With our ALIENS screening just days away on Wednesday December 8th, AccessReel has decided to countdown the 5 reasons we love the James Cameron movie. The Number 3 reason is a brawling bunch of warriors – the colonial marines of the U.S.S. Sulaco.
Something has happened to the colony on the planet LV-426. It’s the same place where Ellen Ripley and the now-deceased crew of the Nostromo, found the alien eggs 57 years ago. Ripley’s employer the Weyland-Yutani Corporation asks Ripley to be a consultant as they dispatch a unit of marines to investigate what happened.
Their commanding officer Lieutenant Gorman has a poor rapport with the unit and seems more concerned with the Corporation’s agenda. The marines respect Corporal Dwayne Hicks (Michael Biehn) and their sergeant Al Apone (Al Matthews). The unit is full of memorable hard cases, perhaps none harder than Private Jenette Vasquez. Then there is her opposite in Private Hudson; as played by Bill Paxton, the jumpy marine never sees the up side of any situation. Hudson the nervous hothead is comic relief and yet still a believable and memorable character in the ALIENS universe. Finally there’s Bishop (Lance Henriksen) the android executive officer of the Sulaco. As mysterious in his way as Corporation representative Carter Burke, Bishop’s agenda remains a mystery to Ripley for much of the film.
The colonial marines are bad–ass. Just like Private Hudson says they are. The first time you see ALIENS these marines are intimidating almost to the point of seeming cartoonish. They fear nothing and they don’t think anyone, anywhere is tougher than they are. As Sergeant Apone tells him team. “We’re gonna conquer, and we’re gonna kick some, is that understood?”
Director Cameron and writers David Giler and Walter Hill used World War 2 movie archetypes to create their diverse unit of colonial marines; this and memories of the then recent Vietnam War are referenced to set up the action to come. These marines are tough, disciplined and well-trained, but they have no idea of the enemy they are about to face.
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See ALIENS at our special AccessReel Members’ Screening on Wednesday December 8th.Click here for details.