With Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan, the series took a swing in the exact opposite direction from Star Trek: The Motion Picture, putting things on a raw emotional level. This is a sequel, not of the first film, but of an original “Star Trek” episode, “The Space Seed”, also starring Ricardo Montalban in the Khan role. Now, it is 15 years later, and Khan and his men are marooned on a desert planet which is slated as an experiment in the Federation’s Genesis project. This project is actually a bomb of sorts that can take any uninhabited planet and make it habitable for life as we know it, transforming it into a tropical paradise. Khan hijacks a small cruiser piloted by Chekhov (Walter Koenig) and the duel between Khan and Kirk (William Shatner), the man with whom he is filled with hatred, for control of the bomb and for sheer revenge. Nicholas Meyer directs.
Aliens starts where the first one leaves off, with Ripley (Sigourney Weaver) in hypersleep drifting in the escape shuttle. What Ripley doesn’t know until after she is rescued is that she has been that way for 57 years. When she gets back, the company that owned her ship is very interested in why she decided to blow it to smithereens, and are not too impressed with her implausible “alien on board” story, since they have recently inhabited the newly terraformed world Ripley claims to have encountered the alien on, and have found nothing to indicate there is any danger there. That is, until the company loses all signal from the far-off settlement, and offers Ripley full reinstatement if she will act as an advisor to a squad of Marines sent to investigate the affair. Features Michael Biehn, Carrie Henn, Lance Henriksen, and Bill Paxton in support. Written and directed by James Cameron.
The story begins in the year 2122, onboard the commercial towing vessel, the Nostromo. Its mostly blue-collar crew, five men and two women, are awakened prematurely while still in deep space from their cryogenic slumber en route back to Earth. The reason for their early disturbance has to do with the company’s policy to investigate potential alien life forms, so when what appears to be an SOS signal is being transmitted from a moon in their relative vicinity, their overriding primary mission is changed to checking out the situation. Upon landing on the desolate planet, the scientists discover what appears to be eggs containing another form of life, one of which hatches and latches itself to one of the crew. Unable to remove the creature, it is brought back on board the Nostromo, where it grows at a rapid pace to become one of the deadliest killing machines humankind has ever faced. Alien would make a star out of Sigourney Weaver, and Ridley Scott one f the most sought-after directors in Hollywood.
This final entry sees the Empire creating a new Death Star, a feat with such magnitude, even the Emperor himself has come to oversee the progress. Meanwhile, a rescue attempt is underway to try to spring Han Solo from his icy trap in Jabba the Hut’s lair. Luke has grown in his Jedi training, but only a confrontation with Darth Vader will make the transformation complete, and its a showdown Luke wants to avoid now that familial ties have been revealed. The Rebellion once again plans to destroy the Death Star before it becomes functional by eliminating the force field surrounding it generated by a base on a nearby planet, but the Emperor isn’t a fool, and has a few surprises up his sleeve.