Continuing with the Alien quadrilogy, the first thing to note about the second installment, Aliens, directed by James ‘box office king’ Cameron is considerably different in tone to its predecessor.Whereas Alien is more horror based, using a more subtle and suspenseful approach and a limited view of the alien in question, Aliens is much more an action Sci-Fi film with (as the name suggests) significantly more aliens for your money. It’s still hugely entertaining but lacks the aforementioned restraint of Alien, though this is hardly surprising, restraint is not really a word in Cameron’s vocabulary. Not that this is a fault with the film and indeed, in a film where most of the characters are soldiers it is in keeping with their ‘shoot-‘em-up’ attitude.
 It’s also interesting to note some clear similarities to Avatar, most obviously shown in the large lifting equipment that features throughout the film and is a key feature in the scene where Ripley goes head to head with the alien queen. Avatar has similar, albeit updated equipment used by the military on Pandora.
 But back to the film in hand; the soldiers are effective in their blasé and macho attitude upon being dispatched back to the planet LV-426 where the first film took place. Set 57 years after the events of the first film,the planet is now inhabited and after initially laughing at Ripley’s alien experience, they are sent to investigate after the disappearance of a family.  Sigourney Weaver is once again fantastic as Ripley and takes her badassery to the next level in this film and Bill Paxton’s knucklehead soldier character is at first amusing but soon incredibly irritating but brings much of the film’s humour to the proceedings.
 Overall Aliens is a thoroughly enjoyable ride. For me, the subtlety, suspense and jocular team dynamic of Alien is more enjoyable to watch though there are evidently many who prefer the explosiveness of the sequel. I’ll leave you to decide for yourself…


Verdict: *****


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