The film starts, and we find out all the survivors from Aliens: the little girl, Hicks the marine, and the synthetic android, are dead. WTF!!!
Picture inserted for Jordan's entertainment
Watching these films back to back, one really gets hit by how obscene it is to take some very strong characters from the second film, that they spent most of the second film trying to save, and just suddenly kill them off. James Cameron apparently said that killing off these characters was an insult to the fans of Aliens, and I couldn't agree more, despite some commentary yesterday that this is what happens in horror films. True, but I think that this reaction is a testament to how strongly the characters are actualized in the second film.
sob, sob, I miss Hicks
In the summer of 1991, before seeing Terminator 2, I was shown a teaser for Alien 3 with the tagline, "Before, we learned that in space, no one can hear you scream. Now, we learn that on Earth, Everyone can hear you scream." FREAKING AWESOME I thought - in Alien 3, aliens are gonna come tear it up on futuristic planet Earth! Sweet! Then, the script changed, and that wasn't the plot of the movie at all. Here is the plot: Ripley is the only survivor, she lands on a prision planet, and soon learns that she has an alien gestating inside of her. Plus, an alien pops out of a dog, and spends most of the film going around killing prisoners. That's it.
So, I could go off about what is wrong with this film and what still works, but I prefer to daydream about what could have been: the original script called for a two-part movie. Basically filming Alien 3 and 4 back to back with a connecting storyline (a la Pirates of the Cariibbean, Back to the Future, etc.) The storyline called for Hicks, Bishop, and Newt, returning to Earth and battling a class of warrior aliens that were genetically engineered by "the company". The third film was to end with a small victory on Earth, and the decision to track the aliens to their source! Whatever, that may have been. Ripley was only to make a cameo in the third film with a more pronounced force in Alien 4. This would have been awesome.
Instead, we get a very anti-climactic end to what was supposed to just end up being a cool trilogy.