus of “Auld Lang Syne” by the citizens outside weakens Vigo, returning him to the painting and freeing the Ghostbusters. Vigo momentarily possesses Ray, and the other Ghostbusters attack him with a combination of proton streams and positively charged mood slime. This destroys Vigo and changes the painting to a likeness of the four Ghostbusters standing protectively around Oscar. Outside, the Ghostbusters receive a standing ovation from the crowd and, at a later ceremony to restore the Statue, the Key to the City from the mayor.Ghostbusters II hasn’t been particularly well-received, even despite its more family-friendly tone and message about the folly of mean-spiritedness. But it’s just a good sequel, nonetheless, not bad, not superior to the original, maybe on par with the original, but it’s just really good fun.

REVIEW: ALIEN: RESURRECTION

 

CAST

Sigourney Weaver (Galaxy Quest)
Winona Ryder (Star Trek)
Michael Wincott (The Crow)
Dan Hedaya (The Book of Daniel)
J. E. Freeman (Miller’s Crossing)
Brad Dourif (Curse of Chucky)
Raymond Cruz (My Name Is Earl)
Kim Flowers (Another Day In Paradise)
Gary Dourdan (CSI)
Ron Perlman (Hellboy)
Leland Orser (Seven)

In 2379, two hundred years after the events of Alien 3, military scientists on the space vessel USM Auriga create a clone of Ellen Ripley using DNA from blood samples taken before her death. The Alien queen’s DNA was mixed in with Ripley’s, and the clone grows up with an embryo inside it. The scientists extract the embryo, raise it and collect its eggs. The Ripley clone is kept alive for further study. As a result of the alien’s DNA inside her, she develops enhanced strength and reflexes, has acidic blood and a psychic link with the Aliens. Also, the alien’s genetic memory allows the clone to have some of Ripley’s memories.

A group of mercenaries, Elgyn, Johner, Christie, Vriess, Hillard and Call, arrive at Auriga on their ship Betty. They deliver several kidnapped humans in stasis. The military scientists use the humans as hosts for the Aliens, raising several adult Aliens for study.

The Betty crew soon encounters Ripley. Call recognizes her name and tries to kill her, suspecting she may be used to create more Aliens. The Aliens have already matured and escape confinement by killing off one of their own and using the acidic blood to burn through their enclosures. They damage the Auriga and kill the crew members who do not evacuate, including General Perez and Elgyn. Military scientist Dr. Wren reveals that the ship’s default command in an emergency is to return to Earth. Realizing this will unleash the Aliens on Earth, Ripley, the mercenaries, Wren, a Marine named DiStephano and surviving Alien host Purvis decide to head for the Betty and use it to destroy the Auriga. Along the way, Ripley encounters the grotesque products of failed attempts to clone Ripley. The surviving one begs Ripley to mercy kill her, and she complies.

As the group makes their way through the damaged ship, they swim through a flooded kitchen. They are chased by two Aliens. One is killed, while the other snatches Hillard. As they escape the kitchen, the Alien returns and blinds Christie, who sacrifices himself to kill the Alien so the others can escape. After Wren betrays the group, Call is revealed to be an android. Using her ability to interface with the Auriga’s systems, Call sets it on a collision course with Earth, hoping to destroy the Aliens in the crash. She cuts off Wren’s escape route, and directs the Aliens towards him. Ripley is captured by the Aliens, while the others head for the Betty. Wren shoots Purvis and takes Call hostage, demanding that she abort the collision. An injured Purvis attacks Wren and forces his head to his chest just as the Alien embryo he is carrying bursts through his ribcage, causing it to go through Wren’s head and kill them both. The survivors shoot the embryo.
Ripley is taken to the Alien nest, where the Queen, now possessing a womb as a result of the genetic mixture, gives birth to a Newborn, a Xenomorph with human traits. The hybrid Alien recognizes Ripley as its mother, kills the queen Alien and Dr. Jonathan Gediman, a scientist previously captured and cocooned. Ripley takes advantage of the distraction to escape and makes her way to the Betty.The Newborn reaches the Betty and attacks Call. It kills DeStephano when he tries to help her. Ripley finds her way onto the ship and saves Call by distracting the Newborn. Using her acidic blood, Ripley melts the glass of a window and pushes the Newborn towards the hole. It is violently sucked through the hole due to decompression. The countdown on the Auriga continues as the survivors escape in the Betty. The Auriga collides with Earth, causing a large explosion. Call and Ripley look down at Earth, and when Call asks what Ripley wants to do next, she says, “I’m a stranger here myself.” In an alternate ending that is used in some extended adaptations, the Betty lands in a ruined Paris.Alien: Resurrection is a good film, but, as keeping with part 3 rather than parts 1 and 2, it’s better more as another `stand-alone’ film. An Alien film shouldn’t just be `good,’ it should be absolutely amazing, setting the standards for adult sci-fi/horror to come. This one is a nice effort at the mistakes made in part 3, but it’s still inferior to Aliens.

