Alien 3 appreciation thread

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by BarryS, Oct 25, 2002.

  1. BarryS

    BarryS Second Unit

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    This thread is for those of us in the minority who actually liked Alien 3. I count myself among the film's fans. I find it my second favorite in the series, right under Ridley Scott's original.
    I think Alien 3 is a wonderful change of pace after James Cameron's boisterous Aliens. I liked the return to the claustrophobic feel of the first movie. A small group of people versus one Alien. I know I'm in the vast minority, but I never really liked Cameron's Aliens all that much. I preferred the pace and structure of Ridley Scott's film, and David Fincher's Alien 3 hearkens back to the feel of it. It's a complex film, with subtleties that you begin to pick up on with repeated viewings. Also, you have the advantage of David Fincher's dazzling visual style. The Alien POV shots are very cool.
    As for criticism, the CGI Alien is not very convincing, but the physical puppet Alien looks great! The shot of Ripley up against the wall with the Alien six inches from her face is a great, great moment, an image that has stuck with me in the years since I first saw the trailer.
    I know as well that the film was rather botched by studio meddling, but it turned out rather well I thought. It would be even better if Fox would go back and restore the many cut scenes to flesh out the characters and create a more cohesive narrative. I'm hoping than an Alien 3 Director's Cut is on the way and I'm sure that Fincher would want to participate since he was shafted by the execs the first time around.
    If anyone else appreciates this movie, please don't be afraid to admit it! This is the place to express affection for Alien 3.
    My appy polly logies if a similar thread already exists, but typing the world "Alien" in the search box brings up about 3 million threads.
     
  2. Dean DeMass

    Dean DeMass Screenwriter

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    I love this film as well, it is my 3rd favorite in the series. [​IMG]
    However, I don't think we'll ever see a DC from Fincher on this one. He has publicly said that he did not want to revisit this film because of all the hell it caused him.
    -Dean-
     
  3. Lou Sytsma

    Lou Sytsma Producer

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    Indeed I enjoy this one as well. The DVD presentation greatly improved my appreciation of the movie. In the theatrical viewing I saw the movie was so dark it was difficult to make out what was happening. The DVD vastly improves the video presentation.

    My main beef with the movie still remains the callous jettisoning of Reese and Newt though. For those characters to go through so much in the previous movie and then be dismissed in the next so quickly leaves a bad taste that makes it difficult to invest yourself in the movie. Only on repeated viewings am I able to get by this and watch the rest of the movie without dwelling on the opening.
     
  4. Mikael Soderholm

    Mikael Soderholm Supporting Actor

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    Count me in as someone who likes this film as well (I also like the other two, we all know Alien is a trilogy, right?), the three films complement each other making it a great trilogy. As a matter of fact, so far this is the only film by Fincher that I actually do like...
     
  5. Andrew Chong

    Andrew Chong Supporting Actor

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    Call me a fan of all of the Alien movies. The great thing about each is that they contribute something new to the Alien mythology.

    For 3, it introduced (as mentioned) the Alien's POV (Point-Of-View) for the first time. Also significant, it cemented the Alien's ability to take on the physical structure and agility of its hosts, here a dog.
     
  6. Mark Zimmer

    Mark Zimmer Producer

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    Each of the Alien films has a very different tone, which I find refreshing in the same old same old world of sequels and franchises.
    I regret also the loss of Newt in particular; the loss of Hicks doesn't bother me as much, but I suppose the time lapse was too great to account for. But casting a new actress as Newt would have been less jarring.
    Other than that, though, I like Alien 3. Hopefully at some not-too-far-off date when Fox wants to milk the series some more we'll get to see Fincher's cut (I know, he says he doesn't want to revisit it, but opinions change over time).
    The best thing is returning to a single alien. One alien that you can't stop is horror, thousands of them that you can blow up at will is practically comedy. Cameron's hyperkinetic film has its merits, but the scale is out of proportion to the first film; 3 nicely returns to a more manageable (and thus more frightening) scale.
    But then again, I like Resurrection too. [​IMG]
     
  7. Simon Massey

    Simon Massey Cinematographer

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    I also loved this film when I first saw it, and liked the approach to the film after Aliens. I was also disappointed by the loss of Hicks and especially Newt, but was pleased that the film went in a different direction then just having the aliens come to earth for a special effects showdown. (though I imagine this is where the series would go next given the CGI advances)

    The alien POV was great as well, and Ripley's sacrifice and the final coda made a satisfactory conclusion to what should have really remained a trilogy. Whilst Resurrection has some interesting ideas, it is executed very poorly.
     
