Alien Resurrection (1997)
In space, no one can hear you snore.
I don't know if I can name
another film in which so much talent produced such a mediocre result.
The Alien franchise is one of the most distinguished of all the
filmed series. It has attracted some of the world's greatest
directors: Ridley Scott, James Cameron, and David Fincher.
Jean-Pierre Jeunet directed this one, and you could not make a better choice
for the franchise. He has such an outré and stylized sense of visual
composition that even Tim Burton has to settle for second place for
sheer imagination and set design. In fact, if you pick Jeunet as the greatest living
director, I can offer many alternatives, but no outright rebuttal
except maybe Ingmar Bergman. He
is a true genius, combining art and commercial appeal flawlessly,
blending the imagination of Burton and Robert
Rodriguez with the heartfelt and accessible warmth of Spielberg. At
least three of his films, The City of Lost Children, Amelie, and A
Very Long Engagement, are among the greatest ever made. Amelie is
rated 29th best of all time at IMDb, and his filmography has no less
than three other films rated 7.8 or higher, thus high enough to make the
all-time 250 with enough votes. Having four films at 7.8 or higher places him in the
same category as Martin Scorsese and Francis Ford Coppola. Pretty ggod
company, indeed. (Sergio
Leone has five. Spielberg has six - and six more rated 7.6 to 7.7!
Kurosawa and Bergman have 15 each.)
The script was written by Joss Whedon and, again, you
would have a hard time making a better choice to write a space fantasy
film. He's the creator of Buffy, Firefly, and Angel for the small
screen; and his feature films include Toy Story, Titan A.E., and
Sigourney Weaver came back to star as
Ellen Ripley, the role with which she is most closely associated, and
was excellent as usual, playing Ripley this time as a wisecracking
human/alien hybrid who was created hundreds of years after the time
period of the first three films in the series.
What a team!
It has some good ideas, the design is as magnificent as
expected, and every detail is constructed meticulously. Every one of the
participants took the project seriously and worked hard to make it
successful. The enormous budget was quite sufficient to allow Jeunet
to do anything he wanted to do.
... and I kept fast-forwarding through the tedious parts.
So what went wrong?
There's just no reason for this
film to exist. The story is neither fresh nor compelling, and just
about every acre of ground covered in this film has already been
plowed by the previous films in the series. Simple as that. End of
story. It grossed only $47 million. The budget was $70 million,
although that's misleading because $15 million of that was stuff
Winona Ryder lifted from the set.
For the record, I greatly enjoyed all the special features on the
second disk, and there are many of them. The film's creators were
enthusiastic, articulate, and thorough in explaining just about every
element of the process from pre- to post-production. There are also
two versions of the film on Disk One. One is the theatrical
release, and the other is an alternate cut which re-incorporates some
deleted scenes and has a different beginning and ending. (Jeunet says
the theatrical release is the director's cut, but he created the
alternative so DVD purchasers could see another way it might have
You will note
that there is also some Sigourney Weaver frontal nudity in the Alien:
Resurrection DVD. (Last image below.)
But not really.
Long Story. Pull up a chair.
- First of all, this image isn't in the film at
all. In the actual movie (both versions), the scene is cropped at her bikini line. This image is from the extra
features on the two-disc special edition. It's a picture snapped on the set.
(Note the guy smiling on the right.)
- Second, it is not a live body at all, but a
mannequin, according to the commentary.
- Third, Sigourney didn't even pose for the
mold. The FX guys used a body double for the body, although they did use
Sigourney's head for the head.
Overall: I recommend the package enthusiastically for fans of the Alien
series, but my recommendation comes with the proviso that the film
itself is disappointingly average, and represents a career nadir for
most of its brilliant creators.
Daily Box Office - Friday, April 7, 2006
- Amazingly, the Benchwarmers made a run at #1, and finished with nearly the
same amount per screen as Ice Age 2.
- The Spade/Schneider comedy easily defeated the other new releases. In
fact, it took in as much as Take the Lead and Slevin added together!
