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SimplyScripts Screenwriting Discussion Board    Reviews    Script Reviews  ›  Aliens Moderators: bert
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Redeemer
Posted: February 15th, 2006, 7:59pm Report to Moderator
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This is one of the first screenplays I've ever read. Looking back at it now, I'm still floored with how densely packed and descriptive it is. It's one of the most definitive action scripts of all time, if you ask me. And even the quiet character moments in  between all the action is well written and subtle.

An absolutely amazing script.
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Zombie Sean
Posted: February 15th, 2006, 8:33pm Report to Moderator
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Yup! And the movie is even better!

Sean

P.S> Or I think it is.


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Redeemer
Posted: February 15th, 2006, 10:53pm Report to Moderator
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It is.
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kurtmagister
Posted: February 25th, 2011, 6:22am Report to Moderator
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Slightly off topic, but I couldn't find anywhere better to ask: Can anyone identify where each act 2 and 3 begin in this script? Because it's such a powerhouse, locomotive script full of nonstop action and changing circumstances, it's hard to find the acts end and begin.

Cameron is said at least up to one point early on, have followed the Syd Field three act  approach (1/4, 1/2, 1/4) but even still, it doesn't immediately stand out as following the model, which I can understand may be good thing.
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RayW
Posted: February 25th, 2011, 7:54am Report to Moderator
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ACT I - Find Ripley, debrief, update, goto LV-426 whatever with the space marines.
ACT II - Drop ship, recon, find newt (second story line), find tera-farmers, get their @sses kicked.
ACT III - Rescue ship crashes, attempt remote landing by Bishop, lose Newt, lose Hicks (this is the dark of night part), Ripley steps up again, confronts Queen, rescues Newt and Hicks, all fly away happy (false victory), confront Queen again. NOW they all fly away happy.

NNNNGH! Wrong.
Goto Aliens III

Okay. So they FLEW AWAY happy.



Off the top of my head though.
Not that I liked the movie or anything.


I'll be d@mned.
Vasquez runs her own bra shop. http://www.jenettebras.com/
Pretty darn cool.




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RayW  -  February 25th, 2011, 8:11am
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kurtmagister
Posted: February 25th, 2011, 12:10pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from RayW
ACT I - Find Ripley, debrief, update, goto LV-426 whatever with the space marines.
ACT II - Drop ship, recon, find newt (second story line), find tera-farmers, get their @sses kicked.
ACT III - Rescue ship crashes, attempt remote landing by Bishop, lose Newt, lose Hicks (this is the dark of night part), Ripley steps up again, confronts Queen, rescues Newt and Hicks, all fly away happy (false victory), confront Queen again. NOW they all fly away happy.


What script paradigm do the terms you've mention come from, i.e. Dark of night, False victory, etc?

Would the third act not start around the time the Xeno's overrun the colony/air vent chase?
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RayW
Posted: February 25th, 2011, 12:26pm Report to Moderator
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That same chart I linked on the other thread:
http://i879.photobucket.com/albums/ab352/rewriteitagain/ScriptStructure.jpg

If recollection serves, xenos overrun somewhere between those rough ACT II and III groupings.
Burke's ulterior motives had just been uncovered and under heated debate and Bishop was already on his way down the tunnel, right?
The overrun forces them out of their hold out spot and to make a run for... somewhere. Else.
That's when they lose Newt and other crewmen, Hicks gets banged on the head.

So yeah, The third act starts probably just before Ripley and Newt fall asleep in the medical bay.



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Dreamscale
Posted: November 23rd, 2012, 12:21am Report to Moderator
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Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!!!!!

Hey, my belly's full and I somehow stumbled in here before I watch a movie...and...well. I don't agree with this.

You guys know I don't believe in any of this structure or whatever anyone wants to bring into discussion.  But, Ray, I don't agree with these act breaks at all.  Am I really so not not it that I don't get it?

I haven't seen Aliens in the last couple months, but I think I've watched it twice this year, and I see the breaks pretty different...more like even if you knew nothing about film study or script structure, you could watch this movie and see 3, or actually even 4, kind of obvious groups of action.  And why not throw in an intro, because there's definitely an intro.

But, act 3...or maybe we should call it act 4, is it not when our little favorite, Newt, falls into the fan thing?  And we see our heroin, Ripley, watch...as an alien rises from the water, and...and...what?  The movie turns on a dime here, as Ripley becomes the hunter, savior, mother-figure, least likely to step it up and...begin act 3 or 4, and kick some alien ass.

No?

Comments?

Happy Turkey Day again to all...


To ski or not to ski...that's not even a question.
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TheUsualSuspect
Posted: January 6th, 2013, 12:02am Report to Moderator
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I always thought the 3rd ACT started when Ripley went BACK to get Newt.


A Picture Is Worth

If you want me to read your script, send me a link.
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WillJonassen
Posted: January 6th, 2013, 1:31am Report to Moderator
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I started thinking Alien.... Ridley Scott.    :sigh:... now, there's a genius.

