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#1
Old 03-28-2011, 05:26 AM
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Two Alien quotes-- what do they mean?

In the pipe, 5 by 5, said by the pilot just before she was Alienized and when the sergeant told Hudson to "Look into my eye". What do those two things mean?

P.S., I figured out "Assholes and elbows" all by myself! I'm so proud of me.
#2
Old 03-28-2011, 05:48 AM
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Going from memory, I believe the phrase "five by five" is communications shorthand, meaning that the dropship radio is currently sending/recieving radio signals pretty much perfectly. The signal strength is strong, and the clarity is perfect.

Dont know about "Look into my eye", but I always thought it was just generic sergeant "dont fuck with me maggots" type lingo.
#3
Old 03-28-2011, 05:54 AM
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"Five by five" is actually radio terminology, referring to signal strength of good strength and clarity—the pilot, Ferro, is probably using the term figuratively. "In the pipe" probably refers to the dropship's being on course for the reentry corridor.
#4
Old 03-28-2011, 06:04 AM
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Incidentally, the pilot says the "five by five" line during the initial drop. This is well before she is personally attacked.

I don't know how significant it is, but when Apone says "look into my eye", he's using his middle finger to pull down his lower eyelid. Of course, he also has a cigar in his hand so, really... who the fuck knows? Maybe he was using the 24th-(or whatever)-century equivalent of "Don't go there."
#5
Old 03-28-2011, 06:42 AM
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I don't know how significant it is, but when Apone says "look into my eye", he's using his middle finger to pull down his lower eyelid.
Highly significant. I always assumed that he was saying, in effect, "Look at my finger orientation" because the trooper has just made an irrational request ("Gee sarge, would you do that for me?") and he was saying "Fuck you" without saying it. Pretty clearly, in fact. Lotsa plausible deniability.



As for that "5 X %", it seems to me to go beyond radio contact -- they're all in the dropship, after all. It seems to be used as a phrase meaning "Everything is going perfectly", rather than "radio communications are OK". It's arguably an extension of that latter meaning.



Gotta admit, though, I never understood "assholes and elbows". Can you explain it to me?

Last edited by CalMeacham; 03-28-2011 at 06:42 AM.
#6
Old 03-28-2011, 06:52 AM
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If you'll recall, the graphic navigation system that the pilot is monitoring shows a series of rectangles through which the ship is flying that indicates the proper descent track. This is the 'pipe' and she is in it.

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Gotta admit, though, I never understood "assholes and elbows". Can you explain it to me?
If someone is working hard, then they are all 'assholes and elbows', in that they aren't standing up, looking around, milling about. All you can see of them is their 'assholes and elbows'. Apone was imploring his squad to get to work.

"Look into my eye" is not the important part. The middle finger is. If I were looking at you and scratching my nose with my middle finger, would you get my message to you?

Last edited by UncleRojelio; 03-28-2011 at 06:55 AM.
#7
Old 03-28-2011, 06:54 AM
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All you can see of them is their 'assholes and elbows'.
??


Sorry -- when I look at a busy, moving person I rarely see assholes. I think you're missing something
#8
Old 03-28-2011, 07:00 AM
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Originally Posted by CalMeacham View Post
Gotta admit, though, I never understood "assholes and elbows". Can you explain it to me?
I heard this a lot when I was working construction. If you're bending down and doing your job (like tying off iron), all the supervisor should see of you is asses and elbows.
#9
Old 03-28-2011, 08:17 AM
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Well, you can't actually see the assholes-- unless you work in a step joint-- but when you are unloading and moving stuff you spend a lot of time picking thongs up and putting them down. At such times it is your ass and your elbows that are on view.

What does being in the pipe have to do with the all clear?
#10
Old 03-28-2011, 08:58 AM
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The '5x5' means that she has good comm and telemetry from the Sulaco; 'in the pipe', as Ranchoth mentions above, means that they are on course and speed for proper reentry and, therefore, everything is as good as can be for their safe approach and landing in the LZ.

Last edited by Death of Rats; 03-28-2011 at 08:59 AM.
#11
Old 03-28-2011, 09:21 AM
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5x5's been pretty well covered.

I have seen the using-the-middle-finger-to-point-to-the-eye thing as a sort of less-obvious way to flip someone the bird. Though when I see it in other places (such as in the highly lauded sci-fi epic Robot Jox), the person is pretending to rub their eye with their finger. The fact that they are making steady eye contact with their target is what makes it work. Sort of a "Just between you and me: Fuck you."