REVIEW: ALIEN 3

CAST

Sigourney Weaver (Galaxy Quest)
Charles S. Dutton (Mimic)
Charles Dance (Game of Thrones)
Brian Glover (An American Werewolf In London)
Ralph Brown (The Crying Game)
Paul McGann (Queen of The Damned)
Danny Webb (Locke)
Lance Henriksen (Hellraiser 8)
Pete Postlethwaite (Solomon Kane)
Holt McCallany (Heroes)

A fire starts aboard the Colonial Marine spaceship Sulaco. The computer launches an escape pod containing Ellen Ripley, the young girl Newt, Hicks, and the damaged android Bishop; all four are in cryonic stasis. Scans of the crew’s cryotubes show an Alien facehugger attached to one of the members. The pod crash-lands on Fiorina “Fury” 161, a foundry facility and penal colony inhabited by male inmates with histories of physical and sexual violence. Inmates recover the pod and its passengers.

Ripley is awakened by Clemens, the prison doctor, who informs her that she is the sole survivor. Ripley is warned by the prison warden, Harold Andrews, that her presence may have disruptive effects. Ripley insists that Clemens perform an autopsy on Newt; he asks what they are looking for in the body of a girl who had obviously drowned. Ripley lies to him that they are investigating a possible case of cholera, but secretly fears that Newt has been impregnated with an alien embryo. Clemens firmly responds by stating that there hasn’t been a case of cholera reported for 200 years. The autopsy is conducted and no embryo is found. A funeral is held for Newt and Hicks and their bodies are cremated in the facility furnace. In another section of the prison, an alien bursts out of the chest of a prison dog named Spike. The Alien kills several members of the colony and returns outcast prisoner Golic to his previously psychopathic state. Ripley re-activates Bishop, who confirms that an Alien came with them to Fiorina in the escape pod. Ripley informs Andrews of her encounters with the Aliens and suggests everyone work together to hunt down and kill it. Andrews, highly skeptical, does not believe her story, but explains that the facility has no weapons; their only hope is the rescue ship being sent for Ripley by the Weyland-Yutani Corporation.

The Alien surprises Ripley and Clemens in the prison infirmary, whereupon it kills Clemens. It examines Ripley, but spares her and retreats. Andrews orders Aaron to take her back to the infirmary, but he is (ironically) ambushed and killed by the Alien. Ripley rallies the inmates and proposes they pour flammable toxic waste into the ventilation system and ignite it to flush out the Alien. However, the Alien’s intervention causes an explosion and several inmates are killed. With Aaron’s help, Ripley, who has not been feeling well this whole time, scans herself using the escape pod’s medical equipment and discovers the embryo of an Alien Queen growing inside her. She also discovers that Weyland-Yutani hopes to turn the Queen embryo and the adult Alien into biological weapon.

Deducing that the Alien will not kill her because of the embryo she carries, Ripley begs Dillon to kill her; he agrees only if she helps the inmates kill the adult creature first. They form a plan to lure the creature into the foundry’s molding facility, trap it via a series of closing doors, and drown it in molten lead. The bait-and-chase plan results in the death of every prisoner except Morse and Dillon. Dillon remains in the mold to distract the Alien, allowing it to tear him apart as Morse pours the molten lead onto them. The Alien is covered in molten metal but escapes the mold; Ripley activates the fire sprinklers, causing the Alien’s exoskeleton to cool rapidly and shatter, killing it.

The Weyland–Yutani commando team arrives, including a man who looks identical to Bishop and explains that he is Bishop’s creator. He tries to persuade Ripley to undergo surgery to remove the Queen embryo, which he claims will be destroyed. Knowing he is lying, Ripley refuses and steps back onto a mobile platform, which Morse positions over the furnace. The Weyland–Yutani team shoot Morse in the leg in a late effort to stop him; Aaron strikes the man with a wrench and is shot dead. The commando team begs Ripley to let them have the “magnificent specimen” but their efforts are in vain. Ripley throws herself into the furnace, just as the infant Alien Queen begins to erupt from her chest. Ripley grabs it to prevent it from escaping as they both fall into the furnace to their deaths. The facility is closed and the only surviving inmate, Morse, is led away.Panned by many for it’s undoubtedly bleak tone, butchered by the studio so the film didn’t make cinematic sense, and unappreciated at the time by most of the public, Alien 3 has gone on to be re-evaluated by many as, if not a masterpiece, at least a very fine example of the sci fi genre. It has now been re-edited (not by Fincher who has disowned the film) to include a whole host of originally discarded scenes that flesh out the story. The wonderful sunset bathed beach scenes with Ripley covered in oil and almost dead, saved by doctor Charles Dance, are beautifully shot. The dead bull scene is back and is much more powerful than the one it replaces. A whole plot-line regarding an inmate’s relationship with the Monster is reintroduced to great effect. This is a major reworking of the film and not just at weak here and there. Cast members were hired again to re-voice scenes for the restoration and to increase sound quality in some areas. The running time is increased by about 25 minutes.

