8.5/10
560,738
1,107 user 390 critic

Alien (1979)

R | | Horror, Sci-Fi | 22 June 1979 (USA)
Trailer
2:05 | Trailer

Watch Now

From $2.99 on Amazon Video

ON TV
ON DISC
ALL
After a space merchant vessel perceives an unknown transmission as distress call, their landing on the source planet finds one of the crew attacked by a mysterious lifeform. Continuing their journey back to Earth with the attacked crew having recovered and the critter deceased, they soon realize that its life cycle has merely begun.

Director:

Writers:

(story), (story) | 1 more credit »
Popularity
276 ( 22)
Top Rated Movies #53 | Won 1 Oscar. Another 16 wins & 19 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Aliens (1986)
Action | Adventure | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.4/10 X  

The planet from Alien (1979) has been colonized, but contact is lost. This time, the rescue team has impressive firepower, but will it be enough?

Director: James Cameron
Stars: Sigourney Weaver, Michael Biehn, Carrie Henn
Alien 3 (1992)
Action | Horror | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

After her last encounter, LT Ellen Ripley crashlands on Fiorina Fury 161, a maximum security prison. When a series of strange and deadly events occur shortly after her arrival, Ripley realizes that she brought along an unwelcome visitor.

Director: David Fincher
Stars: Sigourney Weaver, Charles S. Dutton, Charles Dance
Action | Adventure | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  

A cyborg, identical to the one who failed to kill Sarah Connor, must now protect her young son, John Connor, from a more advanced cyborg, made out of liquid metal.

Director: James Cameron
Stars: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Linda Hamilton, Edward Furlong
Action | Horror | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

Two centuries after her death, Ellen Ripley is revived as a powerful human/alien hybrid clone who must continue her war against the aliens.

Director: Jean-Pierre Jeunet
Stars: Sigourney Weaver, Winona Ryder, Dominique Pinon
Action | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

A human-looking indestructible cyborg is sent from 2029 to 1984 to assassinate a waitress, whose unborn son will lead humanity in a war against the machines, while a soldier from that war is sent to protect her at all costs.

Director: James Cameron
Stars: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Linda Hamilton, Michael Biehn
Action | Adventure
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  

Archaeologist and adventurer Indiana Jones is hired by the U.S. government to find the Ark of the Covenant before the Nazis.

Director: Steven Spielberg
Stars: Harrison Ford, Karen Allen, Paul Freeman
Die Hard (1988)
Action | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  

John McClane, officer of the NYPD, tries to save his wife Holly Gennaro and several others that were taken hostage by German terrorist Hans Gruber during a Christmas party at the Nakatomi Plaza in Los Angeles.

Director: John McTiernan
Stars: Bruce Willis, Alan Rickman, Bonnie Bedelia
Jurassic Park (1993)
Adventure | Sci-Fi | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

During a preview tour, a theme park suffers a major power breakdown that allows its cloned dinosaur exhibits to run amok.

Director: Steven Spielberg
Stars: Sam Neill, Laura Dern, Jeff Goldblum
Adventure | Comedy | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  

A young man is accidentally sent thirty years into the past in a time-traveling DeLorean invented by his friend, Dr. Emmett Brown, and must make sure his high-school-age parents unite in order to save his own existence.

Director: Robert Zemeckis
Stars: Michael J. Fox, Christopher Lloyd, Lea Thompson
Action | Adventure | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  

When Dr. Henry Jones Sr. suddenly goes missing while pursuing the Holy Grail, eminent archaeologist Indiana Jones must follow in his father's footsteps and stop the Nazis.

Director: Steven Spielberg
Stars: Harrison Ford, Sean Connery, Alison Doody
Blade Runner (1982)
Sci-Fi | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  

A blade runner must pursue and try to terminate four replicants who stole a ship in space and have returned to Earth to find their creator.

Director: Ridley Scott
Stars: Harrison Ford, Rutger Hauer, Sean Young
Action | Adventure | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.8/10 X  

After the rebels have been brutally overpowered by the Empire on their newly established base, Luke Skywalker takes advanced Jedi training with Master Yoda, while his friends are pursued by Darth Vader as part of his plan to capture Luke.

