James Cameron's ambitious and kick-ass science fiction movie Aliens was first released in the UK twenty six years ago last month and much debate still surrounds the film: Is it really better than Ridley Scott's more cerebral and perhaps more iconic original film Alien? Is it better than Prometheus for that matter? Is it the greatest sequel of all time? Is it the best movie James Cameron ever made? Is it the greatest sci-fi or action movie ever? The answer to all those questions is a resounding YES. Indeed, here's 50 reasons (in no particular order) why it might just be the greatest film of all time:
50. Proved That There Was A Good Way To Sequel Alien
For many Alien is the standout sci-fi/horror genre crossover masterpiece that redefined movie history. I am one of those people. The movie, with its claustrophobic minimalism and tension is truly a work of film based art. Who thought anyone could rival that? Well, James Cameron obviously did. Cameron could have opted to copy the successful formula laid down by Ridley Scott but instead opted for a different approach entirely. Bringing the big spectacle to the Alien universe with an intense, action heavy, sci-fi horror that just works beautifully.
49. James Cameron
Having made a name for himself with a little known low-budget sci-fi/horror called Terminator, Cameron expanded his game and single-handedly convinced 20th Century Fox to let him direct the Alien sequel - a film that was not planned after the merits of the relative commercial miss-hit of Alien. Without the box office success of the Terminator, Fox would not have commissioned Aliens at all. Most people would agree that the future war sequences in Terminator and T2 were some of the best sequences in the films and thanks to Camerons sci-tech vision, Aliens basically IS those sequences. With heavy duty sci-fi weapons and sci-fi vehicles and sets, Cameron delivered us an Alien shaped future war, the bloody legend.