The African Queen

US (1951): War/Romance/Adventure
105 min, No rating, Color, Available on videocassette and laserdisc

An inspired piece of casting brought Humphrey Bogart and Katharine Hepburn together. This is a comedy, a love story, and a tale of adventure, and it is one of the most charming and entertaining movies ever made. The director, John Huston, has written that the comedy was not present either in the novel by C.S. Forester or in the original screenplay by James Agee, John Collier, and himself, but that it grew out of the relationship of Hepburn and Bogart, who were just naturally funny when they worked together. Hepburn has revealed that the picture wasn't going well until Huston came up with the inspiration that she should think of Rosie as Mrs. Roosevelt. After that, Bogart and Hepburn played together with an ease and humor that makes their love affair-the mating of a forbidding, ironclad spinster and a tough, gin-soaked riverboat captain-seem not only inevitable, but perfect. The story, set in central Africa in 1914, is so convincingly acted that you may feel a bit jarred at the end; after the lovers have brought the boat, the African Queen, over dangerous rapids to torpedo a German battleship, Huston seems to stop taking the movie seriously. With Robert Morley as Hepburn's missionary brother, and Peter Bull. Cinematography by Jack Cardiff. Bogart's performance took the Academy Award for Best Actor. (Peter Viertel, who worked on the dialogue while the company was on location in Africa, wrote White Hunter, Black Heart-one of the best of all moviemaking novels-about his experiences with Huston.) Produced by Sam Spiegel, for United Artists.

After Hours

US (1985): Comedy
97 min, Rated R, Color, Available on videocassette and laserdisc

Martin Scorsese directed, and his work here is lively and companionable; the camera scoots around, making jokes-or, at least, near-jokes. But this skittish paranoid fantasy is just a classroom exercise of a movie: elegant, crisp, and flashy, with perky zooms and cute little dissolves. Scorsese uses his skills (and even his personality) like a hired hand, making a vacuous, polished piece of consumer goods-all surface. Griffin Dunne plays a young word-processor operator in midtown New York, who goes down to SoHo for a date and finds himself trapped in a nightmare world, where he has to contend with one flaky, threatening woman after another: Rosanna Arquette, Linda Fiorentino, Teri Garr, Catherine O'Hara, and Verna Bloom. The cast includes John Heard, who gives the movie its only rooted moments, and Cheech and Chong, Dick Miller, and Bronson Pinchot. Script by Joseph Minion; cinematography by Michael Ballhaus. Released by Warners.
For a more extended discussion, see Pauline Kael's book Hooked.

After the Fox

Italy-UK (1966): Comedy
103 min, No rating, Color, Available on videocassette

An international collaboration that turned into a box-office calamity, yet, for a messy satirical farce, this picture has a surprising number of funny moments. Neil Simon and Cesare Zavattini wrote the screenplay about a crook who pretends to be a moviemaker. Vittorio De Sica directed, and the cast includes Peter Sellers as the crook, his then-wife, Britt Ekland, playing his sister, Martin Balsam, Victor Mature (who parodies himself and earns the biggest laughs), Paolo Stoppa, Akim Tamiroff, and De Sica himself. The score is by Burt Bacharach.

After the Thin Man

US (1936): Mystery/Comedy
113 min, No rating, Black & White, Available on videocassette and laserdisc

This second of the six films that make up the Thin Man Series, starring William Powell and Myrna Loy as Nick and Nora Charles, doesn't live up to the first. It isn't particularly entertaining; it's just busy. Elissa Landi (who has peculiarly mushy, ladylike diction) is in distress because she has lost her husband (Alan Marshal) to Penny Singleton. There are a couple of murders, and Asta's mate has puppies. The cast includes James Stewart, Joseph Calleia, Sam Levene, and Jessie Ralph. Like the first film, this one was directed by W.S. Van Dyke, from a screenplay by Albert Hackett and Frances Goodrich. MGM.

