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Saturday, August 28, 2004

ALIENS Vs. OTHER ALIENS

Finally saw Aliens Vs. Predators last night. And it's every bit as average/great/good/crap (delete as applicable) as you probably think it is. Bit worried though that one of the cast-members might be the guy who plays Milton Wordsworth in Story-Makers ("E-magine...E-magine a story..!"), but I probably e-magined it. Paul Anderson does a reasonable job with the direction and I won't spoil the plot or anything for all you salivating fan-boys out there, but you probably already know far more about the film than I do and I've actually seen it.

It's interesting how well Giger's original design-concepts hold up: they still look groovy...but to be honest the scariest thing about this film is the fact that in 25 years-plus no-one has actually brought anything new to the table. They're still clinging onto the original film like it was a life-belt, in the same way that Marvel desperately hang onto Stan and Jack's old ideas from over 40 years ago. AVP is modern film-making's equivalent to tag-team wrestling: let's bloat up our failing franchises by combining them. Lets make a meal that uses a MacDonalds and a Burger King burger in one roll: it's got to taste better, by golly. Well, Up-Sizing is sure as hell a lot easier than actually thinking up something new, ain't it?

Still, I'm not complaining really; I do actually quite like the idea of it...like Jason Vs. Freddy (which I've still not seen), the concept of the cinematic team-up or cross-over seems to have a lot going for it on a visceral level, but, at the end of the day, it's really just the same old dreary third-hand ideas, the same sad Spectacle, but pumped-up to bursting-point. Except it isn't.

And the film itself? Well, actually, it was better than I thought it would be. In fact, it was quite good fun. The picture quality was remarkably good. My favourite bit? Well, that was the part half-way through when someone stood up in the cinema and their head suddenly appeared in front of the film. It was surreal and strangely thrilling at the same time: like a comic-strip character that unexpectedly pushes their head up through 'the fourth wall'.

It was the only bit of the film that I hadn't expected.

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