Alien Resurrection is the fourth movie in the Alien film franchise, a series that consistently delivers creepy and unsettling adventures in the deep reaches of space. The movie is directed by Jean-Pierre Jeunet, and while this French director has plenty of notable films, modern audiences will most likely recognize the film’s writer better; Joss Whedon.
Whedon has a knack for telling fantastic fantasy and sci-fi stories, evident in his previous works which include Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Cabin in the Woods, the first two Avengers films – The Avengers (2012) and Avengers: Age of Ultron (2015), and more. Joss Whedon weaves a familiar yet altogether horrifyingly new Alien story, which manages to revitalize the series after the weaker third installment. Although it’s not as unique or scary as the first two Alien films, Alien Resurrection provides an entertaining and surprisingly graphic gauntlet of xenomorph versus humans.
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The Movie Review
Alien Resurrection marks the biggest time jump in the series, taking place over 200 years after the events of Alien 3. Due to the advancements in technology and genetic alteration, scientists aboard the military spaceship known as the Auriga have successfully managed to clone Ellen Ripley (Sigourney Weaver).
After a seemingly significant number of failed attempts, the scientists have managed to extract the xenomorph queen from Ripley, with the intent to study it and her forthcoming eggs. As with every Alien movie, things go horribly wrong with haste, with human bodies mounting up as the aliens break free of their captivity.
Ripley once again takes on the role of the protagonist, but her character is noticeably different due to the suspicious experiments and cloning process. Her changes in personality traits ultimately result in a less-effective heroine, but this is balanced out by a new crew of fun and unique characters.
A group of mercenaries is also onboard the Auriga when the aliens get loose, choosing to follow Ripley’s lead as they search for a way out. The outfit of guns-for-hire includes Call (Winona Ryder), a young but fierce soldier reminiscent of Ripley, Johner (Ron Perlman), a crude yet charming tough guy, and more. Most of the characters are well-written and fantastically acted, playing well off each other in both dramatic and comedic scenes.
In terms of memorable good guys, the cast of Alien Resurrection is one of the most memorable in the entire series.
Like other Alien sequels, Resurrection is, at times, a mixed bag of positives and negatives. While the characters are interesting and their dialogue is entertaining, some of the plot points are a little outrageous and hard-to-believe. The story also has a habit of reusing old tropes from the original movie, borrowing similar plot twists and story beats.
Luckily, the action and violence are both brutal and satisfying, producing some of the most memorable deaths (both human and creature) in the entire series. At the same time, the violence can seem over-the-top at times, resulting in unintentionally funny moments. However, there are also a few scenes that are exceptionally disturbing, bringing a level of body horror to the franchise not yet seen before. For fans who thought the previous films were too straightforward or light on the blood, Alien Resurrection will have you scratching your head and covering your eyes.
- Great characters with memorable personalities
- Practical effects and good use of gore
- A unique concept that leans heavier towards sci-fi
- Unintentionally funny at points
- Some plot twists feel rehashed