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Alien (1979)

R  |   |  Horror, Sci-Fi  |  22 June 1979 (USA)
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Ratings: 8.5/10 from 518,617 users   Metascore: 83/100
Reviews: 1,075 user | 379 critic | 22 from Metacritic.com

The commercial vessel Nostromo receives a distress call from an unexplored planet. After searching for survivors, the crew heads home only to realize that a deadly bioform has joined them.



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Top Rated Movies #52 | Won 1 Oscar. Another 15 wins & 19 nominations. See more awards »



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Complete credited cast:
Helen Horton ...
Mother (voice)


A commercial crew aboard the deep space towing vessel, Nostromo is on its way home when they pick an SOS warning from a distant planet. What they don't know is that the SOS warning is not like any other ordinary warning call. Picking up the signal, the crew realize that they are not alone on the spaceship when an alien stowaway is on the cargo ship. Written by blazesnakes9

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


The Scariest Movie Ever Made. Experience it only on the big screen (USA 2003 re-release) See more »


Horror | Sci-Fi

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for sci-fi violence/gore and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:





Release Date:

22 June 1979 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Alien: The Director's Cut  »

Box Office


$11,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

£208,081 (UK) (31 October 2003)


£379,140 (UK) (7 November 2003)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


| (director's cut)

Sound Mix:

(70 mm prints)| (as Dolby Stereo)


(Eastman Kodak)|

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The space jockey prop was 26 feet tall. See more »


When the chestburster erupts out of Kane, Lambert is shown with a terrified/disgusted expression and can be heard saying, "Oh God," when she is by the blood spatter but her lips don't move. See more »


[first lines]
Brett: This is the worst shit I've ever seen, man.
Parker: What you say? You got any biscuits over there?
Ripley: Here's some cornbread.
Parker: Cornbread. Yeah.
Lambert: I am cold.
Parker: Still with us, Brett?
Brett: Right.
Kane: Oh, I feel dead.
Parker: Anybody ever tell you you look dead, man?
See more »


Referenced in Humanoids from the Deep (1980) See more »


Incidental music from 'Symphony No. 2 ('Romantic')
by Howard Hanson
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

A horror classic that has stood the test of time! Still by far the best movie in the series.
12 December 2002 | by (Perth, Australia) – See all my reviews

'Alien' while technically science fiction is also one of the greatest horror/suspense movies ever made. Ridley Scott is now one of the most well known and successful directors in Hollywood, but I don't think anything he's made in the last ten years is a patch on this perfect film, which is a near masterpiece in my opinion. In fact, on reflection there are only three Scott movies I genuinely like, those being his first three. The last of these 'Blade Runner' was released twenty years ago now, so to me Scott is long past his use by date. Whatever, 'Alien' itself is a brilliant piece of work, and is almost flawless. Scott's direction is superb and everything else about it is outstanding - a strong script from Dan O'Bannon et al, an evocative score from Jerry Goldsmith, brilliant design and special effects, including the amazing contributions from H.R.Giger, all add up to an amazing movie experience. I also really liked how the cast were character actors and not "stars" so there was plenty of suspense generated as to who will live and who will die. This is something very few subsequent movies have done, 'Pitch Black' being one of the exceptions. Sigourney Weaver may be an icon as Ripley now, but when the movie was first released she was virtually unknown, having had a small cameo in Woody Allen's 'Annie Hall' and not much else. The rest of the cast are equally as good. I especially enjoyed Yaphet Kotto ('Blue Collar') and the legendary Harry Dean Stanton ('Wise Blood') as the wise cracking "below deck" crew. Many people seem to prefer James Cameron's sequel 'Aliens' over this, but as I much prefer horror and suspense movies to action ones I think this is definitely the better movie, and still the strongest and most effective in the series. 'Alien' is a horror classic and an absolutely unforgettable movie that I can't recommend highly enough. If you haven't seen it before watch it immediately!

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