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Unique ID Code: 0000005132
Added by: DVD Reviewer
Added on: 22/5/2000 06:26
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Aliens: Special Edition (UK)

8 / 10
16 votes cast
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This time it`s war
Certificate: 18
Running Time: 148 mins
Retail Price: £19.99
Release Date:

In this action-packed sequel to `Alien`, Sigourney Weaver returns as Ripley, the only survivor from mankind`s first encounter with the monstrous Alien.

Her account of the Alien and the fate of her crew are received with skepticism - until the mysterious disappearance of colonists on LV-426 lead her to join a team of high-tech colonial marines sent in to investigate...

This special edition includes scenes eliminated prior to the film`s 1986 release which broaden the narrative scope and enrich the emotional impact of the film.

Special Features:
Interactive Menus
Scene Access
Theatrical Trailer
Interview with James Cameron
Behind-the-Scenes Footage of Effects
Massive Still Image Gallery
Includes over 17 Minutes of Restored Footage

Video Tracks:
Widescreen Anamorphic 1.85:1

Audio Tracks:
Dolby Digital 5.1 English

Subtitle Tracks:
CC: English

Directed By:
James Cameron

Written By:

Jenette Goldstein
William Hope
Bill Paxton
Lance Henriksen
Paul Reiser
Michael Biehn
Carrie Henn
Sigourney Weaver

Soundtrack By:
James Horner

Music From:
Aram Khachaturyan
Jerry Goldsmith

Director of Photography:
Adrian Biddle

Ray Lovejoy

Costume Designer:
Emma Porteus

Production Designer:
Peter Lamont

Gale Anne Hurd

Executive Producer:
Walter Hill
David Giler
Gordon Carroll

Your Opinions and Comments

9 / 10
A film which in its own right is an excellent and highly enjoyable action film, actually comes close to being as good as its prequel. The film is presented in 1.85:1 anamorphic format (it was filmed in 1.85:1). The quality is once again very good, although some compression artefact can be seen once or twice. The print is occasionally grainy but it is rarely noticeable. Sound is spot on, being genuinely eerie at some points. The extra features are good, plenty of stills and some behind the scenes/production camcorder footage of various test shoots etc providing some insight into the film. The only real problem is the fact the it is the special edition, which is not as good as the original. Shame that it isn`t possible to branch past these poor scenes as with The Abyss. Another excellently presented DVD however.
posted by Ben Chud on 17/8/2000 02:31
8 / 10
Aliens is an excellent follow-up to the classic original. This Special Edition features scenes eliminated prior to the films original theatrical release.

The feature is presented in anamorphic 1.85:1, and is generally good. It doesn`t measure up to the restored Alien in terms of image quality however, as there is noticeable grain throughout the film. It still looks worlds better than my old pan & scan VHS copy though (when watched side by side you really do appreciate DVD even more).

Sound is good, but perhaps more use could have been made of the surrounds. That said, Alien screeches and marine pulse rifle fire all sound great, and the music is suitably eerie. Not the best 5.1 mix I`ve heard, but it does the job.

Extras are lacking in content somewhat, but there are interviews and behind-the-scenes footage, as well as the usual trailer.