And yeah, "assholes and elbows" is slang for "Get to work!" As with every single idiom in the expanse of the English language, it supposedly dates back to the Royal navy, but take that for what it's worth.
#12
Old 03-28-2011, 10:39 AM
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This thread would make even more sense if the correct movie, Aliens, was referenced in the title.
#13
Old 03-28-2011, 10:51 AM
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Originally Posted by Death of Rats View Post
The '5x5' means that she has good comm and telemetry from the Sulaco; 'in the pipe', as Ranchoth mentions above, means that they are on course and speed for proper reentry and, therefore, everything is as good as can be for their safe approach and landing in the LZ.
I think she was actually referring to telemetry from a beacon at the landing site--it seems more important to have info about where you're going than where you're coming from.

If anyone is still pondering the pipe: Picture the ideal course for the dropship traveling from the Sulaco to the landing pad. Now imagine a pipe centered on that course, roughly the size of the dropship in diameter. "In the pipe" means you're holding to the projected course so closely that you're staying inside that imaginary pipe.
#14
Old 03-28-2011, 11:07 AM
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Originally Posted by gregorio View Post
This thread would make even more sense if the correct movie, Aliens, was referenced in the title.
Yeah and the OP's reply to Cal would have made more sense if she had written "strip joint" instead of "step joint". What a dumb bitch she is!
#15
Old 03-28-2011, 11:15 AM
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Originally Posted by Ranchoth View Post
... "In the pipe" probably refers to the dropship's being on course for the reentry corridor.
could "5x5" possibly be that she was perfectly centered in the corridor?
#16
Old 03-28-2011, 11:50 AM
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Originally Posted by shijinn View Post
could "5x5" possibly be that she was perfectly centered in the corridor?
From what I read, the actress ad libbed this line anyway. Dissecting it much further is not going to make it make more sense.
#17
Old 03-28-2011, 12:02 PM
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Obviously she was just quoting from what the Dropship unit in Starcraft says when you click on it.
#18
Old 03-28-2011, 12:06 PM
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Originally Posted by Biggirl View Post
Well, you can't actually see the assholes-- unless you work in a step joint-- but when you are unloading and moving stuff you spend a lot of time picking thongs up and putting them down. At such times it is your ass and your elbows that are on view.
Depending on the thongs, your asshole may actually be on view.
#19
Old 03-28-2011, 12:37 PM
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Originally Posted by shijinn View Post
could "5x5" possibly be that she was perfectly centered in the corridor?
She's a Buffy fan, and since Faith used that phrase regularly, wanted to seem cool.

What's funny is that a reasonably-well-known proto-Riot Grrrl band out of LA called themselves L7 - the name was from the shape you can make with your two index-and-thumbs to form a square if you think some dude is a loser (an earlier version of holding an L up to your forehead, basically).

So "square" can mean "square, as in a loser" (L7) or "square, as in "all squared up and ready to go..." (5x5) which means you're cool and have your shit together - the exact opposite...

Last edited by WordMan; 03-28-2011 at 12:38 PM.
#20
Old 03-28-2011, 12:42 PM
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I've always assumed that "assholes and elbows" was derived from the drill sergeant in any boot camp movie yelling while the trainees crawl along under barbed wire and potential incoming fire. That is, if you are crawling low to the ground, the highest things the drill sergeant should see are your elbows and your ass. I'm assuming that assholes was a figurative extension of the latter.
#21
Old 03-28-2011, 12:49 PM
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Originally Posted by Malacandra View Post
Depending on the thongs, your asshole may actually be on view.
I'm tellin ya-- dumb bitch!



Or it could be that sulfur spewing, brimstone farting "feature" auto-correct. Can't blame it for the thread title though. That was all me.
#22
Old 03-28-2011, 01:13 PM
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OT, but can someone point me to a thread where the existence of a second Alien movie is justified? I never watched one of the sequels because the idea of Ripley ever going into space again (much less going out looking for another Alien) just struck me as too implausible.

ETA: On topic, I always think of "assholes and elbows" as being a description of a scene where a large number of people are trying to leave a dangerous (or otherwise unpleasant) room simultaneously via a single point of egress.

Last edited by kaylasdad99; 03-28-2011 at 01:16 PM.
#23
Old 03-28-2011, 01:19 PM
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OT, but can someone point me to a thread where the existence of a second Alien movie is justified? I never watched one of the sequels because the idea of Ripley ever going into space again (much less going out looking for another Alien) just struck me as too implausible.
I much prefer the second film to the first. Ripley's escape ship drifts out of touch for half a century and is lost until found by a salvage crew. The rest of it is very plausibly handled, and the people don't act as badly as they did in the original film. Highly recommended.


