Review: Alien vs. Predator

Not as good as Aliens nor Predator, but it’s still better than any of their sequels (and with a interesting spin at no extra cost).

When a satellite over Antarctica hints at a previously undiscovered underground (make that under ice) structure, industrialist Charles Bishop Weyland (Lance Henriksen) assembles a team to drill into the ice and be the first to catalogue this significant archaeological find. Alexa Wood (Sanaa Lathan) is asked to lead an unprepared team into an unknown and dangerous environment, but what they discover won?€™t just re-write the history books; it may wipe out the all life on planet Earth.

The catch phrase for the film is, ?€?Whoever wins, we lose.?€? That?€™s not exactly correct, but it does set the stage for the biggest modern movie monster showdown since Freddy vs. Jason. Ever since the appearance of the ?€?Alien?€? skull in the spaceship for Predator 2, bets were in being placed. Who would win in a showdown: the face-hugging, acid-blooded, hive-minded aliens or the ?¼ber-teched, hunter-cultured, dreadlocked predators?

As far as franchise blending goes, Freddy vs. Jason was spotty at best, but its target audience didn?€™t mind as long as their favorite killer maniacs got their due on screen. With almost as many years in the making, AVP not only builds an interesting (although not entirely plausible) premise, it also manages to integrate the best elements that made each franchise unique. A shadowy and maze-like environment, characters we learn just enough about to care about a little (before they die horribly), and secrets about what each creature is and does all contribute to a clever production design that acts as both story setting and battle arena.

Writer/director Paul W.S. Anderson has again shown knowledge of his subject; he not only had to continue two established storylines but integrate them realistically enough to make the plot work. The Antarctic ruins, for example, are a joy for fans to behold; as each chamber becomes obvious in its function, they serve to build the tension perfectly. The inclusion of Lance Henriksen (who played the Bishop android in Aliens and Alien3) helps lend a familiar face to the story to move it along, but actress Sanaa Lathan adds a fresh face to the franchise and a possible jumping point to further stories if the film turns a profit.

To be fair, there have been numerous graphic novels (read: comic books) to draw the right story from, something that Freddy and Jason never really had. Although the hard R-rated purists may not love the film completely (apparently, you can show all the green-glowing and acid blood splatter that you want but human gore is a no-no) with a mere PG-13 film, but the action and effects keep coming and don?€™t disappoint. Anyone who ever smiled at the thought of aliens and predators battling for supremacy will certainly get their money?€™s worth.

(a two and a half skull recommendation out of four)

163 comments

  1. HAH! your an idiot if you thought this was better than any Alien film. if ALien 5 was Sigourney Weaver in a room reading the screenplay to AVP would be more entertaining than this shit!

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  2. Eh, it was entertaining and i think that was the sole point of the movie, not to be good in an artistic sense. Anyway, what did suck is i half expected a love scene between that black girl and the predator. GAG ME!

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  3. Boy, I WISH Fox were paying me, but, alas, I really did enjoy it for what it was, but I still would like to see an R-rated version. I’ll say HERE and NOW it doesn’t make sense that Fox would seek a PG-13 film; most of the people that actually remember Alien and Predator films have no problem getting into an 17+ age limited movie.

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  4. I don’t belive that this movie can be judged based on either the alien or the predator series alone. This is a new series. The fact is simply this, those that are fans of either series will probably enjoy this movie. Keep in mind this is not supposed to be a great movie, its just a movie that entertains and that’s it, take the movie at face value. Now that being said, I was a little disapointed in the lack of actual fighting between the two species and the fact that it looked like the african american woman was falling in love with the predator was a bit redicoulous, sorry bad speller. I think if the movie had just started with the predators entering into a pyramid filled with ravenous aliens would have been better.

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  5. I thought this movie had a lot of wasted potential. The script was horrible, and I think it would have been a lot cooler if they just had the entire research team used for breeding right away. Then have the main focus be on the team of Predators hunting down all the Aliens in crazy assed fight scenes. You could just subtitle the Predator conversations and it would have been way cooler than having the dumbest scientists ever get in the way of the ass-kicking.

