Aliens (film)

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For other films in this series, see Alien (franchise).
This time it's war.

Aliens is a 1986 sequel to 1979's Alien. It is an science fiction action film about a team of Marines sent to restore contact with a lost colony that has been overrun by dangerous alien organisms. Accompanying them is Ellen Ripley, still traumatized by her previous encounter with one of the creatures.

Directed and written by James Cameron. Story by James Cameron, David Giler & Walter Hill.
This time it's war. (taglines)

Ellen Ripley[edit]

  • You better just start dealing with it, Hudson! Listen to me! Hudson, just deal with it, because we need you and I'm sick of your bullshit.
  • You know, Burke, I don't know which species is worse. You don't see them fucking each other over for a goddamn percentage.
  • [to the Alien Queen who is about to kill Newt] Get away from her, you BITCH!
  • Close your eyes, baby!

Sergeant Apone[edit]

  • All right, sweethearts, what are you waiting for? Breakfast in bed? It's another glorious day in the Corps. A day in the Marine Corps is like a day on the farm: Every meal's a banquet. Every paycheck's a fortune! Every formation's a parade! I love the Corps!

Private Hudson[edit]

  • I'm ready, man. Check it out! I am the ultimate badass! State of the badass art! You do not want to fuck with me. Check it out! Hey, Ripley, don't worry. Me and my squad of ultimate badasses will protect you! Check it out. Independently targeting particle-beam phalanx. WHAP! Fry half a city with this puppy. We got tactical smart missiles, phase plasma pulse rifles, RPGs. We got sonic, electronic ball-breakers! We got nukes, we got knives, sharp sticks...
  • Yo! Stop your grinnin', and drop your linen! Found 'em!
  • We're on the express elevator to hell, going down!
  • They're coming outta the walls! They're coming outta the goddamn walls! Let's book!
  • What do you mean "they cut the power"? How could they cut the power, man?! They're animals!
  • That's it, man. Game over, man. Game over! What the fuck are we gonna do now? What are we gonna do?


Vasquez: You always were an asshole, Gorman.
Hudson: Have you ever been mistaken for a man?
Vasquez: No, have you?


Ripley: I don't understand this. We have been here for three and a half hours. How many different ways you want me to tell you the same story?
Van Leuwen: Look at it from our perspective, please. [points at an empty chair] Please. [Ripley sits down] Now, you freely admit detonating the engines of, and thereby destroying an M-class star freighter, a rather expensive piece of hardware.
Insurance attorney: Forty-two million in adjusted dollars. That's minus payload, of course.
Van Leuwen: The lifeboat's flight recorder corroborates some parts of your account. In that for reasons unknown, the Nostromo set down on LV-426, an unsurveyed planet at that time. That it resumed its course and was subsequently set for self-destruct, by you, for reasons unknown.
Ripley: Not for reasons unknown. I told you. We set down there on company's orders, to get this thing, which destroyed my crew. And your expensive ship.
Van Leuwen: The analysis team, which went over the lifeboat centimeter by centimeter, found no physical evidence of the creature you describe.
Ripley: [stands up] Good! That's because I blew it out of the goddamn airlock! Like I said.
Insurance attorney: Are there any species like this hostile organism on LV-426?
ECA representative: No, it's a rock. No indigenous life.
Ripley: [sarcastically] Did IQs just drop sharply when I was away? Ma'am, I already said it was not indigenous, it was a derelict spacecraft, it was an alien ship, it was not from there. You get it? We homed in on its beacon.
ECA representative: And found something never recorded once in any of the three hundred surveyed worlds [reads the report] "A creature that gestates inside living human host", these are your words, "and has concentrated acid for blood".
Ripley: That's right [beat] Look... I can see where this is going, but I'm telling you those things exist.
Van Leuwen: Thank you, officer, that will be all.
Ripley: Please! You're not listening to me. Kane, the crew member... Kane, who went into that ship, said he saw thousands of eggs there. Thousands.
Van Leuwen: Thank you, that will be all.
Ripley: Goddammit, that's not all! Because if one of those things gets down here, then that will be all, and all this [picks up documents] this bullshit that you think is so important [throws the documents on tabletop] you can just kiss all that goodbye!
[long moment of silence; members of the hearing watch Ripley with disapproval]
Van Leuwen: It is the finding of this court of inquiry that Warrant Officer E. Ripley, NOC 14472, has acted with questionable judgement, and is unfit to hold an ICC license as a commercial flight officer. Said license is hereby suspended indefinitely. Now, no criminal charges will be filed against you at this time, and you are released on your own recognizance for a six-month period of psychometric probation, to include monthly review by an ICC psychiatric technician. These proceedings are closed.

Ripley: Van Leuwen? Why don't you just check out LV-426?
Van Leuwen: Because I don't have to. There have been people there for over twenty years and they never complained about any hostile organisms.
Ripley: [alarmed] What do you mean? What people?
Van Leuwen: Terraformers. Planetary engineers. They go down there and set up these big atmosphere processors to make the air breathable. It takes decades. That's what we call 'shake'n'bake colony' [he tries to leave, but Ripley blocks his way with her arm]
Ripley: How many are there? How many colonists?
Van Leuwen: I don't know. Sixty, maybe seventy families [looks pointedly at Ripley's arm] Do you mind?
Ripley: [lets him go and speaks to herself] Families. Jesus.

