A group of scientists has cloned Lt. Ellen Ripley, along with the alien queen inside her, hoping to breed the ultimate weapon. But the resurrected Ripley is full of surprises for her "creators," as are the aliens they've imprisoned. And soon, a lot more than "all hell" breaks loose. To combat the creatures, Ripley must team up with a band of smugglers, including a mechanic named Call (Ryder), who holds more than a few surprises of her own.
Perhaps these films are like the Star Trek
movies: The even-numbered episodes are the best ones. Certainly this film (directed by French stylist Jean-Pierre Jeunet) is an improvement over Alien 3
, with a script that breathes exciting new life into the franchise. This chapter is set even further in the future, where scientists on a space colony have cloned both the alien and Ripley (Sigourney Weaver), who died in Alien 3
; in doing so, however, they've mixed alien DNA with Ripley's human chromosomes, which gives Ripley surprising power (and a bad attitude). A band of smugglers comes aboard only to discover the new race of aliens--and when the multi-mouthed melonheads get loose, no place is safe. But, on the plus side, they have Ripley as a guide to help them get out. Winona Ryder is on hand as the smugglers' most unlikely crew member (with a secret of her own), but this one is Sigourney's all the way. --Marshall Fine