Against All Odds

US (1984): Crime
128 min, Rated R, Color, Available on videocassette and laserdisc

Suggested by the 1947 Jacques Tourneur suspense film OUT OF THE PAST, this revved-up picture is of the "everybody uses everybody" genre, set in swank surroundings and outfitted with electronic music to make you twitch. With a plot that borrows from CHINATOWN and NORTH DALLAS FORTY, it has so many convoluted double crosses that each time you're told what was "really" going on behind the scene you just witnessed you care less. Rachel Ward is the woman who steals and kills, lies all the time, and makes love alternately to Jeff Bridges, a pro football player, and to James (The Snake) Woods, a gamblin' man. It turns out that she's just confused, from having grown up in a nest of vipers, with a real-estate-tycoon mother (played with considerable cool by Jane Greer) and a smoothly villainous stepfather (a hambone special by Richard Widmark). The scenes aren't shaped to get anywhere, so even though the movie hops about LA and Mexico, the effect is static, and some sequences-such as the lovemaking set in the ancient Mayan steam house at Chich�n Itz�-should earn their place in the annals of camp. With Dorian Harewood, Saul Rubinek, Alex Karras, and Swoosie Kurtz, who has only two or three minutes onscreen (as a lawyer's secretary) but gets a relationship going with the audience; she's the only member of the cast who doesn't seem to have been pulped. Directed by Taylor Hackford, from a script by Eric Hughes. Columbia.
For a more extended discussion, see Pauline Kael's book State of the Art.


US (1979): Romance
98 min, Rated PG, Color, Available on videocassette

Vanessa Redgrave has a luminously loony quality as the distraught heroine of this fictional romantic mystery, which purports to be about the 11 days in 1926 when Agatha Christie, whose husband wanted a divorce so he could marry his mistress, took off for a Yorkshire spa, where she used the mistress's name. Dustin Hoffman is furiously theatrical in the role of a preening star journalist from America who trails Agatha to the spa and falls in love with her. There is a blissful romantic moment when the goddess-tall, swan-necked Agatha responds to the journalist's (previously denied) request for a kiss by coiling over and down to reach him. The movie has a general air of knowingness, and some of the incidental dialogue is clever, though it doesn't seem to have a story-with its lulling tempo and languid elegance, it seems to be from a musing. The talent of the director, Michael Apted, is for the tactile, the plangent, the indefinite; when the action dawdles, he lets the cinematographer, Vittorio Storaro, take over. The rooms look smoked, and everything is in soft movement; this is the rare movie that is too fluid. Yet there's a gentle pull to it, and Redgrave endows Agatha Christie with the oddness of genius. With Timothy Dalton, who gives a strong, funny performance as the husband exhausted by his wife's high-powered sensitivity, and the curly-mouthed Helen Morse as the friendly woman Agatha meets at the spa, and Celia Gregory, Carolyn Pickles, Tony Britton, Timothy West, and Alan Badel. The script is credited to Kathleen Tynan, who initiated the project, and Arthur Hopcraft; additional writers were also involved. The production designer was Shirley Russell. A First Artists Production, for Warners.
For a more extended discussion, see Pauline Kael's book When the Lights Go Down.

The Agony and the Ecstasy

US (1965): Biography
140 min, No rating, Color, Available on videocassette and laserdisc

There is a dreadful discrepancy between Michelangelo's works and the words put in the mouth of Charlton Heston, who represents him here, and this picture-which is mostly about a prolonged wrangle between the sculptor and Pope Julius II (Rex Harrison), who keeps sweeping into the Sistine Chapel and barking, "When will you make an end of it?"-isn't believable for an instant. It was a terrible fiasco for all concerned-the financiers as well as the artists. Carol Reed directed, from Philip Dunne's lugubrious adaptation of the massive Irving Stone best-seller. With Diane Cilento and Harry Andrews. Released by 20th Century-Fox.

Ah, Wilderness

US (1935): Comedy
101 min, No rating, Black & White, Available on videocassette

This piece of ordinary-family-life Americana, centering on the sweet love pangs of adolescence, is so remote from Eugene O'Neill's life and his other work that it's something of a freak. O'Neill said that the play came to him at night, as a dream, but it seems to be a dream based on Booth Tarkington's world. Eric Linden (who always looks as if he's just about to cry) plays the mooning high-school-valedictorian hero in the era of choking starched collars; that cloying old fraud Lionel Barrymore is his father; Wallace Beery is his tippling uncle; Mickey Rooney is his little brother; and Aline MacMahon and Spring Byington wear neat shirtwaists and make themselves useful about the house. If it sounds Andy Hardyish, it is, and more than a little; in 1948, MGM tried to capitalize on the resemblance by starring Rooney in a musical version of the play, called SUMMER HOLIDAY. The musical turned out to be an abomination, but this early version, directed by Clarence Brown, while not a world-shaker, and rather dim as entertainment, has at last a nice, quiet, comic sense of period. With Cecilia Parker, Charley Grapewin, Frank Albertson, Bonita Granville, and Eddie Nugent. The adaptation is by Albert Hackett and Frances Goodrich. MGM