  8. Bhagi Katbamna

    Bhagi Katbamna Supporting Actor

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    Still waiting for the Crossroads appreciation thread...
     
  9. Geoff_D

    Geoff_D Supporting Actor

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    'Alien 3' and 'appreciation' in the same title? Well, it was bound to happen sometime. I love Alien3, I always have, and to know I'm not alone feels good. It appeals to me because the tone of Alien3 is so relentlessly dark, with barely a spark of humanity to light the way.
    The deeper religious subtext (which makes up the majority of the stuff Fox cut from the movie) would have given the movie another angle - and maybe alienated even more viewers in the process - but we'll never know. Aside from picking up a copy of the longer workprint from various 'sources', of course. [​IMG]
     
  10. Mattias Stridsman

    Mattias Stridsman Stunt Coordinator

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    Add me to the small group who really appreciate Alien 3. I'm a huge fan of the first 3 movies, and like Simon, I really think it should have remained a trilogy.

    I think Alien 3 took a brave new direction after Aliens, and added some great new things to the series (like the Alien POV mentioned above, religion and a more low-tech environment.)

    There are some things I don't like, most are minor things like the fire in the background when Ripley falls (the fire animation is looped, you can see that quite clearly) and the CGI shots look a bit...CGI.
     
  11. Steve Christou

    Steve Christou Long Member

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    WARNING SPOILERS AHEAD. READ AT YOUR PERIL.
    Lets be honest here, Alien3 has since been reappraised because David Fincher has gone on to make Se7en and Fight Club, but I distinctly remember when this film came out, there was uproar and hatred, it was the Antichrist, it betrayed every Alien fan going, Newt was dead, Hicks was dead, Bishop was.. not in the best of shape, and horror of horrors Ellen Ripley was dead too, woohoo! Let's Party!![​IMG]
    The first half was dull, but it did pick up when the alien started chasing the bald cons round endless corridors, hated the British accents and I'm British! I have the same accent! "You wankers!", "Fuck you!", and so on, laughed my arse off, when I first saw it.
    I'm sorry to say I preferred the mad bad gory 4th entry Alien Resurrection!!
    I give it [​IMG] [​IMG] out of [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  12. DavidAC

    DavidAC Stunt Coordinator

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    Well Aliens was so awsome for me that Alien 3 was bound to fail in meeting my expexctations in someway. What I did like was the music and the ending was a fitting way to close out the series(I kinda ignore Resurrection). I understand Fincher going back to roots of what Ridley Scott did in Alien but it seemed mostly like a horror gore fest than a sci-fi thriller. I also don't like how Hicks and Newt were casualy discarded.
     
  13. Blaine Skerry

    Blaine Skerry Second Unit

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  14. Terry St

    Terry St Second Unit

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    You can't fault the craftsmanship of Alien3. I think Roger Ebert described it as a really good looking bad movie. That summed it pretty well I thought. The plot isn't dumb, the cinematography is fantastic, the special effects are top notch, the acting is good, yet the theatrical release of this movie just fizzles for some reason.
    Perhaps it is because of the way character development was used like a blunt instrument to make the alien attacks seem worse. As soon as a given character gets a lot of lines the alien pops out of nowhere and dices him. (e.g. The doctor.) Any time you saw somebody other than ripley on screen it felt like they were expendable meat, not entirely unlike the anonymous redshirts on Star Trek. When I watch this movie I keep hearing "He's dead Jim." over and over in the back of my head. [​IMG]
    Some of the characters did seem very interesting, but they get diced long before we see any real development in most cases. The doctor's character did get fleshed out quite well about a split second before he got splattered. If the footage is there to flesh out the characters a little better a directors cut could be a great improvement. I'd buy it. [​IMG]
     
