Alien - The rebirth

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German title Alien - The rebirth
Original title Alien: Resurrection
Alien 4.svg
Country of production United States
original language English
Publishing year 1997
length Theatrical version: 104 minutes
Extended version : 111 minutes
Age rating FSK 16
Director Jean-Pierre Jeunet
script Joss Whedon
production Bill Badalato ,
Gordon Carroll ,
David Giler ,
Walter Hill
music John Frizzell
camera Darius Khondji
cut Hervé Schneid

←  Predecessor
Alien 3

Successor  →
Prometheus - Dark Signs

Alien - Die Wiedergeburt (original title Alien: Resurrection ) is an American science fiction film by the director Jean-Pierre Jeunet from 1997 . It's the fourth installment in the Alien film series . As in the three predecessors, Sigourney Weaver plays the leading role. The film opened in German cinemas on November 27, 1997. The German dubbing was done by the dubbing company FFS Film- & Fernseh-Synchron GmbH, Berlin, and Joachim Kunzendorf was responsible for the dialogue book and the dialogue direction.


Two hundred years after her death, Ellen Ripley is brought back to life by unscrupulous military scientists aboard the Terran space cruiser USM Auriga : In a series of tests, the genes of her remains are cloned until she and the alien queen are found in her body to keep viable. Contrary to expectations, she survived the procedure in which the queen is surgically removed from the body. Her altered genes give her superior abilities. The scientists want to breed the aliens (also known as "Xenomorph") for military use. To do this, they need host bodies that are supplied to them by space pirates in the form of kidnapped colonists. Soon the first aliens hatch and are housed in supposedly escape-proof cages.

However, the creatures manage to escape by killing one of their own. Their strongly corrosive blood destroys the cage and paves the way for the remaining aliens to freedom. Those who have now escaped decimate scientists and marines . As the situation worsens, the cloned Ripley allies itself with the space pirates still on board, including the suspicious Call , who was ordered to kill Ripley before the queen is removed. Together they look for a way to leave the doomed Auriga . Due to the emergency situation, the ship has automatically set course for earth and threatens to bring the aliens to mankind's home planet. Call therefore suggests blowing up the Auriga and fleeing with the pirates' spaceship that has landed in a hangar . On the way there, the group is gradually decimated by attacks by the aliens.

When the refugees get caught in a trap by the aliens and take refuge in a shaft, Dr. Wren, the ship's last scientist, shot dead. When Call opens the door to the shaft from the outside a short time later to allow the group to escape, it turns out that it is actually an Auton , an Android developed by robots . Ripley asks Call to log into the ship's central computer in order to blow up the ship before it reaches Earth. Call finds out that the ship's remaining energy is no longer sufficient to detonate it. Ripley therefore lets Call put the ship on a collision course with Earth so that it burns up when it collides with the atmosphere . Call then activates the space pirates' ship via the network and opens all doors there to enable the group to escape from the Auriga .

Ripley ends up in the queen's brood room and learns that she has also mutated through the cloning and now has a uterus. The queen gives birth to a novel human-alien creature. However, the born hybrid thinks Ripley is his mother and kills the queen. Meanwhile, Ripley is no longer sure which species she belongs to, because on the one hand she has the strength and senses of an alien, on the other hand she is in a human body. She shows sympathy for her alien "relatives". Ultimately, however, Ripley decides to flee and crash the hybrid creature along with the Auriga in order to kill it.

Shortly before the pirates' ship leaves the Auriga , Call sees on a monitor that Ripley is on the way to the hangar. Call opens the hatch for her and Ripley can jump into the pirate ship at the last minute. Ripley pushes the button to close the hatch, but it doesn't close completely. Because Ripley is the only one left who can steer the ship, Call tries to close the hatch. In doing so, she discovers the hybrid creature that has also come on board through the hatch. The hybrid understands the situation and closes the hatch. Call is able to get to safety, but then has to watch as one of the surviving Marines who wanted to check on her is killed by the hybrid creature. When Call comes under the control of the hybrid, she is saved by Ripley. Ripley hurls blood against an outside window of the ship, which etches a small hole in the glass . While Ripley and Call can hold on, the hybrid creature is pushed through the small hole into space by the resulting suction, which completely destroys its body.

