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Franchise Rants

Franchise Rants

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Aorta

Jun-07-2016 2:04 PM

The Alien franchise has a passionate and polarized audience. Over 5 (or 7 depending on your point of view) films spanned over 35 years, a wide  variety of ideas have been put forth with varying degrees of success, along with ideas about how the story should be expressed, narratively and stylistically.

Now, with a new film on the way, hopes and concerns of every sort are being aired, much of them informed by what's gone before. Here's your place to speak out! What did you love, what did you hate, what do you want, what do you dread? What is your personal idea of canon? Be heard, and likely shot down repeatedly!

87 Responses to Franchise Rants

Necronom 4

Jun-07-2016 2:29 PM

I can't believe you did it Noob/Aorta. (Sorry dude but I still think of you has Major Noob!)

Oh my, where do I start? I'm sure I will be adding a lot of profanities to this topic. But I just want to begin with:

WTF is that ^^

I'm referring to the picture of that scene from Alien 4 were the (obviously) deluded scientist guy thinks that he's somehow managed to make the Giger Alien? (can you really call it that though?) submissive.

That scene in particular is comical and not in a haha (funny) way. It is comical because it is pathetic! Like the whole fucking film!

To be continued... 

The poster was good though!

 

Necronom 4

Jun-07-2016 2:56 PM

It was so mind numbingly stupid and it showed. Brandywine/FOX had obviously not done their homework with this one.

They would come out with all manor of excuses and lame explanations for certain aspects of the film. Of-course they would try to justify it's existence because they wanted to make money, and as much money as possible. Fortunately, they failed miserably!

What an extremely stupid thing they did here that they would continue to fuck up a much loved franchise with a film that they thought the masses would accept as they did with ALIENS. It was basically the same story as ALIENS (Although ALIENS isn't quite as popular now compared to what it once was.) just on a space station with poor excuses for Giger Aliens and a facepalm third act. WTF were they thinking?

Dollar! dollar! dollar!

I'm sure other members could produce a better rant than that!

And, I'm not finished yet. To be continued.. 

The poster was good though!

 

Aorta

Jun-07-2016 3:03 PM

Now you see pretty much the one thing that I like about that film is the glossy black MORBs. And the fact that they don't have segmented heads, which I always thought was way over doing it. But yeah, awful film. An alien comedy? Please. Plus, Joss Whedon. 

Engineer Tech Brett

Jun-07-2016 3:08 PM

I won’t lie, all my anger would be directed towards Alien Resurrection. Dot get me wrong Alien 3 had its flaws but the fourth film sucked ass, big time.


The Newborn, how the fuck was that a good idea? Surely someone working on the film would have asked if that was a joke? Of all the cast and crew, not one of them raised their hand and asked “This is a joke, isn’t it?”They went from an Alien that violently rips its way through your chest and grows into a nasty m**********r to this thing that wimpers when it see’s what it thinks is its mommy.

Viddy well, little brother. Viddy well.

Engineer Tech Brett

Jun-07-2016 3:09 PM

Don't get me started on Joss Whedon. Hate the guy.

Viddy well, little brother. Viddy well.

Necronom 4

Jun-07-2016 3:12 PM

Yep! ^^^

The poster was good though!

 

Necronom 4

Jun-07-2016 3:19 PM

The ONLY good thing about that film was the scene were Ripley (But not really Ripley, WTF) discovers her deformed siblings. (I think that was meant to be their chest burster scene.)

But yeah, terrible film...

Not got much bad to say about ALIEN 3 (apart from the early alien VFX from Woodruff, what a prick)

But I'm starting on ALIENS next... 

The poster was good though!

 

Necronom 4

Jun-07-2016 3:40 PM

Not quite onto ALIENS yet still got beef with Alien 4.

The thing that pisses me off the most about it is that, not only was 2 hours of my life taken from me when I first had the misfortune of seeing it, now I've realised that it's taken another half an hour of life ranting on about how much I hate the fuckin' thing!

Time to move on I think!....

(To be continued tomorrow. Almost midnight here. Time for beddy bows!)

The poster was good though!

 

Engineer Tech Brett

Jun-07-2016 3:42 PM

 Same time zone as necronom. legend.

Viddy well, little brother. Viddy well.