"DeLay recently told one of his pastors that God wanted him to leave Congress in
part because He has bigger plans for DeLay."
- First Stop: starring as Elwood in a remake of The Blues Brothers
A Working Replica Of The Star Wars Landspeeder
Legends of broadcast TV: Madonna and Letterman.
N.Y. Post Suspends Page Six Contributor for making stuff up
- He'll be moving over to the Times
The teaser website for Spider-Man 3
Bush's New Cabinet Includes Katherine Harris, Ann Coulter and Ken Lay
The trailer from Lost City
- Andy Garcia ("Modigliani") stars and makes his directorial debut in a
passionate and historical tribute to his native Cuba. Havana in 1958 is a
place of pleasure for many, but others are not happy under the rule of
dictator Fulgencio Batista. As the revolutionary forces of Fidel Castro and
Ernesto "Che" Guevara prepare to move on the city, Fico Fellove (Garcia)—owner
of the city's classiest music nightclub, El Tropico—struggles to hold together
his family and the love of a woman (Inés Sastre), not knowing that his club
will become more than just a stage for popular entertainment. Observing all is
The Writer (Bill Murray) an expatriate American who sees Fico being drawn into
events as the revolution changes everything. Though Fico watches a culture
vanish and a people transformed, it is his love of Cuban music that keeps his
A clip and the trailer from Kinky Boots
- When his father passes away, Charlie is unexpectedly left in charge of the
sinking family shoe business. Believing that all is lost, Charlie suddenly
meets the feisty female impersonator "Lola," who inspires him to buck
tradition. As Charlie and Lola set out to conquer the brave new world of sexy
cross-dressing footwear, their unlikely idea catches fire and takes them all
the way to the catwalks of Milan. With a mix of brassy humor and heartwarming
poignancy, "Kinky Boots" explores what happens when people who have spent
their entire lives trying to fit in suddenly decide to truly stand out.
A clip from Stick It
- The writer of the hit comedy "Bring It On," takes on the world of
competitive gymnastics in "Stick It". Haley Graham (Missy Peregrym) is a
rebellious 17 year-old who is forced to return to the regimented world of
gymnastics after a run-in with the law. A judge sentences Haley to her
ultimate nightmare -- attending an elite gymnastics academy run by legendary
hardnosed coach Burt Vickerman (Jeff Bridges). Haley's rebellious spirit and
quick-witted banter quickly shakes things up at the strict school – making
both close friends and bitter foes along the way. Haley surprises herself as
she discovers an unexpected ally in the form of her new coach, and learns
respect is a two-way street. Haley, Vickerman, and a group of his elite
athletes band together to confront a major championship and prove that
loyalty, friendships and individual athletes matter more than rules, judges or
Eight more clips from American Dreamz (2006)
The trailer from
John Tucker Must Die
- When three popular girls from different cliques discover they've all been
dating the school stud, they band together to seek revenge. Despite the jerk’s
charm and ever-growing popularity, the girls cleverly scheme with the help of
the inconspicuous new girl in town, to soil his reputation and break his
Yellow asterisk: funny (maybe). White asterisk: expanded format.
Blue asterisk: not mine. No asterisk: it probably sucks.
Puerto Vallarta Squeeze (2004)
Puerto Vallarta Squeeze is a love triangle/thriller set in Mexico. Craig
Wasson plays an American Writer living in Puerto Vallarta with his girlfriend
(Giovanna Zacarías), a small-town girl who used to work as a hooker.
Wasson is broke and not writing.
The two witness a double assassination performed by Scott Glenn. Next thing
we know, a CIA honcho (Harvey Keitel) is on his way to Puerto Vallarta with a
young assassin to take out Glenn. Seems Glen was one of Keitel's team, but
went rogue with one of the two hits. Glen approaches Wasson and offers an
obscene amount of cash for a ride to the border. Zacarías insists on coming.
We learn that Glenn was the best of the best, is ruthless, but had good reason
for what he did, and may not be evil personified. Since I am recommending this
one, I will leave the plot there.