[a conversation in Hadley's Hope main operations center, shortly before the xenomorph outbreak]
Al Simpson: [to a co-worker, on his way leaving] I'll be down in maintenance, okay?
Brad Lydecker: Al?
Al Simpson: [absent-mindedly] What?
Brad Lydecker: Hey, Al!
Al Simpson: What?
Brad Lydecker: Remember you sent some wildcatters out to the middle of nowhere last week, out past the Ilium Range?
Al Simpson: Yeah, what?
Brad Lydecker: One of them's on the horn, a mom-and-pop survey team. He says he's on to something. He wants to know if his claim will be honored.
Al Simpson: Why wouldn't his claim be honored?
Brad Lydecker: Well, because you sent them to that particular middle-of-nowhere on company orders, maybe? I don't know.
Al Simpson: Christ! Some honch in a cushy office on Earth says "go look at a grid reference". We look. They don't say why, and I don't ask. I don't ask because it takes two weeks to get an answer out here, and the answer is always-
Both: "-don't ask".
Brad Lydecker: So what do I tell this guy?
Al Simpson: [sighs] Tell him as far as I'm concerned, if he finds something, it is his. Lydecker? [points towards the corridor]
Brad Lydecker: What? [looks the way Al Simpson pointed and notices children playing there] You kids are not supposed to be on this level! Go on, get outta here!

Ripley: I don't believe this. You guys throw me to the wolves, and now you want me to go back out there? Forget it. It's not my problem.
Burke: Can I finish?
Ripley: No. There's no way.
Gorman: Ripley, you wouldn't be going in with the troops. I can guarantee your safety.
Burke: These Colonial Marines are very tough hombres. They're packing state-of-the-art firepower. There's nothing they can't handle. Lieutenant, am I right?
Gorman: That's true. We've been trained to deal with situations like this.
Ripley: [scoffs] You don't need me. I'm not a soldier.
Burke: Yeah, but we don't know exactly what's going on out there. It may just a downed transmitter, okay? But if it's not... I'd like you to go there as an adviser. And that's all.
Ripley: What's your interest in all this? Why are you going?
Burke: Corporation co-financed that colony along with Colonial Administration. We're going into a lot of terraforming, building better worlds-
Ripley: Yeah, yeah, I saw the commercial. Look, I don't have time for this. I've gotta get to work.
Burke: Oh, yeah. I heard you're working at the cargo docks.
Ripley: That's right.
Burke: Running loaders and forklifts.
Ripley: Yeah. So?
Burke: Nothing. I think it's great that you're keeping busy. And I know it's the only thing you could get. There’s nothing wrong with it. [pause] What would you say if I told you I could get you reinstated as a flight officer? The company has already agreed to pick up your contract.
Ripley: If I go.
Burke: Yeah, if you go. Come on, that's a second chance, kiddo. I personally think for you the best thing in the world would be to get out there and face this thing, get back on the horse-
Ripley: Spare me, Burke. I've already had my psych evaluation this month.
Burke: Yeah, I know, I've read it. You wake up every night, your sheets are soaking with sweat-
Ripley: [angrily] I said no, and I mean it! [in normal voice again] Now, please leave. I'm not going back. And I... I wouldn't be any good to you if I did.
Burke: Okay, shhh. Just do one thing for me, okay? Think this over [leaves calling card]
Gorman: [leaving along with Burke] Thanks for the coffee.

[Ripley and Burke are talking via video-link early in the morning]
Burke: Hello? Ripley? You're okay?
Ripley: Just tell me one thing, Burke. You're going out there to destroy them, right? Not to study, not to bring back, but to wipe them out.
Burke: That's the plan. You have my word on it.
Ripley: [pause] All right, I'm in [disconnects, then turns to Jones, her cat] And you, you little shithead, you're staying here.

[when the Marines are waking up from cryo-sleep]
Drake: They ain't pay us enough for this, man.
Dietrich: Not enough to wake up every day to your face, Drake.
Drake: What? Is that a joke?
Dietrich: Oh, I wish it were.
Drake: Hey, Hicks. Man, you look just like I feel.
Apone: [walking along the line of cryo pods] All right, sweethearts, what are you waiting for? Breakfast in bed? Another glorious day in the Corps! Day in the Marine Corps is like a day on the farm. Every meal's a banquet. Every paycheck a fortune. Every formation a parade. I love the Corps!
Hudson: Man, this floor is freezing!
Apone: What do you want me to do, fetch the slippers for ya?
Hudson: Gee, would you, sir? I'd like that.
Apone: [peels back his eyelid] Look into my eye!

Vasquez: Hey, mira, who's Snow White? [indicates Ripley]
Ferro: She's supposed to be some kind of consultant. Apparently, she saw an alien once.
Hudson: Whoopee-fucking-doo. Hey, I'm impressed.
Vasquez: ¡Que bonita!
Hudson: Hey, Vasquez, have you ever been mistaken for a man?
Vasquez: No. Have you?

