Saturday, December 31, 2011

Alien 3 (1992) Trailer D

Alien (to the power of) 3 (1992)


Ripley has now escaped from the aliens, TWICE. She has gained a child that she can dispel her maternal warmth to. She has pushed aside her prejudices to save a droid. She has ran a gazillion miles away from the aliens. She deserves a damn break. Nope.

In a way, I should have seen it coming. Twice now Ripley had been the one to go to the aliens. The aliens were just  staying put, pooping out those eggs. The first movie her ship had answered a distress call from the first group that got entangled with the aliens. Second time, she was saddled with a gun blazing group that just set fire to everything in sight. From the perspective of the aliens, I would be plenty damn pissed. I would go after them too.

Just not in the way that the movie contrives it.

The last time we left our hero, Ripley, the a droid (i can never remember his name), and Newt were safely sailing through space away from the super duper awesome Queen that they just left in a burning inferno. A BURNING INFERNO. Somehow, some-damn-how, the Queen was able to place an egg on the landing gear which was able to enter the ship.How?? How??? HOW?!?!??! No answer. All we see are headache-inducing cuts of a flashing pod with broken pods and random readouts.

My first thought: this has become an artsy fartsy movie. hmmm...lemme see....ahhh. Directed by David Fincher. Same director of "The Curious Case of Bejamin Button" and "Fight Club". I have not seen "Fight Club" (Ow...ow...I's on my too-watch list) but the style of the movie makes so much sense. Alien has a sci-fi theme similar to Kubricks. Aliens was explosion orgasm of fun. And now we get artistic style of violence with splurts of deep emotions and humor.

So...back to the movie.

Ripley lands on a prison planet inhabited by prisoners that have become religious zealots .Hey, they have been isolated on planet with barely any security. After all the murderous riots die down, they must have strives for some sort of order in their lives. It turns out that Ripley is the only female on the planet. This arouses some resentment and  frustration in the prisoners. This could have easily turned into a rape-sorrow story if it wasn't for one vital thing. Ripley is now carrying an alien. And here's an added twist: her incubation time is taking longer because she's carrying a special kind of alien.

Then the movie becomes a survival story. Where the first two, she was surrounded by people that she could trust in friendship (Alien) or power (Aliens), she has no reason to trust these prisoners. In the end, they all work together for the common goal of defeating the alien.

Just for good measure, the Company still wants the alien. Now they want Ripley with the alien.

Ok.I know I'm bashing on this. I really hated it after I first watched it. I was indignant at Ripley having sex and the weird religious prisoners, and the bloody egg getting into Ripley. But then I thought about it.And I have come to appreciate it as a good conclusion to the trililogy ( it's a trilogy dammit!!! the fourth one is a drunken-induced mess). If I follow Ripleys psyche, she goes from leading a pretty trangquil life to seeing the brutal lives of her comrades ripped apart to witnessing firsthand the horrors of what space can emit to realizing that she missed her daughters life to almost gaing sanity in Newt then having Newt ripped away from her. Ripley has been thrown into the blender of shit and spun until the motor burned out. It is no wonder that she loses her characteristics that we have come to admire and love from the previous movie.What human can withstand all those horrors in such short of a time. Your morals would have splintered into oblivion. If ( just play along here) I was her place, I would have been grabbing on to any human being for some sort of contact. Any contact.

I do have mention that I really dig the idea of the alien taking some attributes of the being that it incubates from. So when the other egg (which I still don't fully understand how the hell that happened) hatches from a bovine creature,it's a four-legged creature ( I would definitely recommend everyone to watch the behind the scenes for the previous ideas for the creature- the greyhound idea was absolutely adorable!).

So this movie wasn't  my favorite but I can definitely appreciate what it was trying to pull. This movie really splits fans apart but it makes sense. I really love the idea that it began with Ripley and the Queen and it would end with Ripley and the Queen.


