Wednesday, 21 November 2012

30 Day Horror Challenge-Day 10: A Great Sequel

For the next 30 days, I will be giving my fingers short bursts of exercise by completing the 30 Day Horror Challenge, found here. Hopefully it will give you a bit of insight into what horror is for me. Don't forget to check back every day for a new instalment.


Day 09: A great sequel.

I'll take some flack for this, but here it goes; Alien 3. That's right, widely considered the worst of the original trilogy (until Resurrection came along), disowned by future amaze-balls director David Fincher, and regarded as destroying so many elements of the films that the previous instalments had built up. And I love it. I hate seeing that Fincher disowned the film, because it has all the hallmarks of his future best works; dark and starkly beautiful photography (returning to the cinematic scope of the first film), a gritty narrative, and an abstract score. What really makes this film for me is just how much balls it has. Hicks and Newt were well loved characters from the preceding Aliens, and this film just completely does away with them. Ellen Ripley is, once again, alone and must fight to survive in a hostile environment (here, it is an all-male prison planet that has no weapons). The original theatrical release is actually missing a lot of material that has since been reworked and released as the 'workprint' version, which you can find in the Quadrilogy and Anthology boxsets, and would be my preferred version, as it covers several plot holes and just gives me more of this dank and cold film (I will make a side note, a friend of mine maintains he prefers the theatrical cut, as the workprint feels long and wandering, a complaint I can understand). I really think a lot of people didn't like this film on its release because it was such a 180 compared to the previous, more action orientated Aliens, but this is much more in keeping with the industrial feel of Ridley Scott's masterpiece, and is, to boot, tense. You never know which to fear more; the streamlined, panther-like alien, or the prisoners, who are always on the border of being loyal allies or murderous rapists. Not a popcorn film by any stretch of the imagination, this film is a dark masterpiece.