I’ll jump in out of lurk mode here and second what D_A is saying. Avatar is a great modern example of a tale full of sound and fury, signifying nothing. It may have set the benchmark for 3D cinema, but to me, that qualifies it more as a tech demo than a passable 3-act film.
Pacific Rim, for example, is one of the ultra-flashiest CG extravaganzas I’ve seen, but there’s still an effort to set up structured narrative, using gaps between the physics-defying action to add needed dimension to the comic-booky characters. Therefore, when a robot impossibly swings an oil tanker like a sword, I shrug it off with a laugh.
But when “scientists” in Avatar prattle on about “Unobtanium” shortly after introducing a parade of bland, one-dimensional characters (including hard-ass military guy and generic corporate slimeball), there’s no recovering from that nose dive. Also… ponytail sex? Seriously?
On the original topic, I do love a good set of preproduction pics, and these are extra nice. I wish stuff that nice could see the light of day as a film. Sorry to be pessimistic, but I think the Alien movie franchise is sorta screwed, much like Terminator. At best, an Alien script will eventually pass through Hollywood’s colon after a dozen rewrites, some desperate sub-par director will drag the project over the finish line, and the result will be something sad, incoherent and embarrassing that we’ll hopefully be smart enough not to pay full price to watch.
I just hope it’s called Aliens: Turbographics so it matches up with Terminator: Genisys.