S.M

Jun-07-2016 3:52 PM

Brandywine had nothing to do with Resurrection.

 

And it's a little naïve to complain that Fox was after money on Resurrection, when they do precisely the same thing on every film they produce. It's called show business for a reason.

Centauri

Jun-07-2016 4:05 PM

Id have to say that Alien is my top favorite because it's done just right..it has a grander unknown world that is shrouded in mystery so the horror is elevated much more....... Aliens is 2nd place naturally because it is a great film that closely honored the 1st Alien.......;)

Alien 3? total complete crap.. just my opinion 

Alien resurrection.. (the effects were cool but) total complete crap of story and writing

despite Alien resurrection borrowing from two great Dark horse comics' "Aliens nightmare asylum" and "Aliens Labyrinth" Ginger has  praised the movie...but was very upset they didn't give him credit for his Alien design(s).

My faves are Alien, Aliens, Prometheus, and (already know ill like it) Alien covenant.

the Avp series, to me.... oh god kill me... It becomes more of a monster movie rather than an interesting conceptual soup. 

 

I can always appreciate and respect others having different taste tho because everyone relates to different things ; )  

 

 

 

 

****

 "Must be something we haven't seen yet.."__Bishop

http://www.alien-covenant.com/series/

            

Mizikame

Jun-07-2016 4:10 PM

The only redeemable factor of Alien: Ressurection comes to two items in the film. First is the EggSpore trap the Xenos get the Crew to have to swim towards & ladder up while Xenos are still chasing them after the failed Facehugger ambush (God was that soo fucking cunning & terrifying).

The other is when Ripley8 stumbles upon the previous 7 mishaps of reengineering a Queen Embryo/ Stay Alive Ripley. It's quite reminiscent to the Egg Morph Scene from ALIEN (in some regards) & shoves the fact that she has 7 failures proceeding er that are technically still "Ellen Ripley". Pretty fucking surreal.

Necronom 4

Jun-07-2016 4:13 PM

@S.M I connect Brandywine with FOX because they have had and continue to have a lot of influence with FOX with regards to the ALIEN franchise. And when I say it's all about the money, what I mean is that making money is now their priority and that these days they think that they can take the short route, cut corners to make a bit of profit.

I mean, when they funded ALIEN, they made such a big deal about having to splash out money to produce it, that, if it wasn't for Ridley stepping in and insisting that it was done a certain way, we would have wound up with a film like spaceballs.

Of course they want to make money, (I'm not the sharpest knife in the drawer but I aint no spoon.) But what I'm getting at is, when you cut corners in order to save money, don't blame anybody else but yourself when you don't make it work.

Has anybody ever told you you're cantankerous S.M? 

The poster was good though!

 

S.M

Jun-07-2016 4:41 PM

Brandywine haven't had anything to do with the franchise since 1992. The workprint of Alien3 didn't even credit it as "A Brandywine Production". It was credited as a Phoenix Company/ Gordon Carroll Production.  Giler, Hill and Carroll are producers in name only due to some contractual obligation on the first film (though Carroll wasn't credited on Prometheus or AvP:R).  They have had no real input since Alien3.

 

 

Aorta

Jun-07-2016 7:11 PM

S.M.-

N4 is lamenting the crass cynicism that makes a movie like A:R possible.

There's a steady decline in quality and cohesion over the life of the Alien franchise, especially if you conclude that timeline with AVP requiem. But Resurrection itself almost seems like a deliberate attempt to kill it off, as though the spirit of the whole thing was one of opportunism and even disrespect. It's easy to imagine Giler and Hill behind it, given their ignorance of anything like integrity.

There were actually some interesting ideas (and I hate to admit that because I think Joss Whedon should be relieved of his success, and all it's brought him, and sent to live in his mommy's basement. Maybe with Adam Savage as a roommate) but they were executed with jolly disregard for what made the Alien story great.

While feature filmmaking is a commercial art, when the filmmakers have stature and vision it's still possible to make a compelling film. Prometheus seems to be a really good example of both sides of that coin, a sort of postmodernist space horror blockbuster diluted by executive manipulation.