Monday, December 26, 2011

[Aliens] [1986] [Trailer]

Aliens (1986)

Sigh. I'm going to have to side with the masses on this one. Of all the movies in the franchise, this was just plain freaking fun to watch. It didn't add any new ideas to the sci-fi genre like the first one did. It just did what every person wanted to do after watching the first one. See those alien fuckers burn. Eventually.

What can you expect from a movie directed by James Cameron. Cameron = explosions, lots and lots of explosions.  What comes in even greater surprise, is that this sequel was done SEVEN years after the first movie. Seriously, Sigourney Weaver is an immortal. I am insanely jealous and in awe of her.

Ripley has been floating in space for a good amount of time. When she gets picked up, she finds that its been at least 60 years. She is astounded to find that a colony has been growing during the time she has been gone. Outraged, she finds that the big wigs don't believe her. Until they lose contact with the colony and then they want her help.She refuses until persuaded by a company man to go along as a consultant with "promises" to exterminate them. Armed with a rag tag  group of armed marines, they soar off. When they arrive, they find a deserted colony with one lone survivor, a little girl. And on top of that, there is not just one alien, there are a whole bus load of aliens. Oh, and they're stranded. Shiiiiiiit.

Not only is survival the goal of the game but there's a a great growth of maternal connections between Ripley and Newt ( the rescued child). During the time that Ripley was in space, she had lost her own daughter to old age. The scene where she finds out her own daughter died as an old woman struck me. The pain on Ripleys face was so strong that I teared up a bit. What even impresses me even more is the parallel connection betwen Ripley and the Queen. Both are strong female representatives of their kinds. Both are dead set to protect their brood. Both are equally strong. That is some serious conflict!

There were so many teeth biting moments. The part where Ripley and Newt are stuck in the med lab with the face huggers?! Ugh! I was scrambling to tuck my legs in. The part where they're walking through the nest? Ewww.. The whole chase scene through the plant and then the final stand off? Wow!!! The gun turrets running out? Ahhh!! Run!!!!

My absolute favorite part of the movie was seeing the Queen. Oh my gosh she was so bad ass. I didn't realize that Starcraft was based on Aliens. I could definitely see where Zerg was inspired from (Zergs are awesome and can kick anyone's ass!!!). This was a beautiful piece of animatronic art. It was designed mainly by Cameron and I bow down to his visual creativeness.

The marines were so weak for me. Just a bunch of loud talking military muscle who freak at the first sign of unknown factors. The clearest distinction between the groups was when the group watches the ship crash, it is only Ripley and Newt who calmly stands to survey their next movie. For some reason, the hispanic marine female irked the bejeesus out of me. So irritating. And I seriously wanted to kill Hudson.

On a random side note, I couldn't help but mentally compare Aliens to the "Water of Mars" episode in Doctor Who. I wonder if Russel T. Davies was influenced by Aliens?

Someone posted up a great thought on one of the boards. The distinct possibility of the aliens all being DNA related to Newt. Twisted.

American Nudist (2011)