I could easily do without any of the other sequels.


Or the original film, for that matter. Watch It! The Terror from Beyond Space instead.

Last edited by CalMeacham; 03-28-2011 at 01:20 PM.
#24
Old 03-28-2011, 02:24 PM
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Originally Posted by kaylasdad99 View Post
OT, but can someone point me to a thread where the existence of a second Alien movie is justified? I never watched one of the sequels because the idea of Ripley ever going into space again (much less going out looking for another Alien) just struck me as too implausible.
I can't point you to a thread on the topic, but Aliens justifies this just fine, I would say.

Ripley, revived after 57 years adrift in space, is found guilty for the loss of the Nostromo in the previous film. She does not receive a criminal conviction (it's the company investigating her actions, not the courts), but her flight officer status is revoked. She finds her employment options now very limited.

Later, after the colony on LV-426 falls silent — LV-426 being the planet from Alien — she's offered the opportunity to earn back her commission, if she accompanies a Marine expedition to the planet as a consultant.

If she goes.

Last edited by Bytegeist; 03-28-2011 at 02:28 PM.
#25
Old 03-28-2011, 02:39 PM
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Sorry, still not plausible. I'd take my chances on unemployment, followed by starving to death in the gutter.

And the Nostromo wasn't insured? I call shenanigans on that one.

Last edited by kaylasdad99; 03-28-2011 at 02:40 PM.
#26
Old 03-28-2011, 02:45 PM
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They're still going with or without Ripley. As the only survivor of the previous encounter, you can try to help them live through this and keep Weyland-Yutani from spreading the Alien threat around, or you can let them be thrown to the wolves and the corporation does god knows what trying to get some awesome biological weapons.

If no one was going unless she went, then yeah, forget it. But I suspect Ripley has a teeny axe to grind with Weyland-Yutani and wanted to keep them from fucking up the situation any further.

Last edited by Ferret Herder; 03-28-2011 at 02:45 PM.
#27
Old 03-28-2011, 02:49 PM
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I'd say if Weyland-Yutani gets their mitts on an Alien, they deserve everything said Alien is prepared to dish out...

Me, I'm finding the deepest hole I can, and gibbering away in the darkest corner.
#28
Old 03-28-2011, 02:52 PM
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Sorry, still not plausible. I'd take my chances on unemployment, followed by starving to death in the gutter.
They told her she wouldn't have to go down -- she could stay on the ship. Space Marines would go in and wipe them out. Ripley wanted to be in on the "wipe them out" part.
#29
Old 03-28-2011, 02:55 PM
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Well, have it y'all's way, I guess. The movie exists, and that's that.

Why didn't they take off and nuke the planet from orbit, btw? If they had her along for her expertise it's a shame they ignored it.
#30
Old 03-28-2011, 02:58 PM
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Why didn't they take off and nuke the planet from orbit, btw? If they had her along for her expertise it's a shame they ignored it.
They wanted to -- the quote's from that movie, after all. Watch the flick.



Long story short -- if they could have, and did, the film would make an interesting featurette about xenomorph extermination.
#31
Old 03-28-2011, 02:59 PM
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The pivotal aspect in her decision is that Ripley is still having nightmares. After one such nightmare, she calls up Burke and agrees to go on the mission, after he assures her (untruthfully, it turns out) that the mission is one of extermination.

This is later reflected in Newt's nightmares and the last lines in the movie as the characters enter hypersleep to return to Earth:

Newt: Will I dream? [i.e. without nightmares]
Ripley: I think we both can.


It didn't strike me as improbable at all - Ripley wants revenge and thinks getting some will quiet her nightmares. The third movie, though... that was useless.
#32
Old 03-28-2011, 03:07 PM
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Originally Posted by Bryan Ekers View Post
It didn't strike me as improbable at all - Ripley wants revenge and thinks getting some will quiet her nightmares. The third movie, though... that was useless.
Years later, I can appreciate the third movie on its own merits, but don't like it as the third in the series. Hicks was awesome.
#33
Old 03-28-2011, 03:24 PM
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Originally Posted by WordMan View Post
She's a Buffy fan, and since Faith used that phrase regularly, wanted to seem cool.
You beat me to it!

