An Impressively Accurate Shot-for-Shot Remake of the ‘Alien’ Chest-Burster

Remember back in grade school when you would make short movies or recreate classic scenes with your friends (or, in the case of Star Wars Kid/George Michael Bluth, yourself) and they were a bit crude and shoddily made because you were kids but you loved them anyway? You made Jumanji with your stuffed lions and elephants; Raiders of the Lost Ark rolling some kind of sports ball down the stars.

Well, CineFix’s Homemade Movies team haven’t quite grown out of that phase, but they have taken their love of recreating classic movie scenes to a shockingly accurate level. This week, they employed the help of Black Nerd Comedy channel host Andre to recreate the iconic and emotionally scarring chest-burster scene from Alien. Everything, from the casting to the dialogue to John Hurt’s final, painful jerking motions before the nasty little creature emerges, is almost completely spot-on. They’ve even included a side-by-side comparison for proof. On YouTube, no one can hear you scream.

The Movies We Hated In 2012

My colleague Hillary Weston and I see a lot of movies. Sure, we both loved a bunch of movies this year, such as the delightful Moonrise Kingdom, the biting Bachelorette, the lovely Beasts of the Southern Wild. But there were a few that we downright hated. While we don’t always agree on which movies were, in fact, the worst, here’s a brief list of the films from this year that drove us into fits of fury.

Prometheus

Ridley Scott’s sort-of-prequel to Alien left me with more questions than answers. For example, why did they hire Guy Pearce to play an old man instead of, I dunno, an actual old person? Would that automated surgery machine take my health insurance? What’s Michael Fassbender’s daily caloric intake? (It must not be too high.) What I did take away was this: there is no way that this has anything to do with Scott’s original masterpiece other than casually tossing around “Alien prequel” will gain a lot of buzz. I couldn’t have explained the plot of this movie five minutes after leaving the theater, and I had thankfully forgotten Prometheus until I decided to come up with the worst movies I’d seen this year. So there you have it, folks: Prometheus is completely forgettable until you try your best to think of things that are horrifically bad.—TC

To Rome With Love

Oh Woody, how I love thee. But just because you have spent your entire career putting out film after film—back to back every year for what seems like an entire century now—doesn’t mean you should allow yourself to be so sloppy. Honestly, I doubt he even liked it, as even Allen’s character felt like someone doing a bad impression of himself. (Larry David, Owen Wilson, and Will Ferrell have all played better Woody Allens.) And don’t even both trying to find anything intelligent or redeeming about the women that populate the picture. Ellen Page’s boyish waif seductress was, to borrow a term in just about every one of his movies, "a pseudo intellectual" who was both manipulative and hollow; Greta Gerwig was an oblivious and passive goof who was supposed to be an intellectual but looked like an witless idiot; Alison Pill’s character was about as bland and lifeless as the canvas pants they wrongly put her in; and even the brilliant and beautiful Judy Davis had absolutely nothing to work with. The whole Penelope Cruz hooker storyline was absurd and a narrative bore, the Roberto Benigni "comedic" meditation on celebrity and the ego was unbearable to watch, and the father-turned-opera-singer sideline was no better than this Flintstones episode. By far the best part of the film was when I left to get a jumbo box of M&Ms and had to spend five minutes searching for the candy attendant. —HW

Silver Linings Playbook

There’s at least one movie released every Oscar season that everyone but me seems to like. This year, David O. Russell’s choppy mess of a movie fills the Little Miss Sunshine slot. Furthermore, this is the first movie that has ever forced me to leave the theater early. What did I hate most? The over-the-top quirkiness of the script? The propensity for each character to explain his or her madness rather than convey them with their actions? The fact the last thirty minutes are better than the first hour-and-a-half, at least according to every person I know who claims I cannot judge it solely on the first two-thirds of the film? (Go watch The Godfather and try to tell me the same thing, folks.) I’ve never been so grateful for Jessica Chastain, who will surely quash Jennifer Lawrence’s shot at an Oscar next spring. —TC

Lola Versus

After seeing Daryl Wein and Zoe Lister-Jones’s sophomore effort, I recall writing down a few initial thoughts: "This movie has little to no genuine feeling. The dialogue was trite. The characters were like posed mannequins in an Anthropologie window attempting to tell a joke." And the worst part: even the wonderful and talented Greta Gerwig as Lola and a score by Fall On Your Sword could not save this shallow attempt at an anti-typical romantic comedy. The filmmakers are both young, intelligent people who have lived in New York for years, but I have to wonder: have they ever spoken to other humans? Every moment was contrived and two-dimensional, and it was filled with pathetic portrayals of wallowing that weren’t even accurate save for the lovelorn title character’s affinity for binge drinking and sleeping with people she would later regret. Lola chastises herself, saying "I know I’m slutty, but I’m a good person," even though it’s made clear that her ex was the only person she had slept with until they broke up, and then she sleeps with two other guys. Even the sparse scenes with her ex have absolutely no chemistry, and neither character exhibit qualities that would make you root for them not to wind up alone. All in all, it’s a film that apparently takes place in New York, but not a New York you’ve ever seen. —HW