Definitely worth picking up, as part of the Alien Legacy set, or as an individual disc. Aliens is a very good film, with enough action and suspense to keep most people entertained. The restored footage adds depth to the film, giving more insight into Ripley`s attitude towards Newt, as well as including some nice effects scenes.
posted by Chris Gould on 2/11/2000 01:09
9 / 10
James Cameron has made some amazing movies in his career, like Terminator`s, Abyss, True Lies and so on, but this one is the best one.It`s called Aliens and this time it`s war.
I have always rated this movie very high and It`s 5th best movie ever on my list of movies.The screenplay made by Cameron is one of the best ever and the visual look of this film is awesome and beautiful.I`m a big Alien fan and I had to get this "also" at any cost.It all started late 80`s, just kidding, this is a dvd review, not my biography.The actors are the jewels of Cameron (like Michael Biehn, Bill Paxton, Lance Henricksen) and so the team spirit is phenomenon.Ridley Scott`s quiet horror has now changed to "big guns, killing bugs action movie", which is a good change to the Alien movies and gives some priceless value to the trilogy.The video is quite clear, but some kind of shapness is missing to get full points, hard to say.The audio is the same class, good but far from perfect.James Horner`s army score didn`t had enough deepness and it didn`t come to life, as much as I had thought, but aliens & human scream`s and all those crazy shooting were really clear.The Menus are one of my favourites, the radar piiping and soldiers walking in the tunnels.The extra features are quite nice, including some interviews, cool making of video clips, pics, and so on.
Now to the main point of this dvd, which is the longer version of Aliens and I just love it.I allways wanted to see to people who originally lived on the planet and so the dream comed true.Aliens Special Edition holds about 17minutes or was it 28 of valueable cool footage during the movie and it made the movie even more greater.Aliens couldn`t get any better of this I gotta say.

posted by Hamill82 on 3/1/2001 10:48
8 / 10
This version of Aliens is overall pretty sweet. I always loved this film when I was just a little boy as I was never allowed to watch it. When I was finally allowed to watch it I was totally amazed but I never really learnt to appreciate it until more recently. This special edition is very hard to find on video so I jumped at the chance to get it on DVD. Aye.

Content:- The perfect sequel really. It is different from the first film and shouldnt really be that closely compared to it. It is a great film on its own merits goddammit. The acting is fricking good. Action is exciting. Effects well ahead of its time and still stand up to this day. The ending is one of the best to any film ever. Aye.

Video:- This transfer is pretty good although not perfect. It was a tad gritty in bits, but I cant really complain. It really is nice though compared to the quality of the transfer in the trailer. No complaints really.

Audio:- I cant really judge this yet as I have only heard it on a crappy wee mono TV but I can say that it was all crisp and clear and everything.

Features:- The extra stuff here is a bit misleading sadly. It says on the box that there is "spectacular behind the scenes footage" but it isnt that spectacular really. This footage is only really shortish clips, mostly without sound of all the folk p***ing about with the various models and effects. The interview is alright and there are plenty of photos though.

Overall:- A worthy and well made disc. Goes well with the (slightly better) Alien disc.

posted by Blazingmonga on 20/1/2001 01:06
9 / 10
This is an excellent sequel to a classic film. James Cameron really delivered the goods with this. Ripley is awoken after 57 years of hypersleep and finds out that the planet LV-426, where she found the alien from the first film, has been colonised. She joins a team of marines who investigate the planet after contact is lost with the colonists. They find a young girl called Newt and loads of aliens. From then on, we get some great action scenes such as the first battle, the second battle which takes place in subduded red lighting and the end sequence with a power suited Ripley fighting the Alien Queen. There are also some tense moments especially Ripley and Newt`s encounter with the facehuggers. Aliens was nominated for 7 Oscars including Sigourney Weaver for best actress, art direction, original score and editing. It won 2 for visual effects and best sound effects editing. There is no reason why it shouldn`t have got all those nominations. The cast give excellent performances, the visuals are wonderful and the plot is great. And it has aged very well for a 15 year old film. All in all, a classic sci-fi action sequel.

The DVD is excellent although not as good as Alien. The picture is widescreen anamorphic and does not have quite as much sharpness or crispness of Alien. This is still a excellent transfer and is better then VHS. The audio is perfect and is just what this film needs. All the explosions, gunfire and other effects come across terrificly and is one of the best DD5.1 mixes I have ever heard. The menus are splendid and goes to show what Fox can do. Extras wise we get a 12 minute interview with James Cameron filmed in 1986. He reveals lots of interesting facts and it is well worth a look. There is also 7 and a half minutes of behind the scenes footage which includes sculpting and testing of chestbursters, testing and sculpting of the alien queen and building of model shots. These are very good and are a nice addition. There is also a large photo gallery and a trailer. Quite a good collection but could have had more.