Air Force

US (1943): War
124 min, No rating, Black & White, Available on videocassette

One of the "contribution-to-the-war-effort" specials-the biography of a Flying Fortress, a Boeing B-17 nicknamed Mary Ann, that heads out into the Pacific on the eve of Pearl Harbor and goes on to Wake Island and then takes part in the Coral Sea battle and, at the last, is about to participate in the raid on Tokyo. The film is one crisis after another, and the director, Howard Hawks, stages the air battles handsomely, but for the rest it helps if you're interested in the factors involved in getting a bomber somewhere and back. This is one of the most impersonal of the Hawks films; it feels manufactured rather than made. The script by Dudley Nichols, with dialogue by William Faulkner, provided what is meant to be a microcosm of democracy in motion-a melting-pot crew; on board are John Garfield as aerial gunner Winocki, George Tobias as assistant crew chief Weinberg, Gig Young as co-pilot Williams, John Ridgely as Captain Quincannon, Arthur Kennedy as bombardier McMartins, Harry Carey as crew chief White, Charles Drake as the navigator, and James Brown as Rader, who replaces the pilot. Stereotypes all, though acted with professional conviction. The cast includes Edward S. Brophy, Faye Emerson, Dorothy Peterson, Addison Richards, Ann Doran, Stanley Ridges, Willard Robertson, and Moroni Olsen. Cinematography by James Wong Howe. Warners.


US (1980): Comedy
86 min, Rated PG, Color, Available on videocassette and laserdisc

If you were a teenager in the late 50s and read the movie lampoons in Mad and watched a lot of TV series shows and a lot of cheapie old movies on television and remembered parts of all of them, jumbled together into one dumb movie-that's AIRPLANE! It's compiled like a jokebook. Except for a genuinely funny sequence that parodies SATURDAY NIGHT FEVER, it has the kind of pacing that goes with a laughtrack. But the three writer-directors (Jim Abrahams and David and Jerry Zucker) keep the gags coming pop pop pop, and the picture is over blessedly fast. With Julie Hagerty and Robert Hays as the young lovers, and Leslie Nielsen, Peter Graves, Robert Stack, Lloyd Bridges, and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar; celebrities such as Howard Jarvis, Maureen McGovern, Jimmie Walker, and Ethel Merman turn up in bits. Based on the 1957 movie ZERO HOUR. Paramount.
For a more extended discussion, see Pauline Kael's book Taking It All In.


US (1970): Disaster
137 min, Rated G, Color, Available on videocassette and laserdisc

Arthur Hailey, the author of the novel on which it's based, publicly explained his methods of work-the number of hours of research per character, the amount of time spent on plotting, etc. The result was the No. 1 best-seller-it sold over 4 million copies-and was bought by the producer Ross Hunter, who assembled a cast and crew with 23 Oscars among them. The baldness of all this might lull you into imagining that the result would be slick fun, but there's no electricity in it, no smart talk, no flair. Written and directed by George Seaton, it's bland entertainment of the old school: every stereotyped action is followed by a stereotyped reaction-clich�s commenting on clich�s. The actors play such roles as responsible, harried executive (Burt Lancaster), understanding mistress (Jean Seberg), spoiled, selfish wife (Dana Wynter), man who needs to care for someone (Dean Martin), and the someone (Jacqueline Bisset), with Helen Hayes doing her lovable-old-pixie act. The only performer who suggests a human being is Maureen Stapleton; she manages to bring some intensity out of herself-it certainly isn't in the lines. The picture was a huge success. The cast includes Barry Nelson, George Kennedy, Lloyd Nolan, Barbara Hale, and Jessie Royce Landis. Universal.

Airport 1975

US (1974): Disaster
106 min, Rated PG, Color, Available on videocassette and laserdisc

Processed schlock. This could only have been designed as a TV movie and then blown up to cheapie-epic proportions. One can have a fairly good time laughing at it, but it doesn't sit too well as a joke, because the people on the screen are being humiliated. Jack Smight directed, fumblingly; Karen Black and Charlton Heston do the most emoting. The cast includes George Kennedy, Myrna Loy, Linda Blair, Helen Reddy, Gloria Swanson, Dana Andrews, and Sid Caesar. Universal.
For a more extended discussion, see Pauline Kael's book Reeling.