  15. Alex Spindler

    Alex Spindler Producer

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    I had really enjoyed the theatrical release of Alien3, but was dismayed to see the really negative reaction that it had.
    What I enjoyed was that it had a "take no prisoners", "this is no sequel" feel to it that was no more evident than killing Newt and Hicks. I get the impression that keeping Newt would have just relied on the same "motherly" aspect of Aliens instead of the nihilism of Alien3. It was that new tact that keeps the film so alive for me.
    It's true that the special effects mar this film to our SFX savvy eyes, but they were sliced bread to me back then. Having read a few of the source scripts that eventually got wrapped up together into this film, I can see that there may have been a lot cut out that would have fleshed out the prisoners more. It would be fascinating to see these as either deleted scenes or reintegrated, but I have no idea how it would have played out.
    The only thing about the film that I would really change would be the ending immolation. I loved the act itself, as it matched the feeling of the movie, but having the alien burst out during the fall was really a bad choice.
    Good thread. [​IMG]
    I'ts going to take some big cojones to open an Alien Ressurrection appreciation thread. I could come up with many reasons why I like it (and will proudly display it in my collection), but it has many many problems to overcome. Beautiful film, though.
     
  16. BarryS

    BarryS Second Unit

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    Thanks for the responses, everyone. It's good to see that I'm not the only one who likes Alien 3. But am I the only one who doesn't absolutely love Aliens? Anyone? There must be those of us who prefer mood and suspense to guns and gore.
     
  17. Scott W.

    Scott W. Second Unit

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    Just a little tid-bit. Biehn got paid more money for the short sequence shown of him in Alien 3 than he did for his entire performance in Aliens. Quite interesting.

    Scott
     
  18. Andy Olivera

    Andy Olivera Screenwriter

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    Don't worry, Barry, you're not the only one who likes Fincher's entry better than Cameron's. Before I go on, though, I have to admit, reluctantly, that Cameron's is the better film.

    Anyway, Aliens was the first film I saw in the series and it blew me away. However, the more I watched it, the less I seemed to enjoy it. OTOH, while I didn't care for Alien 3 at first, I grew to like it more with every viewing.

    I chalk it up mostly to its atmosphere. From the first scene to the last, the tone is of pure hopelessness. Nowhere in between is there even a glimmer of light that would suggest a happy outcome. I think this comes through best in one of Charles Dutton's speeches: "You're all gonna die. The only question is how you check out.".

    Another thing that draws me in are the visuals and Fincher's direction, in general. Who else could've juxtaposed Newt and Hicks funeral with the birth of the new alien so well? Or how about creating one of the best credit sequences in the history of cinema? The falling match? Ripley's dive(minus the alien bursting from her chest, which was added by the studio)? All incredible stuff, and Aliens doesn't have anything that comes close.

    Finally, would be the emotional aspects. So many people disengage themselves right from the beginning, with Newt and Hicks dead, because it's depressing. What nobody realizes is that was the point. You're supposed to be identifying with Ripley, remember? The autopsy scene is especially powerful if you're at all involved. Later in the film Ripley sums up her emotional state in one simple sentence: "You've been in my life so long, I can't remember anything else.". Aliens does have a strong emotional aspect(because of Newt), but in Alien 3 it's replaced with loneliness, with which I have a far easier time identifying.
     
  19. Mikael Soderholm

    Mikael Soderholm Supporting Actor

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  20. Jordan_E

    Jordan_E Cinematographer

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    Once I finally could ignore the damn British accents, the movie grew on me considerably, kind of like THE SHINING. I didn't care for Kubrick's version back in the day. ALIEN3 had a sense of dreadful inevitability.
     

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