Overall, this is a classic film presented on a very good disc.
Although I think more extras could have been added such as
an isolated version of James Horner`s score, a couple more trailers and some more behind-the-scenes material, we still get a good package. This also the Special Edition which contains 17 minutes extra footage that was not in the original version and it would have been nice to have both versions available. But I guess we can`t have everything. This almost a must buy purchase snd makes a great companion to the Alien disc.
posted by AD1986 on 1/4/2001 03:19
9 / 10
This is the finest movie "ego maniac" James Cameron has ever done, filmed on a shoe string budget the movie proves that you don`t need money thrown at it to make it good.

I`m not sure about the extra scenes, I think I prefer the original version but hey they don`t make that much of a difference. The effects look a little shoddy but that doesn`t deter from the fact that this is an all-time classic and not to mention best sequel ever!

The picture is good, far better than any VHS version but grain does pop up a lot, James Horner`s soundtrack really kicks ass and pounds along at a furious rate. The extras are a little disappointing but with a movie this fine who really gives a Jim Belushi?

Reeks of awesomeness!
posted by James Clews on 6/4/2001 02:42
10 / 10
in stead of suspense filled horror,james camoren went for balls
out action with sum superb performences from the main cast,
the films one of the best around but the lack of extras makes
the disc weak the best feature is the 17 minutes of extra footage the picture is excellent and the sound will give you a
run for your money.
posted by verhoeven on 27/11/2001 19:44
9 / 10
This has got to be one of my most watched movies ever. Cameron takes Scott`s masterpiece and goes for the jugular in a different way. The result: an absolute tour de force. To me it’s got to be one of the most perfect movies ever made.

I’ve heard some complain that for an action movie it’s got too long a build up, that the first hour is boring. Well I say no. That’s called masterful pacing. We all know what the critters look like and what they’re capable of so Cameron, in his wisdom, holds them back for the first 60 minutes, letting things simmer. Investing time in the pace. Giving the film some body and weight by allowing us to further know Ripley (Weaver received an Academy award nomination for this film) and, to some extent, the marines accompanying her back to LV-426. As both Writer and Director Cameron consciously manipulates the characters and unsuspecting audience by painting them into an ever-shrinking space. Driving the narrative towards the finale, cutting off every conceivable exit bit by bit, until we’re trapped. By the time this baby hits the final act it’s pressure cooker time! I remember after seeing this in the cinema it felt like I hadn’t been able to breath for the last two hours and ten minutes. If you’re going to call this an action movie (and believe me, it’s far more than that) it doesn’t mean to say there has to be wall to wall action from beginning to end, as so many excuses for films employ these days. The monotony of it just becomes boring.

We have the special edition gracing this release. Restoring 17 minutes of footage cut prior to the theatrical release (enabling cinema chains to squeeze an extra screening per day) this version subtly adds a few new things to the mix. On top of this we have an anamorphic transfer together with a loud DD 5.1 soundtrack and things don’t get much better.

Is there a downside? The short answer is yes. It’s a shame there’s some compression artefact evident. More extras would have been nice and, like Cameron’s T2 and The Abyss, it would have been nice to have the choice of both theatrical and special editions. That aside – genius!
posted by The Shenk-man on 4/3/2003 11:32
3 / 10
the lady from alien1 goes to another planet the begining is boaring but the end is quit good
posted by black_chuck on 4/3/2003 12:11
9 / 10
We all know the story by now, and if you dont then watch it!
One of the best sequels ever made along with Empire Strikes Back and Terminator 2 (poss best sequel ever)

On the disk we get the Special Edition which has got 17 minutes of footage put into the film which just gives us a litle more story and a cool gun turret bit :)

Picture looks really good for an old film, and the sound is great too

Extras are pretty good lots of pictures cool menus, interview with James Cameron, behind the scenes footage too, but no Commentary by Cameron, that would have been cool.