REVIEW: ALIENS

CAST

Sigourney Weaver (Galaxy Quest)
Michael Biehn (The Terminator)
Paul Reiser (Life After Beth)
Lance Henriksen (Hellraiser 8)
Bill Paxton (Agents of SHIELD)
William Hope (Submerged)
Ricco Ross (Death Wish 3)
Jenette Goldstein (Titantic)

Ellen Ripley is rescued after drifting through space in stasis for 57 years. She is debriefed by her employers at the Weyland-Yutani Corporation over the destruction of her ship, the USCSS Nostromo; they are skeptical of her claims that an Alien killed the ship’s crew and forced her to destroy the ship.

The exomoon LV-426, where the Nostromo encountered the alien eggs, is now home to the terraforming colony Hadleys Hope. When contact is lost with Hadleys Hope, Weyland-Yutani representative Carter Burke and Colonial Marine Lieutenant Gorman ask Ripley to accompany Burke and a Colonial Marine unit to investigate the disturbance. Traumatized by her encounter with the Alien, Ripley initially refuses, but she relents after experiencing recurring nightmares about the creature; she makes Burke promise to destroy, and not capture, the Aliens. Aboard the spaceship USS Sulaco, she is introduced to the Colonial Marines, their commanding officer Lieutenant Gorman, and the android Bishop, toward whom Ripley is initially hostile following her experience with the traitorous android Ash aboard the Nostromo.

A dropship delivers the expedition to the surface of LV-426, where they find the colony deserted. Inside, they find makeshift barricades and signs of a struggle, but no bodies; two live facehuggers in containment tanks in the medical lab; and a survivor, a traumatized young girl nicknamed Newt who used the ventilation system to evade capture or death. The crew uses the colony’s computer to locate the colonists grouped beneath the fusion powered atmosphere processing station. They head to the location, descending into corridors covered in Alien secretions.

At the center of the station, the marines find the colonists cocooned, serving as incubators for the Aliens’ offspring. When the marines kill a newborn Alien, the Aliens are roused and ambush the marines, killing and capturing several. When the inexperienced Gorman panics, Ripley takes control of their vehicle and rams it through the nest to rescue marines Hicks, Hudson, and Vasquez. Hicks orders the dropship to recover the survivors, but a stowaway Alien kills the pilots, causing it to crash into the station. Ripley, Newt, Gorman, Burke and the remaining marines barricade themselves inside the colony command center.

Ripley discovers that Burke deliberately sent the colonists to investigate the derelict spaceship where the Nostromo crew first encountered the Alien eggs, believing he could become wealthy by recovering Alien specimens for use as biological weapons. She threatens to expose him, but Bishop informs the group of a greater danger: the power plant was damaged by the dropship crash, and will soon explode with the force of a 40-megaton thermonuclear weapon. He volunteers to crawl through several hundred meters of piping conduits to reach the colony’s transmitter and remotely pilot the Sulaco’s remaining dropship to the surface.

Ripley and Newt fall asleep in the medical laboratory, awakening to find themselves locked in the room with the two facehuggers, which have been released from their tanks. Ripley triggers a fire alarm to alert the marines, who rescue them and kill the creatures. Ripley accuses Burke of releasing the facehuggers so that they would impregnate her and Newt, allowing him to smuggle the Alien embryos past Earth’s quarantine, and of planning to kill the rest of the marines in hypersleep during the return trip so that no one could contradict his version of events. Before the marines can kill Burke, the electricity is cut and Aliens assault through the ceiling. Hudson, Burke, Vasquez and Gorman are all killed and Newt is captured.

Ripley and an injured Hicks reach Bishop in the second dropship, but Ripley refuses to abandon Newt. The group arrives at the processing station, allowing a heavily armed Ripley to enter the hive and rescue Newt. As they escape, the two encounter the Alien queen in her egg chamber. Ripley destroys the eggs, enraging the queen, who tears free from her ovipositor. Pursued by the queen, Ripley and Newt rendezvous with Bishop and Hicks on the dropship. All four escape moments before the station explodes with the colony consumed by the nuclear blast.