S.M

Jun-07-2016 7:23 PM

Putting aside opinions on films or personalities, no one sets out to make a bad movie.  Doesn't stop them happening, but the people involved have a vested interest in getting it right.  I don't see any more cynicism in things like Alien3 or Resurrection than there was in Aliens. Fox hired people to capitalise on one of their properties.  They didn't spend tens of millions of dollars on something they wanted to stuff up.

Aorta

Jun-07-2016 7:42 PM

I said said seemed to want to kill it off, O crabbiest of pants. It's a whimsical reaction, not a considered observation. You.

 

S.M

Jun-07-2016 7:49 PM

Not sure there's any call to get personal when disagreeing.

Lone

Jun-08-2016 12:14 AM

S.M you do give off a rather negative vibe, I thought it was just me being oversensitive!

I welcomed you to the forums....nada.....

I thanked you for your contributions.....nada

Granted you may know more than all of the rest of us put together, but please forgive me for saying that your attitude towards other forum members does come across as very curt and unfriendly!

@NOOB- I will be returning to this topic later [just home from night-shift] with my rants on the franchise! I was on the verge of starting this exact same topic, but I thought that I would get too emotional. I admit that Ridley's films are my personal canon too, and I will explain why ;)

@Necro- let it all out friend! XD  

THE LONE GUNWOMAN

"Let The Cosmic Incubation Begin" ~ H.R. Giger

S.M

Jun-08-2016 1:11 AM

I've not been disrespectful to anyone, and ignored the instances of name calling thus far.  Is 'Thou shalt not disagree with anything' a rule I missed?

Aorta

Jun-08-2016 3:14 AM

S.M.-

'Crabbiest of pants' is not an attack on your character, but rather that of your pants. 

 

Lone

Jun-08-2016 3:31 AM

Feel free to rant away at us S.M! :)

It's not what you say that I am getting at. We can all agree to disagree, it's the way you say it!

Once again, welcome to the forums, pleased to meet you, and I know you will have valuable insights and information to share, which will be well appreciated!

THE LONE GUNWOMAN

"Let The Cosmic Incubation Begin" ~ H.R. Giger

Lone

Jun-08-2016 5:28 AM

WARNING: The following expresses my personal opinion relating to the Alien Franchise. Should you disagree with the content, Jonesy says that we may have to revue the Bonus Situation!

At its heart A L I E N is an updated version of many classics of Sci-fi and horror, some of its influences being more obvious than others. It’s a fantastic Sci-fi-Horror hybrid, with some Heavy Metal-MOEBIUS thrown in for good measure. Given the level of interference and control exerted by the producers, it’s a miracle A L I E N is so good.

I say it’s all down to the genius of Ridley Scott! He propelled classic Sci-fi from being seen as merely a genre, to a serious, believable, level. Those who followed, have failed to emulate his all encompassing, world-building.

Dan O'Bannon's story mixed elements of old, with new and shocking ideas. The Chestburster being but one example! The story originally being seen through Space Kat Jonesy’s eyes was very novel, and Ridley shamelessly used Jonesy as a sort of Mini-McGuffin.

Luckily O’Bannon met H.R Giger, and his iconic designs for all that was alien about the story, were groundbreaking. The original alien is the classic monster and remains unique and quite simply outstanding.

Fortunately, Ridley Scott was eventually chosen to fill the director’s chair. Pretty much unproven as a film director, but a man who’s commercial background, knack for economy, vision and artistic ability elevated what would have been a run-of-the-mill horror flick, into something that has arguably never been surpassed! The only other films coming anywhere close being John Carpenter’s The Thing, and Philip Kaufman’s remake of Invasion of the Body Snatchers.

The fusion of those three key people, birthed A L I E N. They are my canon. Gradually, their aesthetic has been obliterated, by progressive directors, writers, creature effects techs, and 20th Century FOX.

As far as I am concerned the rot set in with James Cameron. His over-blown, over-budgeted directing ‘style’ lacks finesse and depth. ALIENS, while being a good action movie, veered away from the horror of a terrifying star-beast we could hardly fathom, an organism we had no clue how to kill. He deliberately omitted the Giger-verse and obliterated any sense of other-worldly strangeness, in favour of cheesy dialogue and a hive of giant bugs, who could be easily destroyed, even by one person. Honestly, I would rather watch Gordon Douglas’s THEM!

…and why oh why, do people rave on about the Bishop/Hudson knife scene as if it was something so cool and original? When it's borrowed from DARK STAR!