[when Bishop "bleeds" the white fluid, revealing he is an android]
Ripley: [to Burke, agitated] You never said anything about android being aboard, why not?
Burke: It never... never occurred to me. It's just a common practice, we always have a synthetic on board.
Bishop: I prefer the term "artificial person" myself. Is there a problem?
Burke: I'm sorry. I don't know why I didn't... [to Bishop] On Ripley's last trip the synth- the artificial person malfunctioned.
Ripley: "Malfunctioned"?!
Burke: We had some problems and, uh... few deaths were involved.
Bishop: I'm shocked. Was it an older model?
Burke: Yeah. Hyperdyne Systems 120-A/2.
Bishop: Well, that explains it. I mean, the A/2s always were a bit twitchy. That could never happen now with our behaviour inhibitors. It is impossible for me to harm, or by omission of action, allowed to be harmed, a human being. [hands the tray with corn bread to Ripley] Are you sure you don't want some?
Ripley: [angrily knocks the tray out of Bishop's hand] Just stay away from me, Bishop. You got that straight?

Gorman: Morning, Marines. Sorry we didn't have time to brief you, people, before we left gateway-
Hudson: [raises his hand] Sir!
Gorman: What is it, Hicks?
Hudson: Hudson, sir. He's Hicks.
Gorman: [beat] What is the question?
Hudson: Is this gonna be stand-up fight, sir, or another bug-hunt?
Gorman: All that we know is that there's still no contact with the colony and that... a Xenomorph may be involved.
Frost: Excuse me, sir, a... a what?
Gorman: A Xenomorph.
Hicks: It's a bug-hunt. What exactly are we dealing with here?
Gorman: Ripley?
Ripley: [steps forward] I'll tell you what I know. We set down on LV-426. One of our crew members was brought back with something attached to his face, some kind of... parasite. We tried to get it off, it wouldn't come off, later it seemed to come off by itself and died. Kane seemed fine. We were all having dinner and... it... must have laid something in his throat, some sort of embryo, he started... uh... he-
Vasquez: Look, man. I only need to know one thing: where they are. [mimes pointing a gun]
Drake: Go, Vasquez. Kick ass, man.
Vasquez: Anytime, anywhere.
Hudson: Right, right. Someone said "alien", she thought they said illegal alien and signed up!
Vasquez: Fuck you, man.
Hudson: Anytime, anywhere.
Ripley: [angrily] Are you finished? [comes closer and speaks to Vasquez] I hope you're right. I really do.
Gorman: Yeah, OK, thank you, Ripley. We also have Ripley's report on disk. I suggest you study it -
Ripley: Because just one of those things managed to wipe out my entire crew in less than 24 hours, and if the colonists have found that ship, there's no telling how many have been exposed. Do you understand?
[there's a long moment of silence; marines just stare at Ripley, unimpressed]
Gorman: Anyway, we have it on disk, so you better look at it. Any questions? [Hudson raises his hand again] What is it, Private?
Hudson: [grinning] How do I get out of this chickenshit outfit?
Apone: You secure that shit, Hudson!

Ripley: How many drops for you is this, lieutenant?
Gorman: Thirty-eight. Simulated.
Vasquez: How many combat drops?
Gorman: Uh, two. Including this one.
Drake: Shit.
Hudson: Oh-ho, man...

Ripley: I don't know how you managed to stay alive. But you're one brave kid, Rebecca.
Newt: N-Newt.
Ripley: What'd you say?
Newt: Newt. My name is Newt. Nobody calls me Rebecca except my brother.
Ripley: Newt? I like that. I'm Ripley. It's nice to meet you. And who is this?
Newt: Casey.
Ripley: Hello, Casey. What about your brother? What's his name?
Newt: Timmy.
Ripley: Is Timmy around here too? Maybe hiding like you were? [Newt doesn't answer] Any sisters? [Newt shakes her head] Mom and Dad? [Newt nods] Newt. Look at me. Where are they?
Newt: They're dead, all right? Can I go now?
Ripley: I'm sorry, Newt. Don't you think you'd be safer here with us? [Newt shakes her head] These people are here to protect you. They're soldiers.
Newt: It won't make any difference.

Ripley: Lieutenant, what do those pulse rifles fire?
Gorman: 10 millimeter explosive-tip caseless. Standard light armor piercing round. Why?
Ripley: Well, look where your team is. They're right under the primary heat exchangers.
Gorman: So?
Ripley: So... if they fire their weapons in there, won't they rupture the cooling system?
Burke: Whoa ho-ho... yeah, she's absolutely right.
Gorman: So? So what?
Burke: Look, this whole station is basically a big fusion reactor, right? So she's talking about a thermonuclear explosion and... adios, muchachos.
Gorman: Oh, great. Wonderful. Shit! [talking via radio] Look... Uh... Apone. Look, we can't have any firing in there. I, uh... I want you to collect magazines from everybody.
Hudson: Is he fucking crazy?
Frost: What the hell are we supposed to use, man? Harsh language?
Gorman: Flame units only. I want rifles slung.
Apone: Sir, I-
Gorman: Just do it, Sergeant. And no grenades.

