Still more lazy thoughts from this one…

TMT: “We’re on an express elevator to hell; going down!”

This is the next entry in a Theatre… a Movie… and a Time, a series that was begun here. I moved this memory download up specifically in response to an upcoming blog series, John Kenneth Muir’s The Cameron Curriculum. As well, this month marks the 25th anniversary of the extraordinary film in question. Beginning his week, the author and TV/film critic will review Cameron’s third major motion picture to open the series. He will endeavor to examine…

“…one Cameron film a week, until we’re done, or until the readers shout uncle.”


The Marina Del Rey Six:



July 20, 1986: Times were a changin’. As much I enjoyed going to the grand movie palaces of my Los Angeles hometown, sometimes convenience (and cool beachside weather) came into play. Still, heading out to the Marina Del Rey area of L.A. County wasn’t bad, even if this theatre did epitomize the newer, blander movie experiences ahead for local ticket patrons. My long-time, and soon-to-be ex-, girlfriend (the same one who attended Alien with me) came along for one of our fewer and fewer movie dates together.

Though the venue, the Marina Del Rey Six, did not engender anything close to memorable, James Cameron’s Aliens made up for it… in spades. The expectations on the Terminator director for delivering a sequel based upon Ridley Scott’s 1979 groundbreaking sci-fi horror film (one that is covered here in the series) were extraordinarily high. But damn it, the enfant terrible director and cast delivered for all in attendance at that Sunday afternoon showing!

Note: this was my initial exposure to the theatrical cut. I wouldn’t catch the even better Director’s Cut till 1988. Presented on the now abandoned technology that was Laserdisc, in fact. At a friend’s house… on a date with my future bride!

The entire TMT series can be found here. If you’re interested how it’s put together, click here.

13 Responses to “TMT: “We’re on an express elevator to hell; going down!””

  1. John Kenneth Muir

    Hi Michael,

    Thanks for starting off the Cameron Curriculum with such fanfare. Great quote from the film (and apt; VERY apt). Can you believe it’s been 25 years since Aliens?

    • le0pard13

      Happy to promote this, John. I’m really looking forward to this James Cameron series. It’s a perfect summer season subject. A lot has happened in 25 years, my friend. Thanks.

  2. The Sci-Fi Fanatic


    This film is wonderful for so many reasons, not least of which, is that it is so infinitely quotable. Think about all of the wonderful dialogue and quotes and quips throughout the film that make it so memorable and lasting. All the best, sff

  3. Joe

    If you want to re-live the experience, several cast members (Michael Biehn, Lance Henriksen, Jenette Goldstein) and producer Gale Anne Hurd will be at a 25th anniversary screening of ALIENS at the New Beverly on July 16… See you there?

    • le0pard13

      Argh! I just checked and the advanced online ticket sales have ended for this! The New Bev hints “… a small quantity of additional tickets may become available.” I hope to see if I can get a ticket for this. That’s an awesome line up of cast members and producer for this celebration. Man, I hope I can join you there. I’m going to try, Joe! Thanks for the heads up!

  4. Rachel

    I love this movie! I’ve been meaning to watch it on DVD because the last time I watched it was on VHS (yep, it’s been that long!) and the sound quality was so terrible. I’m thinking the DVD version will be a much better way to view.

  5. Kevin (Col. Mortimer)

    Funny, my good friend lives in a condo directly across the street from the Marina Del Rey 6 (and I used to work for UA back in college). I haven’t been to it lately, but did actually visit this theatre in 1993 before I lived in Los Angeles to see that fondly remembered classic: Jason Goes to Hell: The Final Friday.

    • le0pard13

      That is so cool, Kevin. I know that neighborhood well. Tell your friend my family and I make regular trips to Nichols Restaurant (along with the Costco up Glencoe). Thank you very much.

  6. TMT: Learning to Love “A Royale with cheese” | It Rains… You Get Wet

    [...] October 22, 1994: a year before children would enter the life my wife and I had to that point, the film Pulp Fiction arrived. I’d read or seen a number of positive reviews for the film at the time of its release, in print and on television. My younger brother (who was nicknamed the ‘mountain lion’ by me because he’s rarely seen in this habitat, though we know he exists) was hanging out with us for a short period back then. On this Saturday, I asked him to join me on one more segue to another film in what is a long line of them. My wife did not enlist for this excursion as by this time, more than five years into our marriage, she knew all too well that my taste in cinema was not hers. What can I say? I married a smart woman. The old standby of the Marina Del Rey Six beckoned (the same place where I first saw Aliens). [...]


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