On the Sulaco, the group discover the Alien queen stowed away on the dropship’s landing gear. She emerges and tears Bishop in half. The queen advances on Newt, but Ripley clashes with her using an exosuit cargo-loader and expels it through an airlock into space. Ripley, Newt, Hicks and the badly damaged Bishop enter hypersleep for the return trip to Earth.This film cannot be praised enough. Although there are those who feel it is inferior to the first because it has more action and supposedly weaker characterisation, it has to be said that the two films are different entities, the first a horror, the second a sci-fi action. Like The Terminator, Cameron puts in many effective scares so that it transcends the genre, becoming something more.

REVIEW: ALIEN

CAST

Sigourney Weaver (Galaxy Quest)
Tom Skerritt (Poison Ivy)
Veronica Cartwright (The Witches of Eastwick)
Harry Dean Stanton (Avengers Assemble)
John Hurt (Hellboy)
Ian Holm (The Hobbit)
Yaphet Kotto (Midnight Run)

The commercial spacecraft Nostromo is on a return trip to Earth with a seven-member crew in stasis: Captain Dallas, Executive Officer Kane, Navigator Lambert, Science Officer Ash, Warrant Officer Ripley, and Engineers Parker and Brett. Detecting a mysterious transmission, possibly a distress signal, from a nearby planetoid, the ship’s computer, Mother, awakens the crew. Following standard company policy for such situations, the Nostromo lands on the planetoid and Dallas, Kane, and Lambert head out to investigate, damaging their ship upon landing in dust. They discover the signal is coming from a derelict alien spacecraft. Inside, they find the remains of a large alien creature whose ribcage appears to have exploded from the inside.

On the Nostromo, Ripley determines that the transmission is not a distress signal but a warning. In the alien ship, Kane discovers a chamber containing hundreds of eggs. As he inspects one, a creature springs out, spits acid through his space helmet and attaches itself to his face. Dallas and Lambert carry the unconscious Kane back to the Nostromo. As acting senior officer, Ripley refuses to let them aboard, citing quarantine regulations, but Ash violates protocol by overriding Ripley’s lock and letting them in. The crew are unable to remove the creature from Kane’s face, as its grip is strong and its blood is an extremely corrosive acid. It eventually lets go, crawls away, and dies.

The crew repair the ship and lift off. Kane awakens and seems healthy, but during the crew’s final meal before re-entering stasis, he chokes and convulses in pain before a small alien creature bursts from his chest, killing him, and escapes into the depths of the ship to molt. Since attacking the creature with conventional weapons could result in its corrosive blood breaching the ship’s hull, the crew attempts to locate and capture it with motion trackers, nets, electric prods, and flamethrowers.

Brett is sent to look for the crew’s cat, Jones, and the now fully grown alien attacks him and disappears with his body into the air shafts. After a heated discussion, the group devises a plan to jettison the creature out of the ship. Dallas enters the Nostromo’s labyrinthine ventilation shafts, intending to force the alien into an airlock, but it ambushes him. Lambert, realizing the alien is killing the crew one by one, implores the others to escape in the ship’s shuttle. Now in command, Ripley explains that the shuttle will not support four people, and recommends that they continue with Dallas’ plan of flushing the alien out.

Accessing Mother, Ripley discovers that Ash has secretly been ordered to return the alien to the crew’s employers, who consider the crew expendable. When Ripley confronts Ash, he tries to choke her to death. Parker intervenes and knocks off Ash’s head, revealing him to be an android. Parker reanimates Ash’s head, and Ripley interrogates him. They learn he was assigned to the Nostromo to convince the crew to capture the creature and return it for analysis, even at the expense of the human personnel. Ash taunts them about their chances of survival against the “perfect organism.” Parker turns a flamethrower on Ash.

Ripley, Lambert and Parker agree to set the Nostromo to self-destruct and escape in the shuttle. However, Parker and Lambert are ambushed and killed by the alien while gathering life-support supplies. Ripley initiates the self-destruct sequence and heads for the shuttle with Jones, but the alien blocks her path. She retreats and unsuccessfully attempts to abort the self-destruct sequence, then returns to retrieve Jones, finding the alien gone. She narrowly escapes in the shuttle as the Nostromo explodes.

As she prepares to enter stasis, Ripley discovers the Alien is aboard the shuttle. She dons a spacesuit and opens the shuttle’s airlock, causing explosive decompression which forces the Alien into the shuttle’s open doorway. She propels it into space by shooting it with a grappling hook, but the gun catches in the closing door, tethering the alien to the shuttle. Ripley activates the engines, blasting the alien into space. After recording the ship’s final log entry, she places herself and Jones into stasis for the voyage home.Quite simply one of the best films ever made.