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  6. I have a question for the people that absolutely hated this. What did you expect this movie to be? Seriously a movie like this is meant to simply entertain, its not a blockbuster movie with great lines, and great plots.

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  7. If you’re not going to have a good script, at least up the ante on the action sequences. I swear, ALL of the logic in the film was so flawed, that it made me wish that they just dumped the script all together and just made a montage of awesome fight choreography. They focused way too much on the retarded scientists. The movie was supposed to be about Aliens and predators and instead we ended up with a movie about incompetent morons.

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  8. Yes, we all knew this movie would most likely suck, have lame acting etc. But do you know what? They had my $13 from the first teaser. Dammit!

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  9. You know, I thought it wasn’t as bad as some people say. Sure, not the greatest movie ever made. This is an ACTION movie. Its main focus is not in the script or the storyline, but the fight scenes. When we think of AvP before seeing it, we probably think of an alien and a pred dukin it out, not pyramids or bottlecaps. Its not meant to be the next LOTR or Monty Python and the Holy Grail. Its all about the fights!

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  10. Ok…I LOVE the two franchises. I actually liked this movie, ALOT, mainly because I wasnt expecting anything out of it…Paul W.S. Anderson with Resident Evil and all…blargh! But, I loved AVP, and highly regard the code of honor and of the warrior within the Predator species….humans came and screwed up their hunt. I’ve read the novels and a few of the comics as well and I just love it all. I believe that a lot of the bashing is caused by far exceeding the expectations everyone had…but the PG-13 rating…ewww…I mean, I’ve heard from other people that went and saw it saying it was crap, when they dont know much to nill about the Alien and Predator movies, much less the story complexities and plots within the Dark Horse novels. I enjoyed it and plan on seeing it agaiin myself. oh BTW, if you’ve read the three book series ALIENS novels…then you’d realize FOX needs to make a new trilogy based on those alone because Ripley is overrated, lol. Atleast she comes back in the third book as an android! OH YEAH! And I think its very selfish and biased when fans and critics talk about how all the fans and stuff are dissapointed, ATLEAST don’t assume THAT much, geez, lol!

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  11. I liked the movie a lot. I thought the whole fox saying “Whoever Wins We lose” was toally WRONG! I mean, hello, preditors won and we don’t lose. Who came up with that saying anyway?? I wanted more gore and fighting! It was good but I’m just used to the stomach turning movies from the past. I wanted to be able to turn my head If I had to, but I didn’t need to in this movie. Oh, and if preditors hated us humans so much in the first 2 preditor movies, why didn’t they kill us off in the Preditor Vs Aliens?? I’ll probably go and see it again.

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  12. welll, the predators dont hate us, they’re assuming when they’re armed that they pose a challenge to them. So if your prepared to use your weapon, they’re ready to use theirs. Just think of the predator as a combination of Ninja and of the Samurai, and if you like that, then the way of the warrior the Predator follow is just plain flat out admirable, making you want to join them in their next big hunt, heheh.

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  13. I just saw the movie for the second time. I didn’t really like it the first time because I was expecting something different, but the second time I saw it I loved the movie

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  14. The Line ” we’re in the middle of a war” is very misleading because a war cannot exist unless the two parties actually know that they are at war. The aliens do not know that they are at war, they just kill everything in site so there for “It’s their war” is very misleading there is no war, its just a brawl

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  15. I notice everyone is saying that the story isn’t important since the action takes center stage, but the fights weren’t even that cool. They could have been much better….I counted two actually decent fights in 1hr 45min film. Even Jason Vs. Freddy had better action and they aren’t as cool as either the Predator or Alien franchises. The team up at the end was completely retarded too. It looked like some 70’s sitcom that should be called “Predator and Me” with them dancing under rainbows or something. They should have hired a much better director for the action scenes…It would be crazy if they got the guy who directed “Equilibrium” for the inevitable sequel.