Buffy: "You okay, Faith?"
Faith: "Five by five, B."
#34
Old 03-28-2011, 04:11 PM
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Originally Posted by kaylasdad99 View Post
Sorry, still not plausible. I'd take my chances on unemployment, followed by starving to death in the gutter.
My impression is that there was a whole, complex stew of motivations. I'm not sure Ripley herself understood why she was going. Some factors:

PTSD--She was suffering persistent nightmares and other symptoms. To some extent, she wanted to confront her fears...or had been driven to the point of being borderline suicidal.

"Families. Jesus."--More people are (at best) in danger from the aliens, including children this time. Ripley has child issues. She has an impulse to try to save them, even if all she can do is warn people of what to expect.

Dead end life--She's blacklisted from her chosen work, stuck as a dockworker in a world where everyone she knew is dead. To some extent, she wants her old life back, and going along as an advisor is a way to get that.

Vindication--She went through a horrific experience, and everyone is denying that it happened. She wants to prove that she was telling the truth.

The Company is crazy--She (wisely) doesn't trust them as far as she could throw them. She knows they're going to want to bring back samples for study. To her, that means her nightmares getting loose on Earth.

To the movie's credit, it manages to introduce all of these motivations plausibly in a very short period of time. Ripley's decision to go along may not have been entirely rational, but it's not unbelievable.

Quote:
And the Nostromo wasn't insured? I call shenanigans on that one.
My take on this is that Ripley's story was a problem for the Company; if it got out that they had planted a colony on top of a nest of hideously deadly aliens, it would be bad PR. They wanted to sweep it under the rug, and the easiest way to do that was to discredit Ripley. Painting her as a nutcase who destroyed her own ship is an attempt to do that.
#35
Old 03-28-2011, 04:17 PM
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And besides, IQs dropped sharply while she was away.
#36
Old 03-28-2011, 04:47 PM
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Originally Posted by CalMeacham View Post
They wanted to -- the quote's from that movie, after all. Watch the flick.



Long story short -- if they could have, and did, the film would make an interesting featurette about xenomorph extermination.
As a matter of fact, they tried, except that the dropship pilot met an unfortunate end. In any case, the Marines had already managed to inadvertently damage the colony's reactor cooling systems badly enough that their primary concern was to take off and prevent from getting nuked by the colony itself.
#37
Old 03-28-2011, 07:41 PM
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Originally Posted by kaylasdad99 View Post
Well, have it y'all's way, I guess. The movie exists, and that's that. ...
that's just heresy - there's a reason why Aliens is one of the rare sequel that is better than the original. in a movie about aliens from outer space with acid for blood, the only implausible points that bother me are the insane growth of the alien nymphs and ... well that's it.
#38
Old 03-28-2011, 07:49 PM
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I tell anyone who will listen that Aliens is the greatest action movie ever made.
#39
Old 03-28-2011, 07:51 PM
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As a matter of fact, they tried, except that the dropship pilot met an unfortunate end. In any case, the Marines had already managed to inadvertently damage the colony's reactor cooling systems badly enough that their primary concern was to take off and prevent from getting nuked by the colony itself.
(sighs) I'll explain the obvious. Of course they tried. But the film was structured so that their attemot wouldn't succeed, because otherwise there would be no movie.
#40
Old 03-28-2011, 07:52 PM
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Originally Posted by WordMan View Post

So "square" can mean "square, as in a loser" (L7) or "square, as in "all squared up and ready to go..." (5x5) which means you're cool and have your shit together - the exact opposite...

Which is bizarre, because L7 used to be code in the New York school system for "borderline special ed." If you didn't know how to use tools, for example, you would say "I'm totally L7 at basic fix-it."
#41
Old 03-29-2011, 08:37 AM
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Unless responders here are familiar with "in the pipe" as pre-existing pilot slang for being exactly on prescribed course, I'd suggest that perhaps "in the pipe" means simply that they've departed and are enroute, as if they are goods that have been inserted into a pipeline from point A to point B.
#42
Old 03-29-2011, 11:26 AM
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Originally Posted by kaylasdad99 View Post
Well, have it y'all's way, I guess. The movie exists, and that's that.
Obviously, you aren't obligated to watch the movie if you feel so strongly. But there's no reason not to give it a shot, it's really a very good movie. This isn't some exploitative explosion-fest like many of the more recent 'action' movies. It's about 2.5 hours of intense, gritty but character-driven action. There are explosions (some big ones!), gun battles and foot chases, but there is also lots of suspense and drama.