Hicks: [pulls out a shotgun] I like to keep this handy. For close encounters.
Frost: Yeah, I heard that.

Vasquez: All right, we got seven canisters of CN-20. I say we roll them in there and nerve gas the whole fucking nest.
Hicks: That's worth a try, but we don't know if it's gonna affect them.
Hudson: Let's just bug out and call it even, OK? What are we even talking about this for?
Ripley: I say we take off and nuke the entire site from orbit. It's the only way to be sure.
Hudson: Fuckin' A!
Burke: Ho- ho- Hold on a second. This installation has a substantial dollar value attached to it.
Ripley: [scoffs] They can bill me.
Burke: Okay, look. This is an emotional moment for all of us, all right? I know that. But let's not make snap judgments, please. This is clearly an important species we're dealing with here, and I don't think you or I or anybody has the right to arbitrarily exterminate them.
Ripley: Wrong!
Vasquez: Yeah, watch us.
Hudson: Maybe you're not keeping up on current events. We just got our asses kicked, pal!
Burke: Look, I'm not blind to what's going on, but I cannot authorize that kind of action. I'm sorry.
Ripley: Well, I believe Corporal Hicks has authority here.
Burke: Corporal Hicks is...?
Ripley: This operation is under military jurisdiction, and Hicks is next in chain of command. Am I right, Corporal?
Hicks: Yeah... yeah, that's right.
Burke: Yeah... look, Ripley, this is a multi-million dollar installation, OK? He can't make that kind of decision. He's just a grunt! Uh, no offense.
Hicks: None taken. Ferro, do you copy?
Ferro: [via radio] Standing by.
Hicks: Prep for dust-off. We're going to need immediate evac.
Ferro: Roger. We're on our way.
Hicks: All right. We take off. Nuke the site from orbit. [glances at Ripley in agreement] It's the only way to be sure.

[The dropship crashes and explodes]
Hudson: That's great. That's just fucking great, man. Now what the fuck are we supposed to do? We're in some real pretty shit now, man!
Hicks: [grabs Hudson and draws him closer] You finished?
Newt: I guess we're not going to be leaving right now, then?
Ripley: I'm sorry, Newt.
Newt: You don't have to be sorry. It wasn't your fault.
Hudson: That's it! Game over, man! Game over! What the fuck are we gonna do now? What are we gonna do?
Burke: Maybe we could build a fire and sing couple of songs, huh? Why don't we try that?!
Newt: We'd better get back because it'll be dark soon, and they mostly come at night. Mostly.

[the surviving Marines take refuge in the colony after the dropship's crash, gathering all equipment they got left]
Hicks: That's absolutely everything we can salvage from the APC wreckage. We've got four pulse rifles, with about fifty rounds each. That ain't so good. We got, uh, fifteen of these M-40 grenades. [Newt reaches for a grenade] Don't touch that. Dangerous, honey.
Ripley: Is that the only flamethrower?
Hicks: Yeah. It's only half-full, but it's functional. Got another one, it's damaged, so I don't know about that one. But the good news... We've got four of these robot sentries, with display and scanners intact. They really kick ass. They'll come in handy.
Ripley: How long after we're declared overdue we can expect a rescue?
[long moment of silence]
Hicks: [deadpan] Seventeen days.
Hudson: Seventeen days? Hey man, I don't wanna rain on your parade, but we're not gonna last seventeen hours! These things are going to come here like they did before and they're gonna... [starts rambling unintelligibly]
Ripley: Hudson! HUDSON! [Hudson stops talking] This little girl survived longer than that with no weapons and no training [to Newt] Right?
[Newt looks at them and salutes playfully]
Hudson: [scoffs] Why don't you put her in charge?!
Ripley: You better start dealing with it, OK!? Listen to me! Hudson, just deal with it, because we need you, and I'm sick of your bullshit. I want you to get into the terminal and get me some kind of floor plan of this building. Construction blueprints, I don't care, anything that shows us a layout of this place. You listening?
Hudson: [distraught] Yeah.
Ripley: I need to see air ducts, I need to see electrical access tunnels, sub-basements, every possible way into this complex [beat] We don't have much time.
Hudson (pulling himself together with a visible effort): Yeah. Yeah, I'm on it.
Ripley: Hudson! Just relax.
[Hudson exhales loudly and leaves]
Bishop: I'm gonna be in the med-lab. Check on Gorman, continue my analysis.
Ripley: All right. You do that.