The Dark Knight Rises

Here’s the thing: I knew I would hate this. But I had to see it, because to completely avoid the movie blockbuster of the summer would prove my own ineptitude at being a blogger. (And, as a blogger, it is my duty to share my opinions.) Christopher Nolan finally wrapped up his dour Batman trilogy with an overwrought political epic complete with as many of The Christopher Nolan Players as possible. Christian Bale brooding? Check. Tom Hardy being gay-question-mark? Yup. Marion Cotilliard for no particular reason? Uh huh. And leave it to Nolan to even strip away all the fun from Catwoman, who, as played by Anne Hathaway, is more like an old, unenthused tabby who only occasionally gets to ride some stupidly overdesigned motorcycle. Don’t get me started on the fact that it took a good forty-five minutes for Batman to actually show up; it was less of a superhero movie and more of a chance for Christopher Nolan and co-writer/brother Jonathan to an Oscar-clip monologue to every single character. —TC

The Paperboy

I don’t know why I expected more from the guy who interpolated shots of incestuous rape with images of bacon sizzling on a griddle in Precious, but I can say without wavering that The Paperboy was not just my least favorite film of the year—it’s also the worst movie I’ve ever seen. I’m all for a piece of well-made trash, but no amount of scrubbing would reveal a diamond under those layers and layers of shit. It’s misogynistic, homophobic, exploitative all around, and relies on the popular opinion that the South is a cesspool of murder, rape, racism, alligators—things that can only take place down there. And something must be said when Macy Gray delivers the best performance in a cast made up of Zac Efron, Nicole Kidman, Matthew McConaughey, John Cusack, and Scott Glenn. —TC

‘Prometheus’ Is Totally an ‘Alien’ Prequel

The first real trailer for Ridley Scott’s Prometheus, dropped today, and it’s like a checklist of cool stuff: people yelling, people screaming, some space ships, explosions, and Charlize Theron in a towel. There are a bunch of ominous looking locales (never trust a giant head made out of stone), as well as the most foreboding tagline of all time: "They went looking for our beginning. What they found could be our end." Shivers!

By the way, it’s absolutely an Alien prequel. Scott and the producers have been coy about it, but there’s some tell-tale evidence sprinkled throughout the trailer. Some clues: There’s a split second shot of the famous "space jockey" chair from Alien at the :39 mark. The lettering on "Prometheus" slowly fades in line by line, just like the lettering did in Alien. So, mystery solved. 

Ridley Scott Planning Alien Sequels

After such unvarnished turds as Alien Resurrection and Aliens vs. Predator: Requiem, it’d be easy to think of the Alien series as officially defunct. Ridley Scott did. “I sat thinking about the franchise, which died on the road way back and was lying in the dust and I thought, ‘What I should do is go back. . .’” To whit, Scott is currently planning to make not one, but two Alien prequels. He spilled a number of details at last weekend’s Hero Complex Film Festival in LA.

Apparently the new installments will revolve around a creature known to hardcore fans as the “space jockey.” Appearing in only one scene in 1979’s Alien, the creature was massive, long-dead, and covered in some sort of exoskeleton. As for its origins, the film is completely mum. “No one ever asked that question: What’s the story there?” said Scott. “I was always surprised that people didn’t ask that one. Now we’re going to answer that question. To me, a prequel is interesting, much more interesting than a sequel.”

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If nothing else, it’ll be more interesting than Scott’s recent offereings. After films like A Good Year, Body of Lies, and Gladiator 2 (also known as Robin Hood), it can be easy to forget Scott directed Alien and Blade Runner so many moons ago.

R-Rated Movies, Unrated Toys

Walk into any comic book store and you’re likely to find toys inspired by R-rated material. There’s no shortage of Jason Vorhees and Leatherface collectibles; some of the action figures derived from Todd McFarlane’s Spawn boast such gruesome features as removable intestines. This may be commonplace now, but there was a time when the adult collector’s market hadn’t yet materialized, and making a toy for the kiddies based on such patently “mature” fare caused a ruckus. The first (talking!) Freddy Krueger doll had to be pulled from the shelves after some parents complained. There was even a somewhat recent stink about an Austin Powers doll that inquired, “Do I make you horny baby?” But the very first of these questionable play things was the vicious-looking alien doll that Kenner manufactured in conjunction with Ridley Scott’s 1979 Alien. A vintage commercial after the jump.

According to Geoff Bucher of the LA Times, widespread parental outrage had this toy yanked almost immediately—which of course makes it quite the collector’s item today. Roger Ebert went so far as to condemned it on national TV. We were all so innocent then, in 1979.