Aliens is a fun romp, and it's thrilled me since I was little... but it's a thriller, and there is so much that is wrong and born of bad habit about it, too. I will give credit of course, any day, to those flaws giving a special quality of character to the work as a timeless whole... and for the ability of the imagination to fill in the gaps of the Alien universe, the space marines and corporation, etc.... but James Cameron. is. just. terrible. And so much of this movie is just cheesy terrible. Cult classic? Yes. Kind of a joke? Also yes.

I would be extremely curious, then, to get my hands on this script and see where it's good/better points are coming across, because I would love to love it. I would love to find some depth that I somehow missed in the execution of the actual film.

I would be curious to see the Bill Paxton freakouts minus the Bill Paxton, too. Loved him when I was 12, but.....

"Game over, man! Game over!!!"

nah, he's great - what am i saying...  
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Scar Tissue Films
Posted: January 6th, 2013, 6:38am Report to Moderator
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Cult classic?

It's an all time classic.


One of the greatest action movies ever created.

You're looking for depth in all the wrong places...
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jwent6688
Posted: January 6th, 2013, 8:01am Report to Moderator
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Gotta back up Rick here. Aliens is one movie I loved when I was young and still find it fascinating today.

I don't understand the disdain for Mr. Cameron. Just because he now makes billion dollar movies? I guess that makes him easy to hate on?

This was him in his prime.

James


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CoopBazinga
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Quoted from WillJonassen
And so much of this movie is just cheesy terrible.


Well, in that case.

Sign me up for a cheesy terrible movie everyday of the week.
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stevie
Posted: January 7th, 2013, 9:57pm Report to Moderator
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I've always been amazed that the tough Marine bird in this plays John Connor's foster mum in T2!

They look like two different people and I never realised for ages it was the same actress, lol

Great film. One of the all time best sequels too.


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WillJonassen
Posted: January 8th, 2013, 10:06pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from jwent6688

I don't understand the disdain for Mr. Cameron. Just because he now makes billion dollar movies?

James


It's not about the money, per say. I think I understand your stance, but it's a debate of whether making money is the important issue, or making art? There's no mistake that the man can make money, and there's no disdain from me or the other's on my side about that (though there may be a few who are purely jealous, if that's your meaning, sure, but not my own stance). I'm not one to care about money, or judge a film based on its profit. Check out the interviews with Scorsese and Cameron side by side on Scorsese's "Hugo." They may be on imdb or even youtube. It's extremely interesting to see Cameron admit his own faults there, sitting next to Scorsese as they talk about the new uses of 3D technology, with Cameron basically going "I never thought of that," and Scorsese just shrugging like, "duh."

Cameron is an engineer and he sees practical problems in an interesting way, for sure, coming up with new technologies, but he not only makes a lot of money, he has a lot to work with. He throws money at a problem, and covers up a whoole lot of film error with flash and big budget. He is aware of this trait, it seems, and knows... the viewers of his movies are basically suckers, and he is not making art to withstand the test of time in any way. If it does, like Aliens, it's almost blind luck. He seems to be aware of that, too, and just goes with it. Smart to go with it, of course, because was it him that makes it so, or the premise at the heart of Alien (which is essentially a Lovecraft inspired universe, making it naturally deep) that gave him this world to work with? He's just in business... and having fun, but he's all business and about putting sheep in the seats for their tickets so he can do his environmental message, underwater exploration, etc... He has side goals. Someone like Scorsese is trying to make a painting that moves, or a marble sculpture as he described now with the 3D. That's the difference between something like Avatar and Hugo. It's not a question of right or wrong, good or bad. It's more a question of taste, values, and personal integrity.

No lie, though, I owned the actual Space Marines Field Manual from Aliens back when I was a kid. It had every piece of equipment and weapons, specs on all the ships, histories of the characters, etc... That movie definitely got me, and I watched it again earlier this last year, in fact, back in May or so. Is it one of the greatest action movies ever? You know, it actually, really could be. It's definitely action, and when I think of so many fun rides over the years in that genre, it definitely stands out. None have depth, and I'm looking for depth in the wrong places, true. I think I look there, though, because of how it's sits next to Scott's Alien, which is a different genre all together, really, as a horror. Yet, I'm impressed that even this many people think so much of it this long after. It seems to be passing the stand of test of time test in its own way. And is cheesy terrible bad? No. Sometimes things are so wrong, they're right. It's just important to know how and why, and maybe I've become cynical, but I've sat in too many classes with these old, old gurus watching classics from way back and breaking them down, to think that it's good film or art in any serious way. Not a shining example of film theory, in other words, but an example of flashy on-screen gimmickry and recycled premise that easily captures masses. It has to be done though, right? I mean, someone has to make money. The last time I watched it so much blaring bad stuff stood out, I was laughing all the way through it. Still, a good heart-felt laugh, but a laugh. I've yet to see much from him that allows for the premise to be taken with full seriousness (consistently), or a masterpiece. Each is always missing one or more important aspect of film theory and practice... and he knows it. He's virtually said so, and doesn't really care. I think that's why he goes un-liked by the scholarly/classically schooled type of viewer, who pour their hearts and souls into the artistry of the work, and not with or for huge sums of money. But... bless his crazy little heart, he tries... pretty hard, and he does have his cause in life.

  

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WillJonassen  -  January 9th, 2013, 10:44pm
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