Then we have QUEENIE, Giger liked the design and was gracious enough to say as much. [Though Cameron was not remotely interested in working with Giger, nor in giving him the credit he was due. I have no problem with Stan Winston, but oh, the irony] I hate that bloody thing for a host of reasons, chiefly being, that it ignored the much preferable, horrendous, scary, unthinkable egg-morph! [and don’t even bother retorting with “the egg-morph wasn’t in the theatrical release” jibe!]

Cameron’s story stripped the MORB of all its mystery and horror, and bumped up the heroism of Ripley. From then onwards the Franchise became her story. Sadly, Cameron’s canon has become de rigour, and been followed by each sequel.

Next, Alec Gillis and Tom Woodruff. Grrrr, if I ever meet those sons of….well, you get the picture!

Thought they could out-do Giger, thought they improved Giger’s design! They are *uckin* delusional! How does an averagely built man-in-a-suit [Woodruff] look better than the over seven foot tall, painfully thin Bolaji? And have you even seen their ALIEN 3, shitty coloured suit designs up close? Oh my god, and their Newborn, qualifies as one of the worst creature designs in film history!

ALIEN 3? Poor David Fincher, he won’t even go there, which says it all. Interference of the worst kind resulted in an overly depressing sequel, instead of one which had the potential to match A L I E N. Still, the assembly cut has enough of Fincher’s genius left to be pretty palatable.

ALIEN Resurrection, well, if nothing else it proved that you cannot contain the MORB!

Fincher and Jeunet are both very stylish directors. How sad that their talents were so misused!

 

THE LONE GUNWOMAN

"Let The Cosmic Incubation Begin" ~ H.R. Giger

Charza

Jun-08-2016 6:58 AM

Hello everybody.

Well I was about to respond, but then The Lone Gunwoman already posted a reply which basically says everything I wanted to say, so bravo there :D !

Like you Lone Gunwoman, I think the decline already started with Aliens.

To me Aliens feels like a textbook example of an adaptation where those in charge simply did not understand the source material and because of that they have no true sense of what made the original movie great.

James Cameron, Walter Hill and David Giler wrote a blatantly simple script which had no real substance to it. The characters are quite bland and simply fit the James Cameron formulaic archetypes. (Think of troubled hero/heroine, a faceless company, an ex enemy now friend type of character and of course some no name people who just behave like obnoxious dicks all the time and basically are only there to be some type of canon fodder. Almost every James Cameron movie has these types of characters, and it gets pretty old once you know the formula. )

The action sequences in this movie are just simple filler to compliment the otherwise very thin storyline.

Production values were very good, I have to give that to the movie. I also believe that because of the simplification and design changes, Aliens probably had more mass appeal, and because of that, it was able to be financially successful.

But where are the original ideas ? Where is the intrigue and the suspense ? Where is the fear ? Where is that sense of a greater unknown ?  What was truly "alien" about this film ?  
Well, it simply isn't there. LV-426 is no longer a hostile planet  with Alien features.
The Morb is no longer truly alien.

It looks very different from the original move and became this sort of space ant with a semi paracitic lifecycle. Who was the spacejockey in the mysterious derilict ship ? Why does the movie never mention this wonderfully intriguing piece of possible story ? 

Aliens in many ways is an unworthy sequel, that to me basically wasted a great deal of potential.
The first Alien movie laid a very solid groundwork, and at the same time it gave the audience somthing to think about. I remember I had a great deal of questions after seeing Alien for the first time, and Aliens never every truly gave any new insights other than that the company was named Weyland-Yutani.

 

Lone

Jun-08-2016 7:04 AM

Giger's Alien is the culmination of the nightmare monsters I feared as a child, the one in my closet and the one who hid under my bed! Where has that primal fear gone?

Here we see the tacky looking A3 design, worn by Tom Woodruff

Compare with Giger's unused, progressive 'Runner' design below

 

THE LONE GUNWOMAN

"Let The Cosmic Incubation Begin" ~ H.R. Giger

Aorta

Jun-08-2016 9:41 AM

Lone-

JC is sort of a hyper-evolved Michael Bay.

 

Thoughts_Dreams

Jun-08-2016 10:27 AM

Thanks Aorta for putting this post together.

