Author Topic: Alien 3 (Caution: this thread contains heavy spoilers.)  (Read 7915 times)

Paul Phoenix

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Re: Alien 3
« Reply #40 on: June 05, 2015, 02:52:17 PM »
Alien 3 is not a return to what made Alien special... not at ALL.....

You take Alien, and you have almost a half hour of nothing but character moments.... you get to know each player... Lambert, Dallas, Ash, Kane, etc.....
You enter the derilect spacecraft, you have no idea what's going on, then the facehugger.... you are on the edge of your seats... then the dinner scene....

Alien 3 had none of that.... again, you take Ripley, now the only likable character left, and really, the only one you are rooting for.  And take away the only aspect that would make this movie interesting, the threat of the Alien.... the Alien won't kill her, so she's free to do whatever... yeah, she has that Alien inside of her, but we all saw the foreshadowing of Newt and Hicks going in the flames, we knew that she would do the same.

Then you add a bunch of lookalike, unlikable, uninteresting, uncharecterized inmates.... we end up routing for the beast to kill these guys off.....

the movie is a freaking mess from beginning to end... and to start it by killing two main players just to go "look what we did" is just freaking sloppy story telling.... it wasn't brave, it was just stupid..... the first two Alien films carried an emotional wieght to them, your invested in the characters... then you have Alien cubed, and the most shocking event takes place in the first 4 minutes off screen..... you can't punch your audience in the stomach like that, and expect them to recover, then reinvest in unlikable characters....

remember that little girl, and marine you routed for... yeah, they are gone, but now we want you to feel the same for some rapists, and murders.... 

Alien Cubed just shows that Fox has no idea how to handle a franchise.. I mean shit. look at the X-Men films... same EXACT shit... two good films, followed by a crap third one that kills off characters it shouldn't.... now it's time for lame spin-offs that don't work either....

There was no need for Alien Cubed to have ended up this way... it was over 4 years since Aliens, so why was Alien Cubed rushed?  They needed to spend more time on the sreen play... instead of managling a script about space monks (the original concept)...

I didn't want Aliens 2.... I wanted a gothic horror film, that contained wieght... not a soap opera that was depressing....
Yep. Looks like you and I can't agree with anything at all. Heh. Then again, they say opposites attract, so who knows, eh?

For starters, no. Just no. Aside from Ripley, there's also Dillon the spiritual leader of the group who, by the way, made an incredible speech that summed up why Newt and Hicks had to be killed.

Quote
“Why? Why are the innocent punished? Why the sacrifice? Why the pain? There aren't any promises. Nothing's certain. Only that some get called, some get saved.”
I'll get to the nihilism of this film later. It's my favorite part of the movie.

Then there's Clemens, the ex-drug addict/inmate seeking redemption as a doctor of all things. Ironic yet poetic. So that's two down, and not just Ripley.

The rest of the crew is, as you say, unlikable and uninteresting, I agree. But no. I didn't root for the beast to kill everyone off, because these two characters were certainly decent enough to replace Hicks (a soldier grunt/empty romantic interest plot-device) and Newt (an annoying child and empty plot-device #2 whose sole purpose was to develop Ripley while lacking character herself), decent enough to salvage this mess, and enough to make it an enjoyable watch... for me. This is coming from a big fan of Aliens too, by the way.

Now, as to why Alien 3 is my favorite of the series (or at least preferable over Aliens, a loud action blockbuster; Scott's Alien, on the other hand, is debatable). I don't know much about 'gothic horror' (though I do know goths are pretty morbid in their own way), but I felt that the bleak, depressing tone at the beginning of the movie (yes, the beginning, not the entire movie) worked really well in combination with the theme of redemption and salvation that's the end of this movie, where Ripley is finally set free from the demon that's the Xenomorph itself (notice how my avatar, the icon of Alien 3, is shaped like a serpent, the Devil himself in the Bible). That was, until Resurrection came and screw this wonderful message up.