Alex and the Gypsy

US (1976): Drama
99 min, Rated PG, Color

Off the beaten track, but that's just about the only thing you can give it points for. Jack Lemmon is Alex, a cynical, loquacious bailbondsman, whose character is taken from the Stanley Elkin short novel The Bailbondsman, but the movie involves him with a gypsy (Genevi�ve Bujold) invented by the screenwriter, Lawrence B. Marcus. Lemmon is always up, and works desperately hard. And so Bujold, who's meant to be the vibrant, tempestuous one, has to fight him for every bit of audience attention, and what should be a love story is a shouting match-ersatz D. H. Lawrence and ersatz Billy Wilder. Directed by John Korty; cinematography by Bill Butler. With James Woods, Robert Emhardt, and Gino Ardito. Produced by Richard Shepherd; released by 20th Century-Fox.
For a more extended discussion, see Pauline Kael's book When the Lights Go Down.

Alex in Wonderland

US (1970): Comedy
109 min, Rated R, Color, Available on videocassette

Paul Mazursky's account of a movie director (Donald Sutherland), who has just made his first picture (Mazursky had just made his first, BOB & CAROL & TED & ALICE), fretting and fantasizing over his next project. Alex's fantasy life has no intensity-it's a series of emotionally antiseptic reveries, staged like the big production numbers in a musical. And the film is so loose that one's attention wanders. (It was a total commercial failure.) But Mazursky and his co-writer, Larry Tucker, have an affectionate, ambivalent way of observing the contradictions in how people live-especially in the domestic scenes of Alex and his wife (Ellen Burstyn) and their two daughters, and in the chaotic ambiance of the late-60s Hollywood, where bearded executives wear Indian headbands and consider themselves anti-Establishment. The film has very funny moments, and at least one satiric triumph: a long revue skit in which Alex goes to lunch with a manic producer (played by Mazursky). Sutherland isn't bad-he has a soft-spoken way with dialogue and he's wonderful when he leans back in fatuous satisfaction as Jeanne Moreau (who appears briefly as herself) sings to him, though he's so cool he drifts away while you're watching him. With Federico Fellini (as himself), Meg Mazursky, Glenna Sergent, and Viola Spolin. Cinematography by Laszlo Kovacs. Produced by Tucker, for MGM.
For a more extended discussion, see Pauline Kael's book Deeper into Movies.

Alexander Nevsky

Russia (1938): War/Historical
107 min, No rating, Black & White, Available on videocassette and laserdisc

Sergei Eisenstein's ponderously surging epic has a famous score by Prokofiev and a stunning battle on ice. When it's great it's very great, but there are long deadly stretches (which isn't the case with Eisenstein's other films). The plot has something to do with the 13th-century invasion of Russia by German knights; needless to say, the Russians drive the invaders out. The propaganda isn't Communist but nationalist: the medieval story was used to warn Hitler to stay out. Photographed (as were all Eisenstein's feature films) by Edouard Tiss�; with Nikolai Cherkassov as Prince Nevsky. In Russian.

Alexander's Ragtime Band

US (1938): Musical
105 min, No rating, Black & White, Available on videocassette

The twenty Irving Berlin songs are reason enough for seeing the film, but you have to be prepared for the persistent, mosquito-like irritation of the plot-from 1911 to 1939 two songwriters (Tyrone Power and Don Ameche) are rivals for the affections of Alice Faye, who smiles her overripe, slow smile. Her mellow voice is wonderful on the title song and you want to cheer her rendition of "When That Midnight Choo-Choo Leaves for Alabam'," but you may get to shuddering when she ponders the First World War (exhibited to us in three seconds of newsreel shots) and murmurs, "It was all so futile, wasn't it?" This big, lavish 20th Century-Fox musical, directed by Henry King, has Ethel Merman, Jack Haley, Dixie Dunbar, Chick Chandler, Douglas Fowley, John Carradine, Helen Westley, Ruth Terry, Wally Vernon, and Jean Hersholt. Sets by Boris Leven; dances staged by Seymour Felix; the writers include Kathryn Scola, Lamar Trotti, Richard Sherman, and Irving Berlin.