Aliens is full of great and memorable characters and all are well acted (esp. Ripley, Burke, Bishop, Vasquez, Hicks and Newt). Sigourney Weaver usually turns in a good performance, and especially so in this movie. Balance explained her character well, and I also think she wanted to act out of concern for the colonists; to help them in any way possible so they wouldn't endure the same fate as her crew mates. In fact, I think all the character's actions make sense in this movie. Not that they make good choices necessarily, but they have reasons to make those decisions that stem from their character's experience, motivation, etc.

There's a reason people are still quoting this movie after 25 years after all. . . If you enjoyed Alien, you are quite likely to enjoy Aliens as well. Many people even prefer the second film. Seriously, give it a chance and I doubt you'll be disappointed.
#43
Old 03-29-2011, 11:02 PM
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Originally Posted by kaylasdad99 View Post
Me, I'm finding the deepest hole I can, and gibbering away in the darkest corner.
I guess you haven't watched Alien 3 then... that's exactly where the alien can be found!

Quote:
Unless responders here are familiar with "in the pipe" as pre-existing pilot slang for being exactly on prescribed course, I'd suggest that perhaps "in the pipe" means simply that they've departed and are enroute, as if they are goods that have been inserted into a pipeline from point A to point B.
There's a graphic of the pipe as they're descending.

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And the Nostromo wasn't insured? I call shenanigans on that one.
Insurance doesn't cover intentional destruction of the ship by the crew.
#44
Old 03-29-2011, 11:21 PM
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Originally Posted by DWMarch View Post
Insurance doesn't cover intentional destruction of the ship by the crew.
Greedy insurance companies, always looking for any excuse not to pay out. They refused to pay for that guy's stomach surgery, too. They said his facehugger was a pre-existing condition.
#45
Old 03-29-2011, 11:59 PM
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Originally Posted by Erdosain View Post
Greedy insurance companies, always looking for any excuse not to pay out. They refused to pay for that guy's stomach surgery, too. They said his facehugger was a pre-existing condition.
snerk! good one.

#46
Old 03-30-2011, 12:31 AM
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Even if the Nostromo had been insured, the company's still likely eating a big loss on the overall mission, including destroyed cargo, plus whatever the total loss of a ship with all hands did to their insurance rates. Even insured out the ass, the company probably was still looking at a hundreds of millions in losses.
#47
Old 03-30-2011, 01:19 AM
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Originally Posted by Enigma42 View Post
Obviously, you aren't obligated to watch the movie if you feel so strongly. But there's no reason not to give it a shot, it's really a very good movie. This isn't some exploitative explosion-fest like many of the more recent 'action' movies. It's about 2.5 hours of intense, gritty but character-driven action. There are explosions (some big ones!), gun battles and foot chases, but there is also lots of suspense and drama.

Aliens is full of great and memorable characters and all are well acted (esp. Ripley, Burke, Bishop, Vasquez, Hicks and Newt). Sigourney Weaver usually turns in a good performance, and especially so in this movie. Balance explained her character well, and I also think she wanted to act out of concern for the colonists; to help them in any way possible so they wouldn't endure the same fate as her crew mates. In fact, I think all the character's actions make sense in this movie. Not that they make good choices necessarily, but they have reasons to make those decisions that stem from their character's experience, motivation, etc.

There's a reason people are still quoting this movie after 25 years after all. . . If you enjoyed Alien, you are quite likely to enjoy Aliens as well. Many people even prefer the second film. Seriously, give it a chance and I doubt you'll be disappointed.
Can I just add that if in any way we have convinced you to give the movie a try, please find the Aliens:Special Edition version. It is IMO superior to the theatrical release.
#48
Old 03-30-2011, 02:55 AM
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Originally Posted by Miller View Post
Even if the Nostromo had been insured, the company's still likely eating a big loss on the overall mission, including destroyed cargo, plus whatever the total loss of a ship with all hands did to their insurance rates. Even insured out the ass, the company probably was still looking at a hundreds of millions in losses.
Forty-two million in adjusted dollars, minus cargo. Yes, I just watched that movie today thanks to you guys.
#49
Old 03-30-2011, 03:06 AM
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Originally Posted by GreedySmurf View Post
Can I just add that if in any way we have convinced you to give the movie a try, please find the Aliens:Special Edition version. It is IMO superior to the theatrical release.
QFT!!

totally snag the directors cut if at all possible.
#50
Old 03-30-2011, 05:17 AM
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Originally Posted by Enigma42
Sigourney Weaver usually turns in a good performance, and especially so in this movie.

Indeed, such a good performance she was nominated for an academy award for "Best Actress" almost unheard of for a Sci-Fi action film.
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