Alien (1979)

Heresy! Blasphemy! Doesn't everyone like this movie? I didn't. If a film is going to scare me, it has to make me believe what's going on in order to set me up for a good fright. I stopped believing in the plot and characters of Alien very quickly. Some of my issues:

o Nostromo is a deep-space ore ship? Did we use up all the minerals on the moon and in the asteroids?

o What's the safest way for non-explorers to investigate something on an unfamiliar, hostile planet? You all get into the shuttlecraft and crash on the surface, leaving no one back on the ship except the cat. Brilliant.

o Speaking of the cat, could someone tell me how he closed himself in that small locker so that he could jump out and scare the crewman? Do cats evolve thumbs and sense of humor in the future?

o The final scene aboard the escape shuttle is a real puzzler. Apparently a well-designed shuttle contains an assortment of poisonous gases that you can easily release into the passenger compartment...just in case.

I really wanted to like this movie; it remains a visual wonder. But I left the theater that day feeling cheated. I think we're all accustomed to cutting film-makers a bit of slack, but there were just too many times during this movie when I thought, "Oh, come one!" One faux pas was not fatal, but together they ruined the movie for me.

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That's a very interesting point. I'm from the '80s. I actually have seen a lot of change in views of homosexuality even since I was a kid. (Mainly, people aren't so scared anymore that if they support gay rights it will "make them look gay") I'm a big fan of cross-dressing, homosexuality and bisexuality, but it was kind of boring to me. Maybe it's just b/c it didn't have much plot. And I'm not big into musicals. (Btw, kids half my age also love RHPS). I do also like to watch old movies and TV and think about just how different things were at the time period.
I think the campiest movies are the ones that aren't trying to be campy.
Another thing to consider is not the movie but the audience participation. I "discovered" the film in 1984. Based on the movie, itself, I wouldn't have ever seen it twice. It was the audience that was in on it that made for an enjoyable experience. From the very beginning, when the people in front stood up to say "Fuck the back row!" in response to Science Fiction Double Feature, to the end, where those same people got up to "spin" the screen, I was hooked.
I've seen the movie in theaters roughly 100 times (including several at NY City's 8th St. Playhouse, THE place to see it in the 80's), went to the 10th Anniversary ("And They Said It Wouldn't Last!"), and saw the Broadway play version twice in the early 2000's. (For those who don't know, the movie was originally a play.)
If you want worse, see the "sequel", Shock Treatment.
When I try to illustrate the difference between a 'sequel' and an installment, I use 'Aliens' v. 'The Godfather'.

The 'Godfather' (1 and 2 - what was UP with 3, I don't know) were the same story told in two installments. The Harry Potter franchise and The Lord of the Rings fall into this category. Whether you liked them or not - they are continuous stories too long to tell in one sitting.

Aliens, on the other hand, is the perfect archetype of what a sequel is. Notice:

Alien = one alien | Aliens = many aliens : Alien = a ship isolated by the vacuum of space and its crew | Aliens = a colony isolated by an uninhabitable planet, the (dead) colonists and marines : Alien = a cat | Aliens = a child : Alien = corporate profit motive : Aliens = corporate profit motive [you get the drift - not only are they the same movie - they are, essentially, the same as any slasher horror film - see Friday the 13th, Halloween, Nightmare on Elm Street = "DON'T GO IN THERE - THE KILLER IS IN THERE!"
Except for the bodies bouncing off the railings as the ship sank - Titanic sucked. We should replace EPIC with Titanic when talking about failure. TITANIC FAIL! (Made lots of money. I saw it in the theater too.)
ehrm.... i wouldn't say sucked. amazing soundtrack, good graphics for the decade or so ago it was made, a rather touching montage with the quartet as the ship sank, and an excellent cast bar Rose, who was kinda the bad apple that infected the barrel. I wasn't to crazy about ol Leo De Caprio either. His lines and character were great, but I feel like he didn't quite sell it to full potential.

I liked a lot more than I didn't like though.

Friend upon friend raved it was the greatest thing ever. I still think they were all in a secret conspiracy to get me to go see it knowing I'd lose about 20 IQ points in doing so.

Two hours of my life I'll never get back.
Sasha Baron Cohen in general. I watched a couple of episodes of Da Ali G Show, and I just hate the guy. People are stupid and craven. How hard can it be to get them to reveal that? It's like writing and distributing computer viruses. It's amazing that computers function at all. How hard can it be to make them stop working right? I have zero interest in ever seeing Cohen's films.
uh agreed overall it was pretty bad, but there were some parts in me that purred with mild distasteful satisfaction when all of those rednecks cheered at the thought of GWB drinking the blood of all the muslims. some things good for youtube videos, but never for a full length movie but hey... what makes money makes money.

Made me feel superior to the fucked up theist trash of society in that place.

Overall the idea of trolling shamelessly on uptight people is still extremely funny to me. I thought that Borat was stupid as a full length movie because i completely wasted my time on the useless plot, but some of the things in it and the reactions he got by idiots were pretty funny.

Bruno was much better than Borat. Both are rather grueling through a lot of parts but Bruno kept the laughter a little more frequent and a little less dry. A gay guy talking back to two big tough drill sergeants and asking ackward questions to gay converters were pretty hilarious.
I will say, I loved Sasha Baron Cohen in "Sweeney Todd." Then again, that wasn't a character of his making, nor a story of his writing, and he was being directed by someone else.
I thought that Alien was not that great a movie either, Aliens was a lot better. Not because the plot is that great, the movie is just really well written with good suspense and frightening action sequences.

I'm happy that I can be entertained by mindless nonsense such as the Aliens saga, the LOTR movies and even Harry Potter. Most of the times I just want to be entertained, so I switch off (most of) my critical thinking and just watch a movie for it's entertainment value.
My mother (who introduced her kids to great works of art in Europe and America whenever she got the chance) used to say: popular entertainment is an art in that it replaces the need for self-medication with mindless enjoyment.




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