[Ripley is putting Newt to bed in the med bay]
Ripley: Last stop. Get in. [Newt lies down on the bed] Scoot down. That's good. Now, you lie here and have a nap. You're very tired.
Newt: I don't want to. I have scary dreams.
Ripley: Well, I bet Casey doesn't have scary dreams. Let's take a look. [holds up Casey] Nope. Nothing bad in there. See? Maybe you could try to be just like her, hmm?
Newt: Ripley, she doesn't have bad dreams because she's just a piece of plastic.
Ripley: [smiles] Right. I'm sorry, Newt. [turns on heater] There.
Newt: My mommy always said there were no monsters, no real ones, but there are.
Ripley: Yes, there are, aren't there?
Newt: Why do they tell little kids that?
Ripley: Most of the time it's true.
Newt: Did one of those things grow inside her?
Ripley: I don't know, Newt. That's the truth.
Newt: Isn't that how babies come? I mean, people babies? They grow inside you.
Ripley: [smiles] Oh, that's very different.
Newt: Did you ever have a baby?
Ripley: Yes, I did. I had a little girl.
Newt: Where is she?
Ripley: She's gone.
Newt: You mean dead.
Ripley: Here. Take this. [gives Newt her wristwatch] For luck. There's that. [switches off the light]
Newt: [grabs Ripley's arm] Don't go, please.
Ripley: Newt, I'm gonna be right in the next room. And you see that camera right up there? [points to security camera] I can see you right through that camera, all the time to see if you're safe. I'm not gonna leave you, Newt. I mean that. That's a promise.
Newt: You promise?
Ripley: I cross my heart.
Newt: And hope to die?
Ripley: And hope to die. [Newt hugs her, Ripley kisses her on the cheek] Now, go to sleep, and don't dream.

Burke: Look, those two specimens are worth millions to the bio-weapons division. Now, if you're smart, we can both come out of it as heroes, and we will be set up for life.
Ripley: [beat] You're crazy, Burke, you know that? You really think you can get a dangerous organism like that past ICC quarantine?
Burke: How can they impound it if they don't know about it?
Ripley: Oh, but they will know about it, Burke. From me. Just like they'll know that you were responsible for the deaths of 157 colonists!
Burke: Wait a second —
Ripley: You sent them to that ship!
Burke: You're wrong!
Ripley: I just checked the colony log. Directive dated 6/12/79, signed Burke, Carter J. You sent them out there and you didn't even warn them! Why didn't you warn them, Burke?
Burke: Okay, look. What if that ship didn't even exist? Did you ever think about that? I didn't know! So now, if I went and made a major security situation out of it, everybody steps in. Administration steps in, and there are no exclusive rights for anybody; nobody wins. So I made a decision, and it was wrong. It was a bad call, Ripley. It was a bad call.
Ripley: "Bad call"? [grabs Burke by the collar and presses him to the window] These people are dead, Burke! Don't you have any idea what you've done here?! Well, I'm gonna make sure that they nail you right to the wall for this! You're not gonna sleaze your way out of this one! Right to the wall! [lets him go and starts to walk away]
Burke: Ripley... [Ripley stops and turns around] You know, I... I expected more from you. I thought you'd be smarter than this.
Ripley: [takes a breath] I'm happy to disappoint you.

Ripley: [looking out the window at the atmosphere processing plant] It's very pretty, Bishop, but what are we looking for?
Bishop: [points at gas flaring from the reactor] That's it. Emergency venting.
Hudson: Oh, that's beautiful, man. Oh, man, that - that just beats it all.
Hicks: How long till it blows?
Bishop: Four hours. [Hicks groans] With a blast radius of 30 kilometers, equal to about... 40 megatons.
Hicks: We got problems.
Hudson: I don't believe this, I don't fucking believe this!
Bishop: Vasquez, close the shutters.
[Vasquez closes the shutters]
Ripley: Why can't we shut it down from here?
Bishop: I'm sorry, the crash caused too much damage. An overload is inevitable at this point.
Hudson: Oh, man, and I was getting short. Four more weeks and out. Now I'm gonna buy it on this rock. It ain't half fair, man!
Vasquez: Hudson, give us a break!
Hudson: Four more weeks. Oh, man...
Ripley: Well, we've got to get the other dropship from the Sulaco. I mean, there must be some way of bringing it down on remote.
Hudson: How? The transmitter was on the APC, it's wasted!
Ripley: Well, I don't care how, but we'd better think of something. We'd better think of a way.
Hudson: Think of what?! We're fucked!
Hicks: Shut up!
Hudson: We're doomed-!
Hicks: [louder] Shut up! [to Bishop] What about the colony transmitters? The uplink tower down at the other end. Why can't we use that-?
Bishop: No, I checked. The hardware in between here and there was damaged. We can't align the dish.
Ripley: Well, somebody's gonna have to go out there. Take a portable terminal, go out there and patch in manually.
Hudson: Oh, yeah, sure! With those things runnin' around? You can count me out.
Bishop: [speaking under Hudson] I'll go.
Hicks: Yeah, I guess we can just count you out of everything, Hudson.
Hudson: That's right, man! Hey, why don't you go, man!
Bishop: [more loudly] I'll go.
Ripley: What?
Bishop: I'll go. I mean, I'm the only one qualified to remote pilot the ship anyway.
Hudson: Yeah, right, man. Bishop should go. Good idea!
Bishop: Believe me, I'd prefer not to. I may be synthetic, but I'm not stupid.