    Everyone has their own favorite genres to watch.And we will watch any movies in that genre over and over.Even if the story line is predictable or you've seen one too many thousands of explosions. We just have our own comfort groupings of movies. Fantasies and romance are my weaknesses.
     I do try to watch movies outside of my comfort zone. It's always good to see a different perspective, a new form of art, or discover a new favorite. Independent movies are one of the best resources to discover something new. Film festivals, word of mouth, accidental browsing all contribute to the tools in this discovery. Sometimes my jaw drops in awe. Sometimes it drops in disgust. More often it squinches into confusion.
   That's all right.I don't have to understand every single form of style out there. Some can be too disgusting for my taste or too incomprehensible to my mentality. It's a free country. Anyone can make a movie.
    I was asked to review an independent movie weeks ago. I agreed to it without researching it or even asking what it was. Once I saw the cover of the DVD, I had major apprehension. The cover looks straight out of a soft porn cover. It wasn't just me, I asked other people to give me their first impressions. I heard :" Porn","Wow....really?","Can I borrow that into the DVD for a moment?".
    I'm no stranger to naked women or porn. I live in LA, pretty close to Burbank. 'nuff said. The thing is I didn't want to watch soft porn. I wanted to watch an indie movie. I pushed it for a few weeks until I finally sighed and popped the movie in.
   My first impression of the movie was an inaudible dialogue of a man who keeps walking in and out of an empty apartment. Then a series of nudism footage. An introduction to some alter egos. Alotof people angry and screaming. More nudist footage.Then inter splicing shots of the screaming guy, cat, and chaos.
     I didn't like it. And I feel horrible for not liking it.
    To be honest, I had to watch this movie three times. I fell asleep (I probably shouldn't have watched it after a long day of work) and had to restart it the second time. I watched it with my boyfriend for a third time to make sure that I wasn't crazy in my thoughts.
    Then I spent a few days googling this movie and reading other comments and reviews. I am completely baffled and amazed at the responses.This movie has recieved mainly glowing praise. After much time to organize my thoughts. I have come up with some simple reasons why:
1. This movie was difficult to watch literally
     I thought it was just me but my boyfriend agreed. The sound quality of the movie was atrocious. The conversations between the actors were inaudible or had the soundtrack playing over them. It got pretty annoying for me to up the volume, then down the volume. Speaking of which, the soundtrack annoyed the bejeezuz out of me. A classical musical mesh that grounded my molars into powder.
2. The plot was paper thin
   Since I couldn't hear anything, I didn't realize that there was a plot. From what I read of other reviews, it was an artist who lost his muse and was trying to recapture it with nudism. I'm all for indie form and art house but there was really no plot to follow. It becomes less of a movie and more of a showcase. Just a bunch of seemingly random shots spliced together. It would go from old footage of nude news to dancing montage to metaphors of a decomposing artist to a cat.

3. Point of this movie

    Before I googled, I honestly felt that the movie was made by a guy who wanted to be surrounded by women.

   There were a few fine points to the film I admired. The women were very beautiful and fun to watch. The nudist footage was entertaining to watch. I have very minimal knowledge about the nudist culture so the footage was really amazing to watch.I can't help but envy these peoples confidence and comfort in walking around in their skin. After suffering extensive damage to my own self image, its great to see some positive personal confidence. Although...I had to smirk when most of the footage was of beautiful women naked. The one footage of the yoga class was amazing. I wish the soundtrack hadn't ruined it for me.
   I liked the guy who did some exposition about the nudism. Until he was shot naked then it was awkard again.
   Some of the actors were pretty cool. I don't remember their names ( like I said, I couldn't hear a damn thing). One was a young woman who was explaining her sisters reaction to nudists. The eyeballs were hilarious. The second was a guy mostly hidden in the shadows and screaming into the phone. His short appearance still showed great projection and acting. They were delights to watch. 

     Alot of people enjoyed this movie and that's great. I could see where this movie could have appealed to me. It's not the nakedness. It's the lack of making a decent movie to watch. Which means good sound quality and steady cam. If there was a consistent story arch with somewhat clear reasons for the shots, then I would have enjoyed it more. Instead it came it as more of an amateur film with lots of beautiful naked women in it.

 Not the movie for me. Before you judge anything, experience it first. Enjoy everyone!

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Alien Trailer (1979)

Alien (1979)

I'm so sorry! I'm so sorry!!! I know it's been a looooooooooooooooong time since I've been consistently blogging. I have three simple reasons: 1. NanoWrimo, 2.Finals, and 3.I was uninspired once again.

Here was a common scenario:
    Upcoming three page lab report is day. And I have completed....oh....not one word. So I'm slumped in front of the computer screen, doing absolutely nothing. My piles of personal DVD covers have merged into a multi-colored stream. I sigh and sigh and sigh.
    Enter my boyfriend.
    "Babe, are you hungry?"
     "Mmm hmm"
      "Are you gonna cook?Ok.....stop laughing... did you do your lab report?....stop laughing...see now your about this...i'll cook if you'll watch 'Alien'?"