I liked this one. It kept me guessing because it avoided formulas. It had
great pace, beautiful photography, and likeable characters. My favorite
character was Mexico itself, which looked like a Diego Rivera mural in nearly
every frame. I suppose one could complain that the plot wasn't very realistic,
nor was the depiction of brightly painted poor Mexican villages very
realistic, but sometimes you just enjoy the story, and this was one of them.
This is a high C+.
IMDb readers say 6.0. It seems to have had a small US release, and is due
on DVD next Tuesday.
Giovanna Zacarías, who was excellent in the role,
down to her real Mexican accent, showed breasts in a well lit bathing in a
pond scene, and again in a dark love scene.
Dann reports on Lie With Me:
"How does a woman love a man? He asked me never to leave him. That was a
promise I couldn't keep. I didn't know how to love him. All I knew how to
do was fuck."
That quote from this 2005
drama pretty much sums up the plot, a drama about a young woman who loves
sex but has intimacy issues that prevent her from falling in love. She
loves sex, but every time she gets close to someone, she gets scared and
runs away to have sex with the first available stranger. The story,
however, may well get obscured for most people by the explicit nature of
the film. Loaded with nudity and explicit sex acts, it is obvious from the
script that the filmmakers were making a serious film, but they flirted
with the line crossing into porn throughout most of the film, and many
people will feel they crossed it.
Lauren Lee Smith did
an excellent job as lead character Leila, as did the supporting cast. I
enjoyed the story and the film, but I bet a lot of people missed the story
entirely. To many, I'm afraid, this film was just a sexploitation flick,
or straight porn. To me, it was much more.
Lauren Lee Smith
Two Thousand and None (2000). Black comedy about dying.
Vanya Rose shows all three Bs as 'nekkid girl
hanging in a rope'
and a very gymnastic Katherine Borowitz (Mrs
John Turturro) has some fully clothed sex with her real-life husband.
"Selling Innocence" (2005). Cheezeploitation television movie starring
Sarah Lind who almost stole the indie movie
Punch in just her bikini. Sarah shows oodles of cleavage
while her co-stars Joanne Kelly
and Charisse Baker are all sexy.
"Blood Money" (1999) aka "The Arrangement." Actioner written, directed and
starring Funhouse favorite Michael Ironside.
Lori Petty is shown in bra and panties.
Stacy Grant shows a lot of cleavage
Patricia Charbonneau is sexy
and Jacqueline Samuda is sexy but butch.
"Sanctuary" (1997). Another action film.
Aussie model Kylie Travis strips down to her
while Canadian model Monika Schnarre has sex
with her brassiere on.
"Night of Terror" (2006). Recently aired televison movie.
Martha MacIsaac is sexy.
"Love Thy Neighbor" (2005). Another television movie.
and Ksenia Solo are sexy
while Shannon Lawson shows some bunnyboiler
Godiva's season II: episode The Bigger Man
Sonja Bennett does her first nude scene since
showing her creampie while doing a butter spread in Punch
Erin Karpluk shows some side boob,
and Rachel Hayward shows some cleavage.
Brainscan returns to one of his favorite
subjects: staple girls who turn to acting careers. Here are his film clips.
Here's Morgan Fox,
a statuesque Heffer from Western Canada (Miss Canada 1988) in her only big-screen role:
Flesh Gordon meets the Cosmic Cheerleaders (1989). Morgan strips off her top a
couple of times but runs around in the flimsiest little ol' thing for most of
the movie. (1,
4) She technically
does not qualify as a Playmate-turned-actress. She is one of the few who did a
bimbo role BEFORE she became the Playmate of the Month, which happened in December of 1990.
Playboy's Playmate of the Month in June of 1985, had one of the more prolific
B-movie careers among the staplegirls. She wasn't Julie Strain, but she kept
at it for 15 years, and whipped out her mammoth chest in at least five
non-theatrical films (Passion Network (seen here), Busted, Hard Time, Guns,
and Society) (1,