[after Burke is revealed as the one who set the facehuggers loose on Ripley and Newt]
Hudson: [aiming his rifle at Burke] I say we grease this rat fuck-son-of-a-bitch right now!
Hicks: It just doesn't make any goddamn sense.
Ripley: He figured he could get the alien past the quarantine if one of us was... impregnated - whatever you call it - and frozen for the way home. Nobody would know about the embryos we're carrying. Me and Newt.
Hicks: Wait a minute, now, we'd all know.
Ripley: Yes, the only way he could do it is if he sabotaged certain freezers on the way home. Namely, yours. Then he could jettison the bodies and make up any story he liked.
Hudson: Fuck! He's dead! [aims his rifle at Burke again] You're dogmeat, pal!
Burke: This is so nuts. I mean listen... listen to what you're saying. It's all paranoid delusion. It's really sad. It's pathetic.
Ripley: You know, Burke, I don't know which species is worse. You don't see them fucking each other over a goddamn percentage.


  • This time it's war.
  • There are some places in the universe you don't go alone.

About Aliens (film)[edit]

You’re entering a tight corridor filled with menacing shadows. Is that breathing you hear? Well, don’t run. Clanging metal walkways and staircases always give your position away.
You might be playing a first- or third-person shooter - or watching the film “Aliens.”
Every science fiction/horror game of the last 20 years - from the granddaddy of them all, Id’s “Doom,” to recent titles such as Electronic Arts’ “Dead Space” series - owes a debt to the first two films in the “Alien” franchise, Ridley Scott’s moody 1979 original and James Cameron’s action-packed 1986 sequel, “Aliens.” ~ John Kosik
It starts with Ripley (Sigourney Weaver) emerging like Sleeping Beauty from more than half a century of interplanetary slumber, which she doubtless needed after her prior ordeal. The planet where it all happened, she learns, has since been colonized by humans, who have broken off contact with Earth—but note the time line: they did so only after she awoke. Is that a mere plot contrivance, or could it be that the monsters have been waiting for Ripley, to summon her to the fray? She certainly seems more determined and queenly this time around, with a foe to match, plus an android, played by Lance Henriksen, and the result is a formidable acceleration of all the fears that lurked in the first film: the frigidity of Scott’s detached and spooky manner is replaced by the relentlessness of a racing heart. ~ Anthony Lane
  • [W]ritten and directed by James Cameron, the Canadian boy from Chippawa, Ont., Aliens is smartly conceived and executed, and it does contain its share of thrills and scares. But it is very much a sequel, and the element of surprise, the most invaluable of commodities in enterprises such as this, has been lost.
  • In “Aliens,” Biehn plays Weaver’s comrade-in-arms, and while she seems to be the only human on this Marine mission with any smarts, he at least shares her humanity. It’s a quality in short supply this time.
    There’s no attempt to let us know or care for this new crew as we did for the old one, for Harry Dean Stanton or Yaphet Kotto, John Hurt, Tom Skerritt or Veronica Cartwright. Losing them was a wrench. These awesomely muscled men and women are sewer-mouthed, burr-headed young grunts, there to wrestle the weaponry about and to be picked off.
  • The supporting actors here are inventions like the PulseGun or the SmartGun, which red-bandannaed Private Vasquez (Jenette Goldstein) stalks about with regally, like a flamenco dancer. (“Aliens” is going to be big on the survivalist circuit. It’s about this point that you remember Cameron also co-wrote “Rambo: First Blood Part II.”).
    The film may be as empty as it is fast and noisy, but Cameron still has a droll touch with his villains--watch who steps off “Aliens’ ” elevator in pursuit of Weaver--and with amazing mechanical inventions: Here it’s a forklift suit with monstrous lobster claws. (The film’s R rating is for its language and gruesome effects; it’s definitely not for impressionable children in spite of its 9-year-old heroine.)
  • Two of the actors, ex-comic Paul Reiser and Lance Henriksen (“The Right Stuff’s” Wally Schirra) as the ship’s exceptional android, are particularly fine, as is James Horner’s ruminative, intelligent music and Emma Porteous’ eye for costuming.
    But of all the film’s choices, the best was Weaver. She’s its white-hot core, given fine, irascible dialogue to come blazing out of that patrician mouth, and the chance to look, for a moment, like a space-dusted Sleeping Beauty in her hyper-sleep casket.
  • Perhaps the best single word to describe James Cameron's Aliens is relentless. Tautly paced and expertly directed, this roller coaster ride of a motion picture offers a little bit of everything, all wrapped up in a tidy science fiction/action package. From the point when the opening half-hour of exposition ends and the real movie begins, Cameron barely gives viewers a chance to catch their breaths or ease their grips on their armrests as he plunges his characters from one dire situation to the next. This is one of those rare motion pictures that involves the audience so completely in the story that we're as worn out at the end as our on-screen counterparts.
  • When it comes to the logical marriage of action, adventure, and science fiction, few films are as effective or accomplished as Aliens, and there's nothing on the market (either in theaters or on video store shelves) that will leave you as thoroughly exhausted.
  • If you take the special edition of James Cameron’s astounding sequel to the classic Alien, it’s a film where you don’t see – save for a facehugger right at the start – a single alien creature until almost an hour has been clocked up.
    One full hour.