       And just like that I agreed. See, I've been terrified of watching "Aliens". Every time I see that clip of the drooling alien, I freak. I've heard of the "Stay away from her you bitch" line a gazillion times that I figured I was pretty knowledgeable in my pop culture.Why bother right?  Until the stomach and sheer laziness takes over.With a warm bowl of heaping pasta,I prepared myself to be frozen in terror and sleepness nights.



  Ok,..let me backtrack. The queen doesn't show up until the second one."Alien" is the first movie of four I absolutely refuse to acknowledge the fourth one as movie-but more on that one in another blog. It centers around space mining team that hears a distress call during their journey.  Theres the captain Dallas, the co-captain (played by the immortal Sigourney Weaver), a doctor, a droid, and other mining crew. As they veer off to the planet, their scout encounters an alien face sucker ( it is literally a six-legged creature with a tail that just jumps on the face and impregantes in your mouth...EWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWW).
   Now, there are strict protocols when it comes to alien contact which this obviously was. Ripley insists on refusing entrance to protect the rest of the crew. Ignoring reason (a.k.a Ripley), the rest of the crew grants the scout entrance.Dumb-asses......
   So they're able to surgically remove the face hugger and everything seems all right. Until the infamous spaghetti scene and a little alien is borne. The rest of the movie begins a suspenseful series of survival and trying to outwit an unknown alien. And on top of that, there is a whiff of a conspiracy since one of the passengers is a company man who does not want the alien to die. Hmmm....
   For  a movie that was made in 1979,it is just done amazingly! Alot of use of sound to scare the crap out of you. A simple but powerful story that has you gripping your seat. I couldn't help wondering (out loud-oops) what was happening next. All without the use of jump scares and crappy stories.
    I kept thinking of Kubrick as I watched this movie.I find that you either love Kubrick, meh about Kubrick, or absolutely hate Kubrick (dad...). I am in the meh section. I understand why he's influential but sometimes the scenes are so sloowwww.  And the beginning of "Alien" is sloooooooow. It probably didn't help I was tired when I watched this.
    I couldn't help but wonder what I would do in this situation. A situation where I'm stuck on a spaceship with a killer alien that. I would die first. Most definitely.
    There two things that I hated. One was the incessent strobe light effect. That became so annoying and painful that I got up to wash the dishes to wait it out.I hate strobe lights. The second was how tiny her underwear was at the end. Maybe it was her choice, maybe it was fan service but it was damn distracting. I kept watching for it to slip down.
    I did love that she went back for Jonesy the cat. I swear if they killed the cat, I was gonna stab my boyfriend with a pasta stained fork.
      Ripley has to be the most bomb-ass female character I have seen in the movies. She is strong, reasonable, and reasonably frightened. You are convinced that she is not an actress playing a hero in a thriller. Your watching a woman frightened but still using  her mind bent on survival. She is a great role model. Oh and she went back for the cat which win in my book!!!
      Can I just say, how amazing Sigourney Weaver is? Her character is awesome and her portrayal of the character is AWESOME. Every time she's on-screen he presence exudes strength and confidence despite running for her life.
     How can I write so long without managing to chat about the star of the move, the alien? Just on technicality, the alien is an animatronic and sometimes a body suit. No CGI and this alien was damn scary. It probably helped that it was designed by H.R. Giger, a damn freaky artist. It is complex, scary, and black. A very scary, shiny black.
    This movie was amazing and I had no reason to be frightened of it.Watching the first one made me curious about the second one. So I did. Then I watched the third. And....the fourth....ugh. 
   After watching this, I completely understand why this tops alot of sci-fi movies. I agree with this wholeheartedly. But alas, it is not my favorite. Which one was it?....Stay tuned....