Update: Here’s part two of this.
So! Turns out 14 months ago I watched the movie “Alien” for the first time (I know!) and a few days later started to write about it. BUT completely out of character I never finished it? What!
Here’s what I had:
“Alien” is a 1979 film about an alien. It is the first in a series of movies that include three sequels, two cross-overs and, starting next year, two prequels.* The only one of these I had seen so far was 2007’s “AVPR: Aliens vs Predator – Requiem,” that, while not the greatest movie ever made, still has the best title of all times, at least in the German version: “Aliens vs. Predator 2.” That’s just pure genius.
Anyway, of course I knew some about the Alien movies before I finally watched the first one last week. Ripley, face-huggers, chest-bursters – all concepts I was aware of. H.R. Giger’s designs, the Nostromo, the alien itself. Pop culture had taught (spoiled?) me well. And it’s not like you go watch a movie called “Alien” and are surprised when there’s an alien all of a sudden.
Still, even the opening credits held a few surprises for me. Scott, Weaver, of course. John Hurt I knew about as well, although I never recognize him in anything. But Ian Holm? Harry Dean Stanton? I had no idea they were in this. I’m so used to seeing them, well, old. But their voices give them away, of course. Especially Stanton, who I found very enjoyable here.
So, the movie begins with the spaceship’s computer, Mother, waking the crew of seven up from their deep sleep way ahead of schedule because it picked up a distress signal from a planet nearby. And although it’s made pretty clear that the Nostromo is a trade ship and not on some kind of Enterprise-science mission, they send an away team to investigate. Can you guess what happens next? I sure could. Instead of waiting two hours for the sun to come up and the crazy storm that’s disrupting radio communication (not to mention sight) to calm down, three crew-members take a walk on this alien planet, find some sort of alien building or downed spaceship or who knows what and a vast cave beneath that. John Hurt, despite everyone having a “bad feeling about this” climbs into the cave and finds a whole lot of alien eggs on the ground.
And that… that’s it? But! What happens next? Will it be awesome? Or scary? Possible both?
I’ll try to recall that fateful night when I watched “Alien” (Was it November 19, 2010?, you ask? Yes! Yes, it was!) and for once finish what I started!
Or on the weekend. But not a day later!
*) When I wrote it, those two links went to projects tentatively called “Untitled Alien Prequel Part 1” and “Untitled Alien Prequel Part 2.”