    How incredible is that, particularly contextualised against modern day flicks that never seem to introduce the cat to the bag, let alone let it out? But there’s more to it than that, because Cameron then spends that hour superbly well, managing to ratchet up the tension to quite unbearable levels in the build-up to the inevitable first encounter. In fact, there’s a convincing argument, and this writer would certainly subscribe to it, that the scariest thing in the whole of Aliens is a flashing dot on a screen, accompanied by a beeping noise.
  • Parents need to know that the relentless, ravenous clawed monsters in Aliens, the sequel to Alien, are likely to give small kids (and others) nightmares. It's even more violent than the original. Besides the rerun of the grisly moment when embryonic aliens burst out of people (in reality and in dream scenes), we also see quick cuts of victims seared with acid, getting set on fire, and blowing themselves up with a grenade. Gunfire, bombs, and flamethrowers are directed at the aliens. Most disturbing of all -- or, at least, the most nakedly manipulative -- is the perpetual threat of ghastly violence/death/contamination directed at a frightened, screaming little girl. There's also a plethora of swearing and lots of adoring fondling of guns and high-powered weapons.
  • Families can talk about the military metaphor in Aliens; it's said James Cameron had Vietnam on his mind when he depicted a group of gung-ho Marines charging into tunnels only to get shredded to pieces by hordes of an enemy that keeps on coming. What could the characters have done differently?
  • `Aliens,` said Cameron, resplendent on a recent June afternoon in a black, open-neck shirt crawling with virulently purple orchids, is the movie I would have died to see when I was 14.
  • An action-thriller that women will cheer for.
  • The ads for "Aliens" claim that this movie will frighten you as few movies have, and, for once, the ads don't lie. The movie is so intense that it creates a problem for me as a reviewer: Do I praise its craftsmanship, or do I tell you it left me feeling wrung out and unhappy? It has been a week since I saw it, so the emotions have faded a little, leaving with me an appreciation of the movie's technical qualities. But when I walked out of the theater, there were knots in my stomach from the film's roller-coaster ride of violence. This is not the kind of movie where it means anything to say you "enjoyed" it.
  • The director, James Cameron, has been assigned to make an intense and horrifying thriller, and he has delivered. Weaver comes through with a very strong, sympathetic performance. The supporting players are sharply drawn. The special effects are professional. I’m giving the movie a high rating for its skill and professionalism and because it does the job it says it will do. I am also advising you not to eat before you go to see it.”
    • Roger Ebert, Aliens 1986,, (July 18, 1986).
  • It's here that my nerves started to fail. "Aliens" is absolutely, painfully and unremittingly intense for at least its last hour. Weaver goes into battle to save her colleagues, herself and the little girl, and the aliens drop from the ceiling, pop up out of the floor and crawl out of the ventilation shafts. (In one of the movie's less plausible moments, one alien even seems to know how to work the elevator buttons.) I have never seen a movie that maintains such a pitch of intensity for so long; it's like being on some kind of hair-raising carnival ride that never stops.
    I don't know how else to describe this: The movie made me feel bad. It filled me with feelings of unease and disquiet and anxiety. I walked outside and I didn't want to talk to anyone. I was drained. I'm not sure "Aliens" is what we mean by entertainment. Yet I have to be accurate about this movie: It is a superb example of filmmaking craft.
    • Roger Ebert, Aliens 1986,, (July 18, 1986).
  • Skip ... if you’re not a fan of war movies. Even though “Aliens” belongs to a number of genres, it is basically just a scarier, louder, gorier version of a classic combat flick. Add in the profanity, the high body count and the endless waves of monsters coming out of the darkness, and you’ve got something that’s a far cry from the typical sci-fi or horror film.
  • James Horner's score contains elements of Goldsmithian militaristic marches and borrowings from his Star Trek III score, as well as a touch of "The Gayne Ballet," as used in 2001, making it seem more of a rehash than an original from this talented composer. Stan Winston has done an excellent job of making H.R. Giger's original Alien design quicker moving and more mobile, adding a hitherto unseen form of the Alien for the climax.
    Aliens ends up as a wild and woolly roller-coaster ride of a movie which should attract anxious crowds of thrill fans as it cuts a swath through theaters from here to Alpha Centauri.
  • “Aliens is about nothing at all beyond squeezing yet another buck from what seven years ago was an original, arresting — and profitable — science-fiction-horror [film]. Alien was so good because it said all that needed to be said on its subject. [S]equels are superfluous, dictated by pure greed as opposed to any driving artistic compulsion.”
  • The special-effects specialists are featured prominently in the credits that precede Aliens, and so they should be. Under the direction of James Cameron, they have put together a flaming, flashing, crashing, crackling blow-’em up show that keeps you popping from your seat despite your better instincts and the basically conventional scare tactics.”
  • Although the aliens still have that nasty way of bursting through people's skin, mostly we meet them full-grown, with scales and coils and, my, what big teeth. Now they look like dragons, now like sea monsters or pterodactyls or a combination plate of lizard, bat, eel and spider. The young aliens resemble agitated lobsters. I thought I saw an elephant trunk on the Big Mamma alien, who is too big to be blown away even by Miss Weaver's big gun, but it could have been something else. Anyhow, it wasn't anything you'd want clutching at your foot while you were trying to hang on to your spaceship and not be gulped into the void.
