Alien Resurrection is a 1997 American science fiction film by 20th Century Fox, and the fourth and final installment of the Alien franchise. The film was directed by French filmmaker Jean-Pierre Jeunet, with a screenplay by Joss Whedon. Alien Resurrection was the first film in the Alien series to be filmed outside of England, at Fox studios in Los Angeles, California.
In the film, which is set 200 years after the preceding installment Alien 3 (1992), Ellen Ripley (Sigourney Weaver) is cloned and an Alien queen is surgically removed from her body. The United Systems Military hopes to breed Aliens to study and research on the spaceship USM Auriga, using human hosts kidnapped and delivered to them by a group of mercenaries. The Aliens escape their enclosures, while Ripley and the mercenaries attempt to escape and destroy the Auriga before it reaches its destination, Earth.
Two hundred years after the events of Alien 3, military scientists on the outer space vessel USM Auriga create a clone of Ellen Ripley (Sigourney Weaver), using DNA from blood samples taken before her death. They extract the embryo of an Alien queen that had been growing inside her at the time of her death, raise it, and collect its eggs for further use. The Ripley clone is kept alive for further study. As a result of her DNA being mixed with the Alien's during the cloning process, she develops enhanced strength and reflexes, acidic blood, and an empathic link with the Aliens.
A group of mercenaries, Elgyn (Michael Wincott), Johner (Ron Perlman), Christie (Gary Dourdan), Vriess (Dominique Pinon), Hillard (Kim Flowers), and Call (Winona Ryder), arrive in their ship, the Betty, delivering several kidnapped humans in stasis. The military scientists use the kidnapped humans as hosts for the Aliens, raising several adult Aliens for study. The Betty crew soon encounter Ripley. Call recognizes her name and tries to kill her, believing she may be used to create more Aliens. Call is too late; the Aliens have already matured and quickly escape confinement, damaging the Auriga and killing most of its crew. Military scientist Dr. Wren (J. E. Freeman) reveals that the ship's default command in an emergency is to return to Earth. Realizing this will unleash the Aliens on Earth, Ripley, the mercenaries, Wren, a Marine named DiStefano (Raymond Cruz), and surviving Alien host Purvis (Leland Orser) decide to head for the Betty and use it to destroy the Auriga.
As the group make their way through the damaged ship, Frank, Sabra, and Christie are killed by Aliens. Call is revealed to be an android after Wren betrays the group. Using her ability to interface with the Auriga's systems, she sets it on a collision course with Earth, hoping to destroy the Aliens in the crash. Wren takes Call hostage, demanding that she abort the collision. Purvis holds Wren's head to his chest just as the Alien embryo he is carrying bursts through his ribcage, causing it to go through Wren's head and kill him.
Ripley discovers that the Alien queen has gained a human ability from her DNA as well: now possessing a womb, it can give birth to live offspring without the need for eggs and human hosts. The resulting newborn, bearing a mixture of human and Alien traits, recognizes Ripley as its mother and kills the Alien queen and Dr. Gediman (Brad Dourif).
Ripley and the surviving mercenaries make their way to the Betty. As they launch, the newborn hybrid attacks Call and kills DiStefano. Ripley kills it by using her own acidic blood to burn a hole through a viewpane, causing the creature to be sucked violently through the hole and into the vacuum of space. The survivors escape in the Betty as the Auriga collides with Earth.
- Sigourney Weaver as Ellen Ripley, reprising her role from the previous three Alien films. After having sacrificed herself to kill the Alien Queen gestating inside her in Alien 3, Ripley has been cloned using blood samples so that the military may extract the Queen embryo. As a result of the cloning process Ripley has been affected by the Alien queen's DNA. She has enhanced strength and reflexes, acidic blood, and can sense the presence of the Aliens.
- Dan Hedaya as General Perez. Perez is the commanding officer of the Auriga and supervises the experiments to clone Ripley and study the Aliens.
- J. E. Freeman as Dr. Wren. Wren is one of several scientists aboard the Auriga involved in cloning Ripley and studying the Aliens. After the Aliens escape he joins the lead characters in their attempt to flee the ship.
- Brad Dourif as Dr. Gediman, another of the scientists involved in cloning Ripley and studying the Aliens.
- Carolyn Campbell as Dr. Williamson, the third member of the science team responsible for cloning Ripley.
- David St. James as Dr. Sprague, another member of the Auriga's science team.
- Raymond Cruz as DiStefano. DiStefano is a soldier in the United Systems Military, stationed aboard the Auriga. When the Aliens break out, he joins the crew in their attempt to escape from the ship.
- Michael Wincott as Frank Elgyn, captain of the mercenary ship Betty. Elgyn brings the Betty to the Auriga in order to sell kidnapped humans in cryostasis to General Perez. He is romantically involved with Hillard.
- Kim Flowers as Sabra Hillard, the assistant pilot of the Betty who is romantically involved with Elgyn.
- Gary Dourdan as Christie, the first mate and second in command of the Betty.
- Ron Perlman as Johner, a mercenary and member of the Betty's crew. Johner plays bad jokes and has a short bad temper, and teases Vriess about his handicap.
- Dominique Pinon as Vriess, the Betty's mechanic. A paraplegic, he uses a motorized wheelchair. Vriess shares a close friendship with Call and an antagonistic relationship with Johner.
- Winona Ryder as Annalee Call, the newest crew member of the Betty. She recognizes Ripley and has knowledge of the Aliens. Call is revealed during the course of the film to be a synthetic and helps the surviving crew interface with the Auriga.
- Leland Orser as Purvis. Purvis is one of several humans who have been kidnapped by the crew of the Betty while in cryosleep and delivered to the Auriga to serve as hosts for the Aliens. Despite having an Alien growing inside him, Purvis joins the surviving crew in an attempt to escape from the Auriga.
- Tom Woodruff, Jr. as the lead Alien. Woodruff had previously played the Alien in Alien 3, and described the Alien in Resurrection as feeling "much more like a dog. It's got dog legs, a more pointed nose, and a more vicious mouth." Weaver praised Woodruff's work, saying that "working with him is like working with Lon Chaney, only Tom's usually covered with K-Y Jelly."Woodruff also played the lead Alien in the sequels Alien vs. Predator and Aliens vs. Predator: Requiem.