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  16. They never did team up, the predator acknowledged her as an honorable fighter, nothing more, its a tradition and one of the spirit of the warrior from within. And she recognized this too and she gave herself to the beliefs of the predator when she allowed him to mark her. I do not understand why a few people cannot grasp things they cannot understand and just flat out insult it…

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  17. oh yeah peter, well, dont read the lines…they are pretty lame. But the queen alien has an IQ of around 130 or something, its in one of the novels. But yeah, I wasnt expecting too much from teh director, but I left the theater MORE than satisfied with how he made the Aliens and the Predators…the humans were just a mere annoyance though…

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  18. I understood the point behind it, but the execution made it seem really lame. Not to mention that they mark themselves with acid that can burn through the hull of a spaceship and for some reason it doesn’t continue boring its way through their skin. Btw, when she says “We better pick a side” in the movie and then helps the predator and in return receives help….how could you not call that “teaming up”? She killed an alien pretty much on accident and then all of a sudden he recognizes her as a distinguished and honorable warrior? Give me a break. Then they have the predator act like a galactic Martha Stewart showing her how to make a spear out of a stick and an Alien tail. Which for some reason the stick is some how impervious to acidic Alien blood residue. Then the head-shield which makes no sense at all considering that it would be burning her arm off and it was just a lame idea. I think the Predators are cool, but let’s not get all ‘way of the samurai’, I think the Predator would have killed the girl since she had a weapon and was an established ‘warrior’ if you looked at the past movies.

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  19. I ama fan of the Alien and Predator movies and have seen all of them. AVP was good. I’ve seen it twice already. I go to movies for two reasons, to see something thought provoking or for pure popcorn entertainment. AVP was not a great film but it was entertaining and worth the admisssions’ cost. I enjoyed myself and only hope that an R-rated AVP version or a sequel is done. I think ‘some’ critics/fans are not happy with the film because they assumed it was terrible and felt put off when FOX didn’t allow them much leeway time to critique or hear reviews on the film. I don’t rely on critic reviews because many critics praised “Eyes Wide Shut” and “The Village” (one of the worse movies of 2004) and I thought that both of those movies were poorly written, lame, and incredibly boring.

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  20. once the alien dies, the acid oxidizes. The predator had its finger in preserve so it didnt. This fact was in ALIEN or ALIENS. The lines in the movie were uber lame 😦 and there was no single predator conversation…we can thank Paul W.S. Anderson for not giving it a real good effort, though he did a good job at how the predators and the aliens are portrayed. The predators are no different from the Samurai in respect of their way of life, more or less so than they atleast. He didnt kill her because she had the weapon, and gave it to him as an offering, thus, didnt take her life becaue of courteousy. He was testing her after the scene with the spear and alien skull shield (remember she had no weapon after this). Its pretty basic body language. She killed her ‘friend’ infront of him, and the predator watched her as she did so…then caught the chestbuster and snapped its neck, heheh. Then after the battle in the temple was over, he accepted her as a fellow warrior. While the predator ship is cloaked and watching this unfold. She even risked her life to save his. BTW, samurai derive from Bushido, “way of the warrior” and were classified the greatest warriors that have ever lived on earth.

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  21. I am not sure who said that the villiage was terrible, but I agree, I think the villiage was the biggest waste of my time and money

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  22. If you really want to rip something lets rip M Night Shamalyans “The Village”, quite possible the worst movie i have seen in years

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  23. I liked the village…o well. And I agree with the notion that AVP was entertainment, thats it. I dunno maybe it was just me but I founf the queen friggin running after the predator and women very scary indeed, I held my breath during that whole part. I also really liked getting into the predator/warrior mindset. That was interesting. Its one of thsoe movies where if you go in expecting alot, and thinking alot, you’re gonna hate it. but if you just elt go and go wiht the flow, its awesome.

