Sigourney Weaver showed up at a recent screening of the first two “Alien” movies and did some interviews about the franchise. She was asked about the possibility of a future installment and actually made it sound like it was something she would be interested in. While the third movie had one of cinema’s greatest directors in David Fincher, it was lacking thanks to studio interference. The less said about the fourth movie, the better.
However, Weaver said in the interview that she would be open to a fifth movie and said there is more story to tell. Of course, what isn’t mentioned here is that there has been a fifth movie with the prequel “Prometheus,” but Weaver was talking more about her character Ripley’s storyline and the chance to finish telling the story of her “existential hero.” With that in mind, here is a look at how Weaver’s Ripley has progressed through the franchise.
The first “Alien” movie came out in 1979 and was a straight up horror movie, a haunted house story that took place in outer space. Ripley was one of the officers aboard the Nostromo as they went to answer the distress call of an abandoned ship. When they get there, the Alien Queen attacks and kills her crew, leaving her alone to fight and try to defeat the monster before it kills her as well. She was just about the perfect female action hero, never helpless and always scrappy.
Ripley took another step forward in the follow up “Aliens.” The movie starts up 57 years after the first one and Ripley has been kept in stasis and is woken when found. She testifies to what happened in the first movie, but no one believes her and she loses her job. However, when contact is lost with a colony on LV-426, she is asked to accompany a crew of Marines to the planet where an infestation of aliens attacks and kills almost everyone. Unlike the first movie, which was horror, this one is more of a sci-fi action movie and Ripley is even more aggressive than ever in her battles with the Queen.
The third movie follows immediately after the second and sees the survivors from that movie crash onto a prison planet, killing everyone but Ripley. In this movie, an egg was aboard the escape pod, and when it hatches, it starts killing people on the planet but refuses to kill Ripley. This is where the news that the Weyland-Yutani Corporation planned to use the aliens as weapons. Ripley’s story ended here, as she realized that the embryo of the Alien Queen was growing inside her and she sacrificed herself to save the world.
Despite her death, Ripley returned in the fourth movie, “Alien Resurrection.” However, this was not the Ripley that fans had grown to admire from the first three movies. Each film had a clone in it, and this one was no different with the clone actually being Ripley. Somehow, the Alien Queen is still in the clone and is used to make weapons, but Ripley is also given superhuman powers from the Alien’s DNA. It is not a fitting conclusion to Ripley’s story and ended the franchise on a sour note.