 

I think as far as making a good movie you also need to see what the fans liked and don’t like. Learning by mistakes is an art in itself.

 

I like when things fall into place locally but some bizarre shit is fun also (hello Giger :D).

 

The tone should be dark I believe, not only the look by the landscapes but also as far as what happens. Take the fact that Newt died that is a kind of dark thing and not very happy but still it fits into the mood of the Alien franshise about loss, death, and so on. Another fact is that Ripley lost the guy that she loved in Alien 3 that also fits in with the tone of the Alien/Prometheus series. In a way there is an existential part to the franchise also, it is not only about monsters. More existential questions would be nice but they got to be put in an interesting and intelligent way.

 

Focus on the characters (I have said this a million times before and I say it again, heh). When I think about it all movies that I really like have interesting characters or ask interesting questions but they make sense in a way or are at least not outright stupid. In a way you can look at the franchise as a way of putting questions about what it is to be human.

 

What I like? There is a lot: I like the environments all of them this far including those in Alien Resurrection yeah I said it. Many of the characters are interesting not all of them but many. The characters of Prometheus definitely lowered the average point of the characters as far as the whole franchise of the Alien movies is concerned.  Even the marines in Aliens are good even those that are not very important to the story because it seems to me that the characters were well written so they could imagine what it would be like to be in that situation and it worked because of that.

 

Most of the monsters are interesting, I am not very much a fan of the newborn though. I am not sure why but it could have been better. Prometheus has problems but the monsters are alright. Do we count the Engineer as a monster? It was alright but it could have been better. Since we are not sure if it is a he or she I will write it.

 

What I am worried about is that it will be another Prometheus as far as the characters, the editing, and the lack of answers are concerned. Take the worst of Prometheus and most of Alien Resurrection and you have a disaster. A disaster is: lack of answers, lack of logic, characters that you don’t care about, dumb dialogues which to me can be found in most of the Alien connected movies if you look close enough, and lousy jokes. By lousy jokes I don’t mean bad as in silly but fun but jokes that are just not good because of bad timing or that are not intelligent or well thought out. Even those of the Alien movies that I like have some things that are just unnecessary but we should all be able to admit that. No movie is perfect, that is just the way it is if you look at it in a sober way.

 

Alien Resurrection did at least one thing right and that was the underwater scene which felt claustrophobic so that one was good. I got to say that I like the Call character but then I like a lot of movies that Winona Ryder has done (Girl Interrupted and Edward Scissorhands, for example).

 

Someone mentioned the Alien versus Predator movies. I have only watched one of them so I can just tell a bit about the first one. Unfortunately it is just lame and brings nothing to the story. They should also see what went wrong with the AvP movies and learn from it.

 

I agree with Necronom 4 that the scientist that pretended to kiss the Xeno acted dumb. Whose idea was it to put that in the movie? To me this is a good example of misdirected comedy that is totally out of place and that has no point. You could say that it is a way for him to show that they have captured the Xeno and views it as its toy but I don’t think that it is a reason enough. They could as well have replaced it with a scene where the scientist takes a shit in front of the Xeno and it would still be dumb as hell. To its defense if you want to find an excuse for it most of Alien 4 is bad but still.

 

Maybe a bit of topic but is it just me who thinks that the skin of the monster above from Alien 4 looks like they have made it mostly of black garbage bags?

 

There should be good reasons why things happen and they should make sense to the story as a whole. I don’t say that all things should be extremely obvious, some mystery is alright but it shouldn’t be because of bad writing.

 

As far as canon goes I really am not sure. I can see the benefits of it but there can also be too many restraints if you look at it in that way.

 

Lone: I like Alien 3 but I guess that it could have been better if the studio wouldn’t have messed with it as much as they did. Yes I have watched the making of material on Youtube and it is interesting. With the studio interference it is interesting to see that they got a movie at all.

 

Charza: That got me thinking about a thing. In Alien they had astronaut outfits but in Aliens they had regular to earth clothes but it was supposedly on the same planet. What happened? Maybe this is because of inconsistent writing or that Cameron simply didn’t care but I still find this to be strange.

cuponator3000

Jun-08-2016 12:00 PM

Well. It is hard to escape the Alien franchise for me. I constantly think about what I have seen, read, played, and what I will see, read, and play. It has a certain appeal. My favorite movie is most definitely Alien. Everything came into place just right (pretty much everything.) It fits right in to the scifi and horror genres, has pretty well written and overall likeable characters, and the design/atmosphere is WONDERFUL. 