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  24. Concerning the Predalien, as previously mentioned, that all started out as a joke during the production of the “Aliens” action figures, in which one of the producers mentioned that the alien resembled a scorpion. This sparked the idea of comic book makers at Dark Horse Comics into incorperating the idea that the alien, in the gestation period, shares part of the genectic information of the host, taking on severable of it’s characteristics. Soon stores were brimming with Rhino, Arachnid, and Insect alien figures!! One point I have to mention is that the Dumbshit Director made the aliens somewhat incorrectly. If the aliens take on a different apearance depending on the host, then the aliens of the first alien movie should look different than those of AVP because the first alien came from the ship on Lv426. When Ripley’s team enters the ship, you see that the creatures came from those huge space jockey things, which are now all dead. This would mean that if the aliens of AVP looked the same, that the predators would have had to have taken them from the same ship on LV426, or that the space jockey was infact a huge predator!!!

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  25. lol dude…ya the figures were cool…the space jockey race created the alien species and was transporting them on that ship that was on LV426. If you read the novels, they exploit the alien homeworld….its like Jurassic Park basically, heheheh.

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  26. Is 33 million enough for a sequal. And by the way, the alien that came out of the predator at the end had the features of the predator, the wide mouth, so it could be a predAlien I think that part is based on the video game, perhaps not though

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  27. I would like to add that yesterday I found out that there will be an Underworld Part 2, and an Underworld Part 3, both Scott Speedman, and Kate Beckinsale will reprise their roles in both upcoming movies. Underworld 2 will be out in 2005

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  28. k you know the pods that the predator ship shot off in predator vs. aliens? well In predator 1 and 2 they landed the same way. In predator 1 he land3ed in the jungel, in 2, he hit LA

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  29. You also asked why didn’t the predators kill everyone off instantly didn’t you. Anyway the predators, since they are hunters, can’t kill you if you don’t have a weapon, it wouldn’t be a sport then

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  30. They also won’t kill you if you are sick, the predator didn’t kill the wyland guy at first because he had a lung condition that is what you were seeing, the predator kill him because the weyland dude attacked the predator and gave him no choice.

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  31. Just a guess but I think you might be a tad confused. In predator vs. Aliens the story changes and it says that the predators were the ones that found alines and brought them to the pyramid to hunt. In the alien movies humans happened to find the aliens on a ship or something like that. I think you may be asking two different questions becuase you have certainly confused me

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  32. In the first Alien movie: the ship Nostromo finds a signal on a nearby planet and goes to investigate. Well, they find an alien ship on that planet. Going back to the ending of AVP, since its the Prequal to Aliens, then did the Predator ship crash on that planet where they found the aliens in the first Alien movie?

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  33. Well, if you read the interview with Paul Anderson he’ll state that “The movie is designed to be a sequel to the predator movies and a prequel to the alien movies so that in no way does it kind of contradict or go against”

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  34. ok, gonna explain a bit about the AVP book I’ve had and started reading today….not the movie tho, just the Dark Horse novel, lol. Leader pred is training adolescent teenage preds….well, they have a queen in the ship and are gonna set some eggs on planet Ryushi…its odd and its so stupid at the same time at what transpires after the preds had sent some autonomous machine to lay out the eggs on the planet so its all ready when they arrive…well…uh, a biological research from the ‘soft meat’ colony was lied to about where to find these ‘spiders’ and ironically, he finds the preds and their ship and they JUST got outta the ship. So…they see him, the young preds from afar roar and charge towards him….ok, the man freaks out, gets on the hover cycle and flies THROUGH them! OMG! One pred grabs on but he runs the craft into a a rocky tall surface KILLING him…preds are shooting their ‘burners’ at him, one destroys the steering mechanizm and he CRASHES at full speed into the pred ship, killing one or two preds, rendering the ship unflyable…and the leader is knocked away from the huge explosion and is near death…so now, the alpha-male takes assumes command after delivering a blast from the ‘burner’ to a defying pred….they now seek revenge on the humans….its SOOOOO bizarre, and they think the guy was planning on attacking them and stuff…he was just scaried stupid basically, lol.