Shortly after the Auriga collided with the earth's atmosphere and burned up in an atomic explosion, the survivors Ripley, Call, Vriess and Johner can safely reach earth with the ship of the space pirates.


The first rumors about a continuation of the Alien series emerged directly after the third part of the saga, which was received ambiguously by audience and critics. At the 1993 World Science Fiction Convention in San Francisco there was the first official confirmation from 20th Century Fox that another sequel to the Alien series was in the early stages of development, even though Alien 3 flopped at the box office. Walter Hill and David Giler of Brandywine Productions were very impressed by Joss Whedon's ideas to develop the alien metamorphosis and gave him the development of the script . The desire often expressed by fans to bring the aliens to Earth was quickly rejected by Whedon, as such a film would have exceeded any available budget. The new film was supposed to revive the style of the first two parts and be a mixture of claustrophobic horror and permanent action.

A problem for the producers was Sigourney Weaver's initial refusal to play in the fourth part. A year and a half after Whedon had written the script and his 30-page treatment was available without Ripley, the studio backed down: Without Ripley, there would be no new part. After reviewing the high-quality draft script, Weaver finally agreed to work on the assumption that Alien 4 would be a serious continuation of the story. Whedon's new script was based on the cloning of Ripley's genes, which became a central theme of the whole film and also took the chance to give Ripley a completely new character. Weaver finally accepted this challenge and signed part four of the contract. The casting of Winona Ryder, a big fan of the first three parts, went smoothly. She accepted before she even had any information about her role.

Finding a suitable director was more difficult. Names like Geoff Murphy , Steven Soderbergh , Mick Garris , Wes Craven , David Cronenberg , John Carpenter and George A. Romero were mentioned . However, Cronenberg refused. Since they were looking for a director with his own visual style, the name Jean-Pierre Jeunet came into play, although it was known that he was not interested in directing an American film. The collaboration finally came about because Jeunet was not only a fan of the first three Alien parts, but also showed great interest in working with the fluent French-speaking Sigourney Weaver and Winona Ryder.



The film premiered on 26 November 1997 in the United States premiere and came a day later in the German cinemas. With a budget of 75 million US dollars and a worldwide box office of about 161 million US dollars, he was so until then most financially successful film of the Alien series.


Alien - The rebirth met with a divided echo. The average rating of over 20 film reviews was 63%. Some critics found the sequel to be uninspired and redundant, while others saw it as a partial return to the critically acclaimed 1979 first part.

"The equipment, cast and plot structure combine in an appealing way to create a science fiction stage magic of the better variety that benefits equally from European auteur cinema and from American perfection."

“The film captivates [...] not only with its competent staging, the joke that its predecessor missed so miserably, and a remarkable ensemble of actors - the interiors (instead of the claustrophobic rooms of its predecessors, Jeunet mostly relies on large, stretched halls for actor interaction guttun) are perhaps the most lovingly and optically beautifully crafted of the series. In this respect, Alien Resurrection is as much Weaver's film as that of the director: Here a happy combination of traditional material and an original, personal style is found. "

- Christoph Huber :

“The devil is in the details. As spectacular as the effects, scope and dynamics help the 'alien' myth to resurrection, all of the secondary characters were neglected. That the show belongs to Ripley and the aliens is justified even without the feisty co-producer Sigourney Weaver. But did the rest of the gang have to curdle to the cannon fodder? The viewer does not care how many of the competing space pirates are killed because they are too weakly integrated to generate real sympathy. This is the most ungrateful for Winona Ryder, who as a human android scurries past all drama and whose celebrity far exceeds her part. May she too be rehabilitated in the future. Because to be continued. Absolutely."

