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Aliens vs Predator


 

You've seen it in the cinema, now get to watch it at home! The iconic monsters from the two franchises battle each other on Earth for the first time on film, as they have in the comic-book world. The discovery of an ancient pyramid buried in Antarctica sends a team of scientists and adventurers to the frozen continent. There, they make an even more terrifying discovery: two alien races enaged in an ultimate battle. Diehard fans of both the Predator and Alien series have waited a long time for this crossover. The first match-up became a reality in a series of Darkhorse comics, followed by a computer game that was plagued by licensing hassles. Now, Predators and Aliens get to duke it out on the big screen. The story is a simple one: a group of specialists is invited by a wealthy philanthropist to travel to a remote Antarctic island where a strange structure was discovered through satellite imagery, two thousand feet below the ice. When they get there, the group of scientists discover that they're in a secret hunting ground where evil creatures battle to the death. The humans try to escape with their lives. It certainly helps to have seen the other movies in the Predator and Alien series, because they use the same conventions. Aliens need hosts to reproduce, Predators have three modes of special vision, Aliens bleed acid, Predators have nuclear bombs on their wrists, and so on. It's not like you'll miss any major plot points, and you'll certainly get the gist, but if you know the players coming in, it'll be more fun to watch. There are a number of human characters which we meet before things get nasty. There's the Italian archaeologist (Raoul Bova), the chemical engineer (Ewen Bremner), the arctic guide (Sanaa Lathan), the paramilitary dude (Tommy Flanagan), and the rich benefactor (Lance Henriksen) who made his money in the robotics industry. There are several others, too, so you know there will be some good eatin' for the Aliens. Lathan gives the strongest performance, and she somehow manages to avoid becoming a second-rate Ripley (Sigourney Weaver) from the Alien movies. Perhaps the biggest surprise about AvP is that it's rated PG-13. This is good news for 20th Century Fox, but a lot of fans might think that means it's too kid-friendly to be cool. Don't worry! There's no shortage of violence, although most of the gruesome visuals are saved for the creatures (non-human blood and guts won't get an R rating). There aren't many human entrails being splattered across the room, but they do a good job of keeping the suspenseful feel of the other films, even though they're not as graphic. The fights between Alien and Predator are great to see, and feature a lot of memorable moments. The only problem is that the dark setting makes some of the best parts of the movie too difficult to tell exactly what's happening. This is certainly true for the first Alien / Predator slugfest, where two grayish-blackish blobs are rolling around for several minutes. The action is easier to see later on, so don't get discouraged. Writer / director Paul W. S. Anderson does a good job of remaining faithful to both series. He previously directed Mortal Kombat, Soldier, and Resident Evil, so he's got a flair for this kind of flick. Both the Alien and Predator series rely heavily on suspense, cool effects, and a hunter-and-prey atmosphere, all of which work well here. The creatures all look great. It's clearly a combination of puppetry and computer graphics, so even though there are a few shots that aren't entirely realistic, it's definitely above average overall. Overall: 4/5 Alien vs Predator sets out to be an exciting sci-fi experience and it succeeds. They don't waste too much time getting to the action, and even though it's not as gory as some people will want, it's suspenseful and occasionally scary, so you'll find yourself rooting for one side or the other. There are a few inconsistencies (the Aliens seem to burst out and grow much faster) but they're forgivable. This is a nice compliment to the other films in both series, and it's certainly better than Alien: Resurrection. The story is surprisingly engaging, and you won't see who's going to get killed from a mile away. Ever since Danny Glover walked past what looked like an Alien's bones at the end of Predator 2, fans have wanted to see these two creatures duke it out and the time has finally arrived! You'll be biting nails - with both sets of teeth.

Written by: Michael D. Lynn

DVD Features:
  • Special Feature Information:
    • Commentary By Paul WS Anderson And Lance Henriksen And Sanaa Latham
    • Commentary By the Special Effects Team
    • Inside Look Hide And Seek
    • Inside Look Elektra With Jennifer Garner
    • Inside Look Robots With Chris Wedge
    • Conception Featurette
    • Visual Effects Featurette
    • Alien Vs Predator The Comic Book
    • Monsters In Miniature
    • HBO Special
    • The Making Of
    • ADI Workshop
    • Miniature Whaling Station
    • Face Huggers And Eggs
    • Trouble At The Mouth Of The Tunnel
    • Deleted Scenes With Optional Commentary
    • Storyboard Gallery
    • Concept Art
    • Tom The Alien Factor
    • The Biggest Match Up Of All Time Clips
  • Aspect Ratio: 2.35 Wide Screen, 16:9 Wide Screen
  • Available Audio Tracks: DTS 5.1, Dolby Digital 5.1
  • Main Language: English
  • Sub Titles: French, Spanish
  • Hearing Impaired: English

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