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  35. any julie, I don’t know how to go to a private chat, with yahoo messenger, i’m messing with it, and as for as a prequel or sequel, I never knew it was supposed to be either, I like to think of it as a new series, it keeps it simpler for me

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  36. Me too! That’s why I was asking you all of those questions earlier because I was getting confused on the sequal and the prequal part…

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  37. AaaaaaaaaaHAAA!! I think i got it, I may have to sign in through the dsl thing, then activate the yahoo thing, then I could do the yahoo instant messanger thing I think, does that work?

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  38. um okay, your comment appeared before another comment which meant that you responded to a comment before I asked it, according to the order in which the messages appeared

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  39. Here is something interesting to think about, check this out, in predator 2 there is a scene where the predator has to breath oxegyn through his own mask, and not the earth oxegyn but it doesn’t happen in the first one, its weired, its almost like in predator 2, the predator sudenly can’t breath our oxegyn without his mask on, but he can in the other films

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  40. BTW, how did the netgun work on the alien??? It was revealed in the scene where he killed the black dude, but hte net had drillbits on it that tightened….the netgun was used on the alien in mid-air…another inconsistancy? because unless it drillied into the alien itself, it cant tighten.

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  41. I?€™ve seen both the Alien and Predator series of movies. Aliens Vs Predator stands up as well as Alien 3 and the equally lame Predator 2. That being said, I liked all of the movies, they?€™re entertainment not serious cinema. I was hoping for more from Aliens Vs Predator, but the PG-13 restriction and the lack of a good director kind of put the kiss of death on that.

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  42. A few interesting points., The original working title of the 1st Alien movie was ?€?THEY BITE?€? a line that was used in Aliens vs Predator when the penguin showed up. Lance Henrickson (sp) shows up to show us where the Weyland company came from. However due to his death and the unliklikely event that the girl would report back makes it just more one of those coincidences than a reason for the Weyland company be looking for aliens. As far a a time line would go, Aliens V Predator happens a long time before Alien ( perhaps 100s of years) and most likely after the 1st Predator movie, perhaps before the second..

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  43. I do not think the Alien found in the original movie was on a predator ship. The ship was infested with Aline Eggs either because an alien had some how infected the ship, or was transporting them and one got loose. It?€™s not explained.. Plus the ship looked nothing like a predator ship. In one of the Darkhorse comics a woman on a colony that was over run with Aliens followed by Predators hunting them was also taken in by the predators because of her killing an alien. While the Predators are shown and established as hunters not much is ever said that they are warriors. I guess it would follow.

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  44. OK, just to clarify on a few of these comments. If I remember correctly the net engulfs the alien in mid air and begins to tighten when it hits the floor. Too schools of thought here, the net is not drilling into the wall but tightening into the weighted tips; or the tips begin drilling into the first hard surface they contact, in the aliens case, the floor (run-on I know). I agree the relationship between the Predator and Lex was way off, this would be like me hunting lions and antelope and befriending an antelope because I saw it kill a lion. I also had a real problem with the suicide bomb not being grafted to the predator like it has been referenced in other material. As the timeline goes Predator and its sequel both take place before AVP. Predator two was released in 1990 and set slightly in the future in 1997, something I wish they would have done with AVP. Setting the movie slightly in the future allows for believabilty in things like why haven’t I heard of Charles Bishop Weyland the tycoon without being so far in the future to expect major technological advances by us. The present day setting of the AVP movie puts us roughly 150 from Alien. One last note, why all the moaning about the non R rating? The original Alien movie was R rated almost entirely because it was scary. Think really hard here… besides ashes android blood and the chestbursting scene, what major gore was actually in that movie. The scariest scene in the first movie is when Tom Skerrit’s characters flashlight show you the alien for just a split second and then all goes black and you know he is dead. All that said I did enjoy the movie but Paul W S Anderson in his classic fashion has tried to cram too much movie into a two hour time slot. I agree with whoever said the people should have died quickly and let the aliens and preds go at it.

