Alien 3 (1992)

alien3 poster 1992 movie
7.5 Overall Score
Story: 7/10
Acting: 8/10
Visuals: 8/10


Slow pace, a let down when compared to Alien and Aliens

Movie Info

Movie Name: Alien 3

Studio: Brandywine Productions

Genre(s): Sci-Fi/Fantasy/Action/Adventure/Horror

Release Date(s): May 22, 1992

MPAA Rating: R

alien 3 baby dog monster

It’s kind of like a scaly Lhasa Apso

Having survived the alien horde on LV-426, Ellen Ripley (Sigourney Weaver) wakes up the only survivor of a crash on the prison forging planet of Fiorina “Fury” 161.  Unfortunately something has come with Ripley to the desolate planet, and an alien has been birthed from a dog.  The alien is hunting the prisoners and with no weaponry, Ripley and the prisoners will have to outthink the monster desperately trying to kill them.

Directed by David Fincher, Alien 3 (stylized as Alien3) is a science-fiction horror movie.  Following Aliens in 1986, the film suffered multiple production problems, changes in staff, and a contentious battle between Fincher and the studio about the editing (Fincher later disowned the film).  The film received an Academy Award nomination for Best Visual Effects.

alien 3 ripley monster sigourney weaver

Hey, girl…what’s up?

Alldfd Alien was fantastic as a horror/sci-fi movie.  Aliens took the franchise in a completely different direction and made it an action-horror movie.  Alien 3 attempted to do something different, but failed for multiple reasons.  Years down the line, Alien 3 isn’t awful as a standalone movie, but as a franchise entry, it is a disappointment.

The story isn’t bad on its own, but Aliens was so big and bold…Alien 3 goes back to the more claustrophobic and low-tech feel of Alien.  It was also a bummer for the character of Ripley to have fought so hard to save Newt (her substitute child) and Hicks only to have them taken away as just a mere passing plot-point.  It was an insult to fans of the previous film.  The core story however of these people with nothing to lose fighting for their lives is interesting…and combined with the overarching “motherhood” themes of all the Alien films.

alien 3 trap charles s dutton sigourney weaver

“It’s a trap!”

Sigourney Weaver continues to prove that a female can hold down an action film.  While in the old horror and sci-fi films, there would be one woman as the damsel-in-distress, Ripley is the only character keeping things together here.  Ripley is a great, rounded character, and despite the weaknesses in the movie, I don’t feel that her character is really let down…this movie has her taking a stand in a way that is different than Alien or Aliens.  She has a decent supporting cast with Charles S. Dutton, Charles Dance, Pete Postlethwaite, Paul McGann, and Brian Glover…plus, you get the return of Lance Henriksen (twice).

alien 3 cgi creature trap

Ok…this didn’t hold up well…

The special effects for the movie are both very good and also poorly aged at points.  The goal was to demonstrate that aliens that gestate in different animals would look different and the alien is supposed to be more doglike.  The puppet versions of the alien are good, but some of the computer generated versions of the alien haven’t aged as well with advances in technology.

Alien 3 is a bit messy, but I don’t think it deserves the hate it.  The story does some nice work with basic themes of the franchise and it sets up a lot of the Weyland-Yutani Corporation which becomes an even bigger theme in following films.  Alien 3 deserves some reprieve, but it is by no means a good movie.  Alien 3 was followed by Alien:  Resurrection in 1997.

Related Links:

Alien (1979)

Aliens (1986)

Alien:  Resurrection (1997)

Prometheus (2012)

Alien:  Covenant (2017)

Aliens vs. Predator (2004)

Aliens vs. Predator:  Requiem (2007)

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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