Anyway good disk very good film buy it, or get the box set.......cant wait for the new 9 disk box-set coming at the end of 2003
posted by Jackass on 1/8/2003 00:43
9 / 10

Regarded as one of the best sequels ever, James Cameron (Terminator, Titanic,Aybiss) has created an action master piece. The story pretty straight forward, but instead of another ship crew Cameron introduced Colonial Marines which consist of cast members Michael Beihn Bill Paxton Lance Henriksen to name a few and Sigourney Weaver returning to her role as Ellen Ripley. Great performances from everyone including Paul Reiser as the conniving Burke.


The sound is good. The Dolby, like the Alien feels at home with this film.


The picture is good, the best anyone has seen it especially with the 17 minutes of extra footage.


Not as packed as Alien, no commenatry by Cameron which is a shame. Though the 17 minutes of intergrated footage is good and bumps the running time up to 147 minutes. The rest is just filler, trailers an interesting, but old interview from Cameron and behind the scenes of effects. An overall good effort from fox in need of a little more.
posted by the_film_king on 6/8/2003 21:42
7 / 10
Intro- Aliens, the sequel to the excellent first film. Fans of the franchise continue to debate whether the 2nd film is better than the 1st. Obviously, the 3rd and 4th are something of a disaster and therefore they are ruled out. Many fans say that the 1st film is better than the 2nd and vice versa. Well. you can`t really compare the 2 since one is a horror and the other is an action. If you really must know what I think, I personally prefered the 1st over the 2nd (although it comes a close second). Unlike with most sequels, it doesn`t re-hash anything from the previous movie except in the Special Edition where a sequence showing the innards of the Sulaco which is remininscent of the 1st film.

Here, Ripley (it is revealed that her first name is Ellen) is found by a rescue crew after hibernating for some 57 years and it is revealed that she has a daughter who died recently. At this point apart from decreased IQ, the Company had colonised the planet previously explored by the Nostromo crew. They are determined to cover up their illegal actions over the past years and removes Ripley`s flight officer license for good. A businessman named Burke approaches Ripley and offers her a place with a group of marines but she declines at first. After experiencing a nightmare (James Cameron trademark), Ripley decides to accept Burkes offer.

Aliens is one of Jim Cameron`s best (IMO, Terminator 2 remains Jim`s best ever work to date), a fairly fast paced action thriller an unusual contrast to Scott`s original. Like I said before, there is very little use of re-hashed dialogue. Everything there is original. Some might argue the acting (particulary Bill Paxton) is rather over the top in places and therefore finds the 1st film better acted.

Video- Despite being THX certified, the video quality is rather disappointing. Aliens is presented in 1.85:1 anamorphic widescreen, the only film in the franchise to be shot in that ratio (the others are shot in 2.35:1). The transfer is very grainy in generally with occaisional blips from time to time. It is not as visually stunning compared to the original and put more emphasis towards action. Many of Jim Cameron`s trademarks are here, nice cutting (a fade cut from Ripley to planet), nightmare sequences and nuclear explosions.

Audio- The audio is slightly better. Presented in DD 5.1, the mix is quite a blast. The surrounds are put to good use of conveying the atmosphere of the derelict planet and the intense action when those things attack. The chilling and subliminal musical score by Jerry Goldsmith has been replaced with a more operatic score by James Horner. The score fits in especially when the action sequence kick in.

Extras- The extras diminish when the Alien series progresses foward. This DVD is missing an audio commentary by Cameron (he provides one in the Quadrilogy series) instead there is a fairly brief interview with him which was conducted around the time of release. It lasts 16 minutes. It`s quite interesting but it is also rather short. :(

Next are a bunch of very short behind the scene footage which shows things like the eggs and the face hugger in operation. Last but not least are a small collection of stills. The film is packaged in an amaray case with the chapter stops part of the artcover.

Overall- A superb sequel to the original but both have a different experience. Alien is scary and tense while Aliens is just plain exciting. The Quadrilogy release for this film has plenty of insightful featurettes and an all new commentaries. It also gives you the choice to watch the original 1986 theatrical version or the 2.5 hour version on this DVD. For most fans, it`s no more Alien at this point.
posted by alias-rf2 on 22/11/2005 22:43