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  45. Okay, i know I am behind on this but I would also like to comment on #33. I am not sure when the Alien action figures came into play but the idea of the alien parasite taking some of the qualities of the host was solidified in alien 3. The hose was the dog and the alien in alien 3 moved decidedly differently than the ones in the first two movies and the body color was even slightly different. The Aliens on LV426 looked the same in both movies because they had the same host both times… humans. We never saw an alien until the facehuggers implanted into a human host. That being said there has been some suggestion that the queen and the eggs/face huggers are the only stages of the Alien species that remain unchanged.

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  46. “Whoever wins, we lose” makes a lot of sense, actually. It looks like some people forgot that these dumb humans were lured out there to be living hatcheries. The Predators were raising homegrown Aliens, and using human flesh for the process. We’re just cattle as far as they’re concerned. Sure, the Predators have honor, and may even occasionally befriend a human pet, but we’re insignificant in the grand scheme of things.

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  47. Jonathan: True, that’s one way to put it. But the underlying theme of the film kept going back to, “The enemy of my enemy is my friend,” whereas the “Whoever wins” line sounds like the studio trying anything they can to get us in to see the film.

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  48. I seen every alien movie and every predator movie and alien vs p was good there are many different kind of aliens and predators just like at the end of avp when it showed alot of different predators and also like predator 2 it also showed different ones. Aliens they are alot meanier than the predators thats why the aliens took out alot of predators because they are no match and I found out they are making more alien movies as we speak take care everyone. HAVE A NICE DAY!!!

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  49. Ok, this is a question for comment #24. How do you know that the acid oxodizes? And don’t you see in the past Alien movies when the alien dies and their acid splatter on the walls and it goes through the wall?

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  50. Hell – it should have been x-rated and had the black chick get it on with her new found alien lover/warrior. It would have been the best scene in the damn movie!

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  51. the movie was alright. should of had more blood and guts like the older aliens and predator movies. is there gonna be a aliens vs. predator part 2? does anybody know

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  52. whats with the predator’s shoulder cannon? cuz in the other predator movies didn’t it kind of fizz and stuff when it hit someone? cuz in AVP when it shot it was a cool globe kinda thing that vaporized the aliens.

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  53. also if the alien queen made new aliens every 100 years why didn’t the other aliens free the queen? cuz finaly in AVP the queen is freed by the other aliens. were rthe other aliens just stupid or sumthing?

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  54. I thought this movie was an absolute bucket of shit, As an avid fan of both Series I was extremely dissapointed with this movie. Entertaining in parts yes, however that was overshadowed by the fact it contained only B grade ( at best) actors, a ridiculous plot, lack of suspense, fighting scences and that stupid “Girl Power” theme (give it a rest already). This movie might have been saved if there was a kick ass team of meat heads to at least stand a chance against both species. Ok I’ll get off my soapbox now… but I will say it again What a piece of Shit! if I were a director/producer/actor I would be embaressed to put my name to this Crapola

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  55. Yea I agree with Pranky on that.. such a damn shame! There should have been way more fighting! should have been an 18… As for the story.. it doesnt quite tie in with the earlier Pred movies… AVP states the preds come every 100 years! no they dont! one fought commandos and Arnie in 87 and one came to LA in 91! And as for Weyland being the original Bishop.. I thought the original bishop was at the end of Alien3?? Anyways Anyways they screwed this film up so badly its almost they WANT critisism!

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  56. @ Luke
    At the end of Alien 3 Bishop tries to trick Ripley by saying he is the original Bishop. But when the prison guard (can’t think of his name) hits Bishop over the head he shouts “F*cking android!”

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  57. wow ya i agree with TreeFrog awesome blog ,i read all n learnt a lot,
    😛
    abt the movie it wasnt that bad ,the point is it could have been better,just saw the movie again n was just wondering abt the alien kinda thing that comes out of the predator,ppl also reffered as predalien,they left space 4 sequel……hope the next ones better ….gee they do make nice teasers,better than the movie.

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