As you can see from the concept art that didn't make it to even the Assembly Cut, Alien 3 is about Ripley in purgatory. It's a religious tale of death and rebirth (note the funeral of Hicks/Newt synchronizing with the Xenomorph's birth). If this movie had been released yesterday in 2015, and I had just only watched it, I would probably find the death of those two made for 'cheap shock value' as well. But after reexamining the movie for years, especially the Assembly Cut, I'm confident to say that the death of those two is essential to the plot. While it probably screwed Alien fans over, I don't think that's as important a factor as telling a good story.

Ripley has been through a lot of crap over the course of three movies. She's not like your average action heroes of invulnerability. She's very human, and the kind of anguish someone as human as her had to go through strikes emotions of anger and fury in us the audience, which is something important because we needed to learn fast the idea that this is hell. Not only did she lose her only family, but she was nearly gang-raped, and she then found out she's got a Xenomorph queen stuck inside of her as well. Such mockery from the powers that be is insulting, especially when you consider that the only who caused such agony in the first place is the closest thing to a family she has left - the Xenomorph. Insult built upon insult. And yet, it's crucial to further character development. Unexpected and horrible tragedies happen in real life. Why shouldn't it happen to Ripley?

Quote from: Kurt Vonnegut in "Eight Rules for Writing Fiction"
Be a sadist. No matter how sweet and innocent your leading characters, make awful things happen to them—in order that the reader may see what they are made of."

The Xenomorph is a perfect killer without remorse or emotions. It doesn't kill with intent or delusions of morality. It doesn't have a meaning. It just kills. It's a force of nature, a force of nihilism. In a world of nihilism, in a world without meaning, where would our heroine go? What would she do? Give up? What would a protagonist do when faced with one of the biggest challenges in any story - a lack of motivation to live?

A lot of people mistook 'nihilism' for what it means. Friedrich Nietzsche was hailed as the father of nihilism when he's actually an anti-nihilist himself. Because without darkness, the light won't shine as brightly. The study of nihilism has often been more about anti-nihilism than anything else, the pondering of, if life is truly meaningless, can we still live on? Just because a story is covered in utter despair doesn't mean it can't also be about hope and salvation.

In the earlier drafts of the script, Ripley truly contemplated suicide. It was that bad. But at the same, it was fascinating to explore whether if one could truly survive all that trauma being dumped on her. It's not just about the superficial sentimentality of seeing a hero triumph over all odds. I think it's more about the desire to believe that we ourselves as individuals can survive the hardships, because we want to be someone like that, to not lose, to not fail, fall. If Ripley had truly died without a proper cause in this movie, then I would have also called this movie a load of pretentious crap without a point. As it is now, with Ripley giving the Xenomorphs and Weyland Yutani the finger by sacrificing herself rather than let the bad guys win in a spectacular hoorah of an explosive ending, the bittersweet message left me with something hopeful.

Final note: While I associated the Xenomorph with both the Devil and nihilism, that's not necessary a contradiction. The Devil's supposed 'evil' is a human-crafted idea out of our morality. Where that evil comes from... there might not be a reason behind such 'evil' at all.
« Last Edit: June 05, 2015, 03:48:32 PM by Paul Phoenix »
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Junior

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Re: Alien 3 (Caution: this thread contains heavy spoilers.)
« Reply #41 on: June 05, 2015, 03:35:06 PM »
joker is not Junior. I'm cooler and still here  8). And I like Alien3 better than Aliens, so we can actually agree on how good Alien3 is. I like much of what you say here.
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Paul Phoenix

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Re: Alien 3 (Caution: this thread contains heavy spoilers.)
« Reply #42 on: June 05, 2015, 03:38:54 PM »
joker is not Junior. I'm cooler and still here  8). And I like Alien3 better than Aliens, so we can actually agree on how good Alien3 is. I like much of what you say here.
Hah, my bad. Finally! We can agree on something. 8) Sorry about the name-confusions. I do that even with people in real life.
"I used to think the worst thing in life was to end up all alone. It's not. The worst thing in life is ending up with people who make you feel all alone." - Lance Clayton (played by Robin Williams), World's Greatest Dad

Eternally seeking variety. 'Tis the spice of life for me.

 

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