12 of 17 people found the following review helpful
The (misunderstood) black sheep,
By A Customer
This review is from: Alien Resurrection  [DVD] (DVD)
There was a time when nobody seemed to like Alien 3. Then they made Resurrection and now nobody seems to like this - but love Alien 3. What it really amounts to is that Aliens is everyone's favourite, and both Alien 3 and Resurrection are very, very different. But that, of course, is what makes the Alien saga so great - the different approach taken each time - and this one is no exception.
Resurrection is misunderstood. Not that it isn't simplistic. It is the simplest to understand. This, in essence, is the very Hollywood film (made by a Frenchman who spoke no English prior to filming) for all the people who hated Alien 3 for being just a little too avant garde. The plot is basic, the characters sketchy and the special effects very standard. This isn't the mould-breaker Alien (and even Aliens was). But it IS a worthy edition to the Alien canon.
Like Alien 3, you watch Resurrection for Sigourney Weaver. In Alien 3, the character was at the end of the road. Here she is taken to a new level. She could go anywhere. She seems fresh. Weaver almost appeared younger here than she did in Alien 3. Some people don't appear to appreciate her almost autistic attitudes, but hey, this is Ripley, she's been through a lot, and this time she can't escape it, because it's inside her. Wouldn't you be traumatised?
Somewhere in the middle of this film is an excellent action sequence, where the characters have to swim through a flooded kitchen and climb a ladder through a boobytrapped nest of alien eggs. This scene is perfect. So much is going on, but Jean Pierre Jeunet directs with aplomb and makes a visceral scene that matches anything Aliens had to offer in its intensity.
The film's weakness (apart from the virtually empty DVD in this case) is the script. It was written by Joss Whedon, who writes vacuous teen shows like Buffy the Vampire Slayer. He was the wrong person. His one-liners are never less than funny, but they're out of place. Alien 3 may well have been overly po-faced in places, but Resurrection sometimes can't take itself seriously enough in places due to the script, so if it can't, we start to wonder if we can.
This is not Jeunet's bad egg. He made Delicatessen, The City of Lost Children and Amelie. They all have a lot in common, but because the other three were in French, people seem to think they are any more artistic. I wonder had this film been in French, would its detractors be waxing so lyrical about it as well? I suspect they would.
Oh, and I always loved the look of this film, and if the DVD is worth it for anything, it is the sheer richness of the deep colours.