Ridley Scott's Alien remains an indelible masterpiece that inspires today perhaps even more than it did on its original run theatrically in 1979. Alas, I wasn't able to see it in cinemas at that time as my small town movie house knew that I was still a few years shy of eighteen -- the cursed sin of growing up in Little, America, is that everyone knows your age. I did see it as soon as it came out on home video (as your parents or grandparents, readers, for that's what we called it in the Age Before Streaming). Even back then, yes, I found it so captivating and so pure.
It's a simple story, no? Girl Has Spaceship. Girl Meets Alien. Alien Tries To Eat Girl. Chaos Ensues. Girl Wears Space Panties. Girl Kills Alien (spoilers, I guess ...). But it was all rendered in such a memorable way that it no doubt called up nightmares for those who drank it all in from the silver screen of the day.
I have had the good fortune of seeing it up there in shadows and light as, thankfully, our homegrown theatre chain has taken to showing 'classics' of this sort on Tuesday nights; and this was one of their earliest choices. I know that today's audiences prefer CGI over practical miniatures, but I don't: I'd rather films of Alien's era not be updated with modern technology (take that, George Lucas) especially when they deal with story matter as primal as this. That 'rough around the edges' aspect only richens the experience for me, and I suspect others agree.
In any event, the film still works forty-one years later, and that's certainly a testament to getting something done right the first time. Hats off to all involved!
As always, thanks for reading ... and live long and prosper!