UK (1966): Drama
114 min, No rating, Color, Available on videocassette

Michael Caine gives us Alfie, the swaggering Cockney Don Juan, as he sees himself. Alfie doesn't know his own limitations; that's what makes it possible for him to charm so many "birds." Bill Naughton adapted his own material (it had already been a radio play, a stage play, and a novel-in that order) for this British picture, directed by Lewis Gilbert. It's still basically oral-Alfie addresses us, narrating his own story, and his sexual encounters are used as illustrations of his character. But Caine brings out the gusto in Naughton's dialogue and despite the obvious weaknesses in the film (the gratuitous "cinematic" barroom brawl, the clumsy witnessing of the christening, the symbolism of the dog), he keeps the viewer absorbed in Alfie, the cold-hearted sexual hotshot, and his self-exculpatory line of reasoning. The supporting performers, who appear in a series of sketches and have highly individualized roles, include Julia Foster, Jane Asher, Vivien Merchant, Millicent Martin, Eleanor Bron, Shirley Anne Field, Shelley Winters, Denholm Elliott, Alfie Bass, Graham Stark, Murray Melvin, and Sydney Tafler. The score is by Sonny Rollins.

Alfredo, Alfredo

Italy (1972): Comedy
98 min, Rated R, Color, Available on videocassette

Dubbed with a mellifluous Italian voice, Dustin Hoffman gives a warm and friendly performance as a shy young Italian bank clerk, and the novelty of seeing him without his own frightened, choked-up voice adds an extra dimension to this Pietro Germi comedy. Germi's method pits individuals-heaping collections of foibles-against the rigid Italian legal system, with its irrational laws governing marriage, divorce, and cohabitation. But the comic tone is a bit used; everything Germi does here he has done before, and better (especially in DIVORCE-ITALIAN STYLE). Stefania Sandrelli plays the flighty, extravagantly romantic girl Alfredo marries; his bride's exquisite features give her a look of mystery, but she's an imbecile sphinx, mysterious yet dumb as a cow. The early scenes of her imperiousness and her enslavement of the deliriously impressed Alfredo are high slapstick. But since this character's comedy is all based on the one gag of her insatiability, she becomes as wearying to us as to the exhausted Alfredo. After the first third, the picture sags under a load of uninspired, forced gaiety. It has some beautiful gags, though. Carla Gravina plays the modern independent working woman who liberates Alfredo. Written by Leo Benvenuti, Piero De Bernardi, Tullio Pinelli, and the director. In Italian.
For a more extended discussion, see Pauline Kael's book Reeling.


US (1938): Crime
95 min, No rating, Black & White, Available on videocassette

An entertaining piece of kitsch, featuring a torrid romance between Charles Boyer and Hedy Lamarr, making her American film d�but. Directed by John Cromwell, it's a remake of the infinitely superior French film, P�P� LE MOKO, directed by Julien Duvivier-and so close a remake that many of the original sequences are followed shot by shot. Yet this version is pure Hollywood, sacrificing everything to glamour, and the heavy makeup and studio lighting make it all seem so artificial one can get giggly. In the role that Jean Gabin made famous, Boyer (who may be an even greater actor than Gabin) is reduced to giving so many passionate, hot glances at the inhumanly beautiful Lamarr that he almost becomes a self-caricature. He plays P�p�, the French crook who is safe in the Casbah, where he lives like a lord, but who longs for Paris. And Lamarr, with her slurry German-English, plays a Parisienne visiting Algiers. Sigrid Gurie is the native girl in love with P�p�, Joseph Calleia slinks about corners as the suave detective, and Gene Lockhart is the rotten squealer. With Johnny Downs, Alan Hale. Cinematography by James Wong Howe; adaptation by John Howard Lawson, with additional dialogue by James M. Cain. (A 1948 remake, CASBAH, with Tony Martin as a singing P�p�, tried for-but missed-the heat and glamour.) A Walter Wanger Production; released by United Artists.

Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves

US (1944): Adventure
87 min, No rating, Color, Available on videocassette and laserdisc

Maria Montez and Jon Hall in a follow-up to ARABIAN NIGHTS, a picture of such dreamy fatuousness that Universal made a bundle out of it. This time, plump-cheeked, slit-eyed Turhan Bey is the camp treat. With Andy Devine and Fortunio Bonanova. Directed by Arthur Lubin.

