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  • Writer's pictureRonny Duncan Studios

Aliens (1986) ft. Robb Conlon

Updated: Oct 16, 2022


Guest: Robb Conlon (Host - Recruiting Hell podcast, Founder - Westport Studios)


Plot Summary: A 1986 Science-Fiction, Action, Horror Film Directed by James Cameron; Lt. Ripley (Sigourney Weaver) is found 57 years after the events of Alien floating in space. After going through review, she is approached about going back to the location of her encounter with the Alien with a group of Colonial Marines to investigate the loss of contact with a new colony. The Marines, upon arrival, soon realize they are outmatched. They find a young girl who has survived the traumatic experience of the colonists. Ripley and the Marines do their best to survive, but must fight off multiple aliens and the company man, Burke (Paul Reiser).


*Recognition:

  • Nominated for Best Actress (Weaver), Art Director, Editing, Sound, and Original Score; Won for Best Visual Effects and Sound Effects Editing;

  • The claim has been made that Aliens belongs among the greatest films, and it is one of the best science-fiction, action and sequel films. In 2008, Empire ranked it 30th on the magazine's "500 Greatest Movies Of All Time" list. Ellen Ripley has been recognized; the American Film Institute ranked her the eighth-most-heroic character on its 2003 100 Years ... 100 Heroes and Villains list, and she was ninth on Empire's 2006 "100 Greatest Movie Characters" list.

  • Aliens is considered one of the best sequels of all time, equal to (or better than) Alien. According to Slant Magazine, it exceeded Alien in every way. Den of Geek called it the best blockbuster sequel ever made, and remarkable even as a standalone film. In 2017, the website ranked it the second-best film in the series (behind Alien). In 2011, Empire called it the greatest movie sequel ever.

Did You Know:

  • Like most films, the movie wasn't shot in sequence. But for added realism, James Cameron filmed the scene where we first meet the Colonial Marines (one of the earliest scenes) last. This was so that the camaraderie of the Marines was realistic because the actors had spent months filming together.

  • According to Bill Paxton, he improvised many of his lines including "Game over, man! Game over!" His famous line "We're on an express elevator to hell, going down!" was probably improvised as well, as it doesn't appear in the shooting script.

  • Al Matthews, who plays a Marine sergeant in this film, was in real life the first black Marine to be promoted to the rank of sergeant in the field during service in Vietnam.

  • Bill Paxton continuously apologized to Carrie Henn throughout filming every time Hudson had to swear in front of her. Carrie later admitted that she didn't mind, mainly because she really didn't know what any of the words meant.

  • One of the alien eggs used in the film is now exhibited in the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C.

What is this movie is about?/Elevator Pitch: Last survivor of the first movie has to go back to save another last survivor while battling more Xenomorphs.


Best Performance: Sigourney Weaver (Ripley)/Carrie Henn (Newt)

Best Secondary Performance: James Cameron (Director)/Sigourney Weaver (Ripley)

Most Charismatic Award: Carrie Henn (Newt)/Al Matthews (Sgt. Apone)/the Aliens

(*Anti-Charismatic: Bill Paxton/Paul Reiser)

Best Scene:

  • The Hive

  • MedLab/Burke's Demise

  • Meeting the Marines

  • Ripley's Debrief

  • Finding Newt

  • Battling the Queen

Favorite Scene: The Hive/Battling the Queen

Most Indelible Moment: The Hive/The Queen Xenomorph


In Memorium: None this Week


Best Lines:

Newt: They come at night...mostly.


Carter Burke: I made a bad call.


Ellen Ripley: Get away from her you bitch!


Ellen Ripley: I say we take off and nuke the entire site from orbit...it's the only way to be sure.


Ellen Ripley: God damn it, that's not all! Because if one of those things gets down here then that will be all! Then all this - this bullshit that you think is so important, you can just kiss all that goodbye!


Funniest Line:

Pvt. Hudson: Game over man! Game over!


Pvt. Hudson: I don't know if you've been keeping up on current events, but we just got our asses kicked pal!


Ellen Ripley: Did IQs just drop sharply while I was away?


The Stanley Rubric:

Legacy: 9.33

Impact/Significance: 8.5

Novelty: 8.33

Classic-ness: 8.83

Rewatchability: 6

Audience Score: 9.25 (91% Google, 94% RT)

Total: 50.24


Remaining Questions:

  • Why are they wearing camo?

  • How did Newt survive?

  • How are they able to breathe with an open air lock?

  • Who/what fertilized the eggs?

  • When does the company send more colonists, and do they find anyone else alive?

  • Isn't it awfully convenient the facehuggers didn't attack for a good two minutes while Ripley is trying to get Hick's attention?

  • Is Alien or Aliens the better movie?

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