- Roland Huschke in the film magazine Cinema

Screenwriter Joss Whedon, however, was dissatisfied with the finished film. In 2005, when asked what distinguishes the film from its original script, he replied that it was simply “horribly implemented” and that the film was virtually “invisible”.

Special edition

The Aliens Quadrilogy DVD box released in 2003 contains an alternative version of Alien - The Rebirth , which was also released as a special edition a year later. It is a good seven minutes longer and at the end shows the earth devastated. Ripley and Call sit on the edge of ruined Paris.

The special edition contains a comment by director Jeunet , who prefers the normal theatrical version.

Awards (selection)

  • In 1997 the film received the Bogey Award .
  • In 1998, Winona Ryder received the Blockbuster Entertainment Award for Best Supporting Actress.


  • The Frenchman Jean-Pierre Jeunet always had interpreters on set because he didn't speak a word of English.
  • The script by Joss Whedon was revised by several Script Doctors to bring it in line with producers' expectations.
  • At first it was speculated how the fourth part of the saga should take its course. Once the current version was mentioned, according to which Ripley will be cloned in the future and then the "Queen" will be removed from it. In the other version it was supposedly planned that the third part of the saga should only be a dream of Ripley, which she had on the flight home to earth. Either an alien or the queen's eggs were then involuntarily on board.
  • In 2000, after some delays, a video game with the same name was released exclusively for the PlayStation . It is a first person shooter with mouse support and original sound effects from the film. It was distributed by Fox Interactive and Electronic Arts .
  • The classic piece that sounds in the background of the discussion between Perez and Elgyn is the aria Priva son d'ogni conforto from the opera Giulio Cesare by Georg Friedrich Händel .
  • The German horror punk band The Other released in 2004 on their album They're Alive! the song Ripley 8 , which is about the film.
  • The German hip-hop band Die Firma has chosen part of the first dialogue between Weaver and Ryder's character as the song intro in song 11 of their second album.
  • Rudolf "Rudy" Ratzinger sampled some English passages from Weavers and Ryder in the song Bleed In Silence from his German music project wumpscut .


The soundtrack for the film was released on November 24, 1997 under the title Alien - Resurrection . The composer was John Frizzell .


  • Stefan Jung: Alien Resurrection. In: Encyclopedia of Fantastic Films. Corian-Verlag, Meitingen 2013, ISBN 978-3-89048-223-1 (article length: 12 pages)
  • Ann C. Crispin , Joss Whedon : Alien: The Rebirth . The novel about the film. Heyne-Verlag, 1997, ISBN 3-453-13893-7 .
  • Ludwig Gangkofer, Mona Mahmoud, Kathrin Zauner: Alien - a cult film series . Specialized publisher for film literature, Landshut 2007, ISBN 978-3-9809390-4-1 .
  • Andrew Murdock, Rachel Aberly: The Making Of… Alien. Official magazine . Blue Man Publishing, 1997.

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Certificate of Release for Alien - The Rebirth . Voluntary self-regulation of the film industry , November 1997 (PDF; test number: 78 597 K).
  2. Alien - Die Wiedergeburt (1996) German synchronization . Retrieved December 17, 2017.
  3. ^ John L. Flynn: Dissecting Aliens , BOXTREE Verlag, ISBN 0-7522-0863-2
  4. Andrew Murdock, Rachel Aberly: Alien - Die Wiedergeburt, The Making of ... Blue Man Publishing, Munich
  5. Box Office Entry from Alien - The Rebirth
  6. Overview of the Alien - The Rebirth Reviews . Metacritic . Retrieved February 4, 2007.
  7. Alien - The Rebirth. In: Lexicon of International Films . Film service , accessed March 2, 2017 .Template: LdiF / Maintenance / Access used 
  8. ^ Christoph Huber: Film review on
  9. ^ Roland Huschke: film review. Cinema .de
  10. Joss Whedon on Alien - The Rebirth . Retrieved December 15, 2006.
  11. a b Alien - Die Wiedergeburt , comparison of the theatrical version with the special edition on (April 3, 2011)
  12. Alien - the rebirth. Dialog is used by "The Company" .