Alice Adams

US (1935): Drama/Comedy
99 min, No rating, Black & White, Available on videocassette and laserdisc

Katharine Hepburn, with her young, beautiful angularity and her faintly absurd Bryn Mawr accent, is superbly cast as Booth Tarkington's eager, desperate, small-town social climber. Her Alice is one of the few authentic American movie heroines. George Stevens directed with such a fine sense of detail and milieu that the small-town nagging-family atmosphere is nerve-rackingly accurate and funny. Alice is cursed with a pushing mother (Ann Shoemaker), an infantile father (Fred Stone), and a vulgar brother (Frank Albertson). The picture is cursed only by a fake happy ending: Alice gets what the movie companies considered a proper Prince Charming for her-Fred MacMurray, as a wealthy young man. Even with this flaw, it's a classic, and Hepburn gives one of her two or three finest performances-rivalled, perhaps, only by her work in LITTLE WOMEN and LONG DAY'S JOURNEY INTO NIGHT. With Hattie McDaniel, Evelyn Venable, and Hedda Hopper as a rich bitch. (A 1923 silent version, with Florence Vidor, had a more realistic ending.) RKO.

Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore

US (1974): Drama/Comedy
113 min, Rated PG, Color, Available on videocassette and laserdisc

Ellen Burstyn stars in this Martin Scorsese comedy, from an original script by Robert Getchell, about a 35-year-old widow who sets out with her young son to make a new life. Full of funny malice and breakneck vitality, it's absorbing and intelligent even when the issues it raises get all fouled up. With Harvey Keitel, Kris Kristofferson, Valerie Curtin, Lelia Goldoni, Lane Bradbury, Diane Ladd, Jodie Foster, and, as the son, wire-drawn little Alfred Lutter, who has crack comedy timing. Warners.
For a more extended discussion, see Pauline Kael's book Reeling.

Alice in Wonderland

US (1933): Fantasy
77 min, No rating, Black & White

Charmless, wooden version, with Paramount's most famous stars barely recognizable-and then only by their voices, since they appear in huge false heads. And though it's fun to recognize them that way, those voices don't do much for the Lewis Carroll lines. The film was lavishly produced, with great care given to the sets and costumes and makeup, but the spirit is missing. Charlotte Henry plays Alice (with plucked eyebrows), Cary Grant is the Mock Turtle, Gary Cooper is the White Knight, Louise Fazenda is the White Queen, Richard Arlen is the Cheshire Cat, Ned Sparks is the Caterpillar, Jack Oakie is Tweedledum, and Alison Skipworth is the Duchess. Perhaps the best remembered, however, are W.C. Fields as Humpty Dumpty, Edna May Oliver as the Red Queen, Sterling Holloway as the Frog, and Baby LeRoy as the Joker. Norman McLeod directed; the text, by Joseph L. Mankiewicz and William Cameron Menzies, includes material from Through the Looking Glass.


US (1986): Science Fiction
137 min, Rated R, Color, Available on videocassette and laserdisc

An inflated sci-fi action-horror film, this sequel to Ridley Scott's 1979 ALIEN is more mechanical than the first film-more addicted to "advanced" weaponry and military hardware. The movie is really a combat picture set in the future, in space. The writer-director James Cameron pits a platoon of United States Marines (ethnically assorted, of course) against a family of extraterrestrial monsters-a queen and her slimy brood. He does it in an energetic, systematic, relentless way, with an action director's gusto, and a shortage of imagination. The imagery has a fair amount of graphic power, but there's too much claustrophobic blue-green dankness. As Warrant Officer Ripley, the only human survivor of the spaceship that voyaged forth in the earlier picture, Sigourney Weaver seems to take over by natural authority and her strength as an actress. She gives the movie a presence, and Cameron toys with the sex-role reversal by turning the final confrontation with the queen into the Battle of the Big Mamas. But at 2 hours and 17 minutes this is just a very big "Boo!" movie, with bum dialogue. With Michael Biehn, Paul Reiser, Lance Henriksen, Jenette Goldstein as Vasquez the bodybuilder, and Carrie Henn as the wraithlike little girl, Newt, who is out there in space to arouse Ripley's maternal instinct. Produced by Gale Anne Hurd, for 20thCentury-Fox.
For a more extended discussion, see Pauline Kael's book Hooked.

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