I don't think I've seen the special edition, but it likely wouldn't matter as I didn't like the movie either of the two times I watched it, so neither.
Alright sweethearts, you heard the man! he doesnt like Aliens! ;P
anyway for me:
Apocalypse Now: Theatrical. HOWEVER, In my dream alternate universe, a really cool cut of AN would be almost exactly like theatrical except 3 things:
1) have willard would discover the plantation all by himself - lance, chef, chief are all dead from that same attack that killed chief and he is last one left. The sequence would placed immediately after willard narrates that he felt kurtz was really close by. After the scene, the only thing left are the 2 scenes right before he arrives at the compound. THe whole plantation sequence would be even more surreal and dream like -as if it was filmed and edited by terrence malick!!!!
2)Once he is taken inside to meet kurtz for the first time - the narration stops. Even in theatrical, I felt there shouldnt have been anymore narration after this and took away from what should have been a surreal final act.
3)There would be a post credit scene of the compound being bombed - man that looked so cool.
Alien: Theatrical. Cinema's greatest hybrid of sci-fi and horror. That 3rd act is still unbelievably intense after almost 40 years . And this movie is soooooo sublime in its design and photography - even the gritty grimy locations! I love the intro credits, with the pacing and the haunting Jerry Goldsmith soundtrack in the background - filmmaking 101 :D
Hoeever, The director's cut does have one very interesting shot when we catch a very quick glimpse of the Alien watching Brett from above the chains.
Aliens: Special Edition. Only weakness is the very first LV426 shot feels clunky. One thing I really like is the fade to ripley - how it shows her cigarette was just burning the whole time and she was just completely lost in her thoughts.
Blade Runner: Director's cut. BUT Havent seen final cut yet.
Terminator 2: Special Edition. I like the kyle reese scene. Yeah, the smile scene is cheesy and i was deeply hurt by john conner making fun of kids that like to play nintendo. But the extended scene with john and sarah arguing about whther to kill the t800 is great.
final note: Apocalypse Now, Aliens and Aliens look and sound so gorgeous on blu ray and it helps alot (although ive heard Aliens color has changed??).
Terminator 2 looks good on blu ray but sometimes looks smooth DNR.
Going to rent blade runner final cut now as I'm sure it looks awesome on blu ray.
THere are great supplementals as well. The Alien anthology that I got from amazon.uk 4 years ago very cheap is second only to LOTR when it comes to supplementals. Its awesome. The Alien 3 documentary is more riveting than the movie.
For AN, i was so happy to have heart of darkness. Poor francis totally taken out of context when he says "Martin sheen cant be dead unless I say he is dead!" But other stuff is great too! The interview with sheen is great. The roger Ebert interview was great. I love the interview Coppola does with John Milius and every 5 minutes he interrupts him and keeps asking 'so what did George do at this point?" "Is this when you started with george?" "when did george get involved" He is desperately trying to lead the conversation and perpetuate the myth that AN was Lucas' vision first & foremost and AN must still be regarded as one of lucas' movies. Milius is having none of it; stating "no, george didnt do anything. I was still writing. It was my idea. He was only going to shoot and only after I finished writing. Thats all he was going to do" ;P Only thing I could have wanted more was more background on when harvey Keital was involved.