2012 Movie #21 - Aliens (1986)
Last night I watched ALIENS for the first time, even though I was convinced I had already seen the film as a kid.
"How is this possible?" you ask.
When I was a child, I wasn’t allowed to watch R-rated movies. I didn’t see my first R-rated movie until I was well into my mid-teens. But as a result of this ban, I used to do something very strange. I would see posters for R-rated films in the video store or movie theater, and then I would have dreams or day-dreams about what the movie was about. I would have an imaginary version of the movie in my head based on a poster or whatever friends told me about the film. This happened with a lot of horror films like A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET and FRIDAY THE 13TH. And apparently it happened with ALIENS.
The side effect of this is that as I grew older I would forget that I hadn’t actually seen the film. And the imaginary dream version of the film would become the real film in my mind. So every few years I have this experience where I watch an R-rated film for the first time that I’m convinced that I saw as a child (even though when I think about it logically, I realize there is no possible way I saw the film). This happened with A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET, and I was hugely disappointed when I finally saw the real movie because my memories of the dream version were much scarier.
However, after the first scene of ALIENS, I realized that my dream version of the film was vastly inferior to James Cameron’s masterpiece. I suspect I’m going to rewatch ALIENS a few times this year, so I won’t write too much in this first blog entry. But I will say this. ALIENS is without a doubt one of the best action films I have ever seen.
What I’ll take away: I want more movies to look like ALIENS.