Now Aliens I like as well. I can still watch it time and again and have a great couple of hours. Still, like many people I think, this film is when the franchise fell off the rails. The worst aspect is probably the xeno design for me. 

They just are NOT good. I mean, the foundation of a good design is there since it is based on Giger's Alien, but the way Cameron changed them (I think one reason was the dome head kept breaking. They couldn't make an action movie with the design and budget given, so they switched it up.) It doesn't feel like the same species (somewhat.)

Someone here also pointed out that Cameron and company didn't understand or care about the world building that started in Alien. The lack of Ridley really hurt. He had no chance to give input on the story they crafted, where he would have gone, or anything. Or he didn't want to. I cannot remember. I like Aliens, but it is just such a departure from what Alien was

Alien 3 was tough for me for a while. I first saw it and thought it was CRAP. Extremely depressing, design that felt like a weird knock off of Alien, terrible looking effects, and the story felt it had been butchered and put the through the mill several times (which it was.) I have come around since then. I think Alien 3 is a good movie. Sigourney Weaver was GREAT. A woman who has been haunted and hunted by these beasts for longer than she can remember stuck on a desolate planet full of rough characters was running on empty. She fought and fought and fought to survive and in the end, threw herself into the fire to bring down her enemy. She gave everything she had to survive only to be forced to give her life to take the xenomorphs away for good (haha except the countless books and comics (canon or not) that detail xenos on every other planet.). What a character arc! The other guys in the movie were pretty inspired actors and the whoel story of the film pull together just enough creativity, strength, fear, and grittiness to really make SAlien 3 a good movie. Unfortunately, it suffers from a dull environment (with moments of interest), iffy special and creature effects (what they did was unique and never done before I think. It just didn't turn out too well), and a sloppy story due to studio interference. 

Haha I ended up doing more praising than complaining there. Alien 3 was littered with greatness, but the process of getting to the final product was too full of turmoil. 

Now, Resurrection. I like that there were some new kinds of ideas in there. It was creative, I'd say. The problem is, a lot of the humor wasn't actually funny (that is subjective I guess.) Also, the story was a reeeeaaach. Cloned Ripley and the Alien growing inside of her when she died. Cloning isn't that crazy, but having the queen inside her cloned as well and surviving and functioning??? Bleh. The process of making this movie should have stopped there. I have to say I liked the characters mostly. Call, Ripley,  and General Perez all make a good amount of the movie enjoyable. The other members of call's group are almost good enough to make a nice cast. Th rest were either weird, terrible, unimportant, or a combination of the three. 

The overall design wasn't terrible. Set and character design was pretty good. I also enjoyed the creature design up until the Newborn reared its ugly head. Now, seeing a weird human/xeno baby thing isn't my idea of greatness. Still, it is one that could have worked EXTREMELY well. Too bad we got what we got. Ending the movie on Earth wasn't a good idea to me either. The Alien franchise is about being, well Alien. Facing the creature itself, as well as being in a lonely, isolated environment. Aliens had a lot of people running around in it, but it still felt far away from home. I know Earth was a crappy place at that point in the timeline, but still not where an Alien movie needs to or should go. 

I won't go into the AVP movies, I don't really include them. I will make another post about Prometheus probably

Not a map, an invitation

Charza

Jun-08-2016 2:06 PM

@Thoughts_Dreams

According to the movie they started to terraform the planet of LV-426, and established the colony of Hadleys Hope. 

One of the most illogical things about this scenario I think, is that no one ever "knew" that the derelict was there.

How is it that none of the surveys ever turned up any indication of this very large and strange object? It was only after they had found Ripley, and she provided "coordinates" that people decided to investigate the spot. And of course these people were unarmed and not protected in any way. 

Yeah, logic isn't Aliens' strong suit. 

 

S.M

Jun-08-2016 4:09 PM

Alan Dean Foster explains the non-detection of the Derelict in the novelisation, and Burke explains why they weren't armed in the film.

 

@Lone - Thank you.

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