200 years after the events of Alien 3, Ripley is cloned by military scientists eager to weaponise the xenomorph. Good-looking and humorous Part 4 with an excellent cast of character actors; tonal inconsistency and a wayward third act destabilise the storytelling. The compulsion to find new twists undoes some of the excellent earlier material presented here.
The 2003 re-edit (actually shorter than the 1979 original version) reinstates some scenes, clarifies some plot and character points and removes others (Ash is no longer a recent crew addition, and so the conspiracy element is toned down). By no means essential, but a chance to marvel again at this still-influential movie.
The former stars of a Star Trek-like TV show are mistaken for genuine space heroes by an alien race searching for saviours. Three Amigos! / A Bug’s Life redux, perhaps, but with excellent casting, a sense of fun, and affection for genre and conventions (of both kinds) throughout.
The Ghostbusters have to reunite to battle another supernatural threat to New York. As much a remake of the 1984 original as a sequel, this passable reprise lacks the first film’s freshness, but has a few good lines and performances nevertheless.
A commercial space vehicle answers a distress call. Perhaps showing its age in some of its choices, nevertheless Alien is a storming piece of cinema, is outstandingly designed, directed and acted, and remains both relevant and influential 40 years on. A classic.
A beat-up robot falls in love with a sleek new model. Superior SF comedy/romance from Pixar; the last hour is knockabout fun with an environmental/healthy living message, but the first 30 minutes is a sublime silent (apart from music from Hello, Dolly! of all things) movie of its own.
A creature is summoned to challenge a boy whose mother is dying. Splendid dark fantasy, equal parts The BFG/ET and something more akin to Pan’s Labyrinth, which pulls out all the emotional and VFX stops in its ultimately uplifting tale about the power of stories and truths.