    No monster movie with pretensions can do without a scene that stirs a twinge of compassion for the monsters. It might be just my wishful imagination, but I thought I detected an expression of anguish on Big Mamma, a prodigious breeder, as dozens of her extra-large eggs were getting badly cracked. But she could merely have been opening her glacierlike jaws to devour that little girl.
  • Talk about relentless. There probably has never been a cliffhanger as outrageous or as ingeniously sustained as Aliens, writer-director James Cameron’s absolutely smashing sequel to Alien, Ridley Scott’s 1979 science-fiction/horror classic…. Aliens proves that a bigger budget and more elaborate special effects haven’t spoiled Cameron, and that he can still generate that involvement. In many ways, this is one sequel that improves on the original.”
  • “[O]ne of the things that makes Aliens work is the performance of Sigourney Weaver, reprising her role from the first film. She is strong and serious and very human. And she puts to shame the spate of one-dimensional macho heroes we’ve had lately who all look like plastic imitations of each other.”
  • Brandishing sophisticated weaponry and rescuing hostages in a style that leads Pauline Kael to label her “no more than a smart Rambo” (79), Sigourney Weaver’s Ripley champions a type of a feminist role in ‘’Alien (1979) (dir. Ridley Scott) and its filmchild Aliens (1986) (dir. James Cameron). Lawrence O’Toole croons that “Weaver brings wit, warmth, compassion, sweat and strength to her heroic role. Feminism has barely had it so good”, while David Ansen calls her “human macho” a “strong, unsentimental heroine” (64), and Rebecca Bell-Metereau celebrates Ripley as a “prototype for a new female lead…because she is not stunning, stunned, or simpering” (210) Single-handedly defeating alien creatures who threaten to destroy the human race, Ripley is intelligent, resourceful resourceful, independent, able to take command, and, in the greatest divergence from Hollywood’s typical depiction of “feminists,” not linked romantically to a man. “The closest thing that [Aliens] comes to romance” is Corporal Hicks showing Ripley how to operate an M41A pulse rifle (Kael 79). Ripley thus seems to epitomize, both for the films and their many viewers, the type of a new woman, one who notonly holds her own in a man’s world, but is the only person to survive successfully in it.
  • Director James Cameron makes all the right moves. [H]e brings to Aliens a solid gift for action, pacing and excitement…. Though Aliens is unable to eschew some obvious sci-fi conventions and those of other genres as well, it brings a fresh and lively spirit to this tired cinematic clime. Scene to scene, encounter to encounter, its tension builds unrelentingly. So, fasten your seat belts. It’s a blast.
  • You’re entering a tight corridor filled with menacing shadows. Is that breathing you hear? Well, don’t run. Clanging metal walkways and staircases always give your position away.
    You might be playing a first- or third-person shooter - or watching the film “Aliens.”
    Every science fiction/horror game of the last 20 years - from the granddaddy of them all, Id’s “Doom,” to recent titles such as Electronic Arts’ “Dead Space” series - owes a debt to the first two films in the “Alien” franchise, Ridley Scott’s moody 1979 original and James Cameron’s action-packed 1986 sequel, “Aliens.”
  • Cameron was confident enough to not only dream up a sequel that continued Ripley’s story but also shift it into a different genre. Where Alien was pure horror, Aliens was first and foremost an action thriller; the movie’s tagline, “This time it’s war” was a clear indication that Cameron’s movie was anything but a straight retread.
  • In the wake of Aliens, the pop culture impact of the colonial marines – and the look of film in general – was immediate. It’s worth noting that Paul Verhoeven’s adaptation of Starship Troopers, with its military units wearing light armour rather than powerful exoskeletons, was actually closer to Aliens than Heinlein’s book.
    Aliens' impact on videogame design, meanwhile, can be seen everywhere – from the retro alien blasting future soldiers in Contra (1987) to the frat-boy space marines in Gears Of War and a thousand identikit sci-fi shooters. In the absence of more colo-nial marines adventures on the big screen, videogame designers filled the void.
  • It starts with Ripley (Sigourney Weaver) emerging like Sleeping Beauty from more than half a century of interplanetary slumber, which she doubtless needed after her prior ordeal. The planet where it all happened, she learns, has since been colonized by humans, who have broken off contact with Earth—but note the time line: they did so only after she awoke. Is that a mere plot contrivance, or could it be that the monsters have been waiting for Ripley, to summon her to the fray? She certainly seems more determined and queenly this time around, with a foe to match, plus an android, played by Lance Henriksen, and the result is a formidable acceleration of all the fears that lurked in the first film: the frigidity of Scott’s detached and spooky manner is replaced by the relentlessness of a racing heart. Action thrillers assail but rarely test us; this is the tautest, most provoking, and altogether most draining example ever made.
    • Anthony Lane, “Happy Landings”, The New Yorker, Critic’s Notebook, June 1, 2009 Issue, (May 25, 2009)
  • Count me out of the fan club for this one. To me, Aliens is one extremely violent, protracted attack on the senses, as surviving space explorer Sigourney Weaver again confronts the spiny, slithering creatures who killed her buddies in the original film, Alien. Some people have praised the technical excellence of Aliens. Well, the Eiffel Tower is technically impressive, but I wouldn`t want to watch it fall apart on people for two hours. R.


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