Director: Irvin Kershner
Stars: Mark Hamill, Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher
Edit

Cast

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

Storyline

A commercial crew aboard the deep space towing vessel, Nostromo is on its way home when they pick up 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

Taglines:

Sometimes the scariest things come from within See more »

Genres:

Horror | Sci-Fi

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

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

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Official Sites:

Country:

|

Language:

|

Release Date:

22 June 1979 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Alien: The Director's Cut  »

Box Office

Budget:

$11,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

£208,081 (UK) (31 October 2003)

Gross:

$78,900,000 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (director's cut)

Sound Mix:

(70 mm prints)| (as Dolby Stereo)

Color:

(Eastman Kodak)|

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Dan O'Bannon first encountered H.R. Giger's unique style when the two were briefly working on Alejandro Jodorowsky's ill-fated attempt at making a movie based on Frank Herbert's "Dune." It has since been said that 'Alien' became the movie that 'Jodorowsky's Dune' was supposed to be. See more »

Goofs

(at around 13 mins) The planetoid where the Nostromo finds the alien spaceship is said to be 1200 kilometers diameter with a surface gravity of .86G. (Earth is 1G.) The horizon would curve visibly on a moon that tiny. By Newton's Law of Gravitation, a body that small would need a density of 50 grams per cubic centimeter to achieve .86G. This is more than twice the density of osmium, the densest element known. It's unlikely that the moon would be made of a massive ball of some hitherto unheard-of, super-dense, stable element. Together, this indicates that the size of the moon is incorrect. (Visible in 2003 director's version, but not in 1979 theatrical version) See more »

Quotes

[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 »

Connections

Spoofed in Blue Gender: The Warrior (2002) See more »

Soundtracks

Eine kleine Nachtmusik'
by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (as W.A. Mozart)
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
"Alien" is not just the monster, it's the atmosphere and the way you feel!
6 February 2005 | by (Denmark) – See all my reviews

In "Alien" we follow a seven man crew en-route to earth on board the huge space freighter "Nostromo". The crew is in cryosleep, but the on board computer interrupts the journey when a foreign radio signal is picked up. It originates from an uninhabited planet and the crew lands to investigate. There they make contact with an alien life-form...

What makes Alien so great is the constant feel of uneasiness. Right from the beginning you have a feeling that something is wrong. The crew is not particularly friendly towards each other, and you truly feel all the in-group tension. The ship itself is a huge worn out industrial-style maze of halls and corridors, and it feels more like a prison than a place to live. It is as if not only the alien but also the ship itself is against the humans. The Alien itself is the scariest monster in history because it is a ruthless, soul-less parasite completely devoid of any human or civilized traits. The design of the monster is a stroke of genius. Sure it has a humanoid form, but it has no facial traits or anything else which could give away emotions or intentions. Its actions reveals no weaknesses nor civilized intelligence. The Alien is more or less the opposite of everything human and civilized, plus the creature is more well-adapted to the inhumane interior of the ship than the humans who build it. To sum up, you then have a setting where the humans are caught in a web of in-group tensions, an inhospitable ship and the perfect killer which thrives in the ships intestines. You almost get the feel that the humans are the ones who are alienated to each other and to their own ship.

Ridley Scott tells the story with a perfectly synchronized blend of visuals and sounds.

The actors do a superb job, portraying their characters in a subtle but very realistic way. The seven man crew is not a bunch of Hollywood heroes. They are ordinary people with strengths and weaknesses, likes and dislikes. In this way they all seem so fragile when confronted with the enemy.

As mentioned the ship is very claustrophobic and Ridley Scott adds to the eeriness by using camera movement, lights and shadows in an effective way. The living quarters are bright and should be comfortable to the crew, but there is something sterile about it all. The rest of the ship is basically a huge basement.

The music by Jerry Goldsmith underlines the eeriness so well, and the movie wouldn't have worked without his score. Combined with the sounds of the ship it all adds to the uneasiness.

This is not a story about heroic people who boldly teams up against evil. It's a story about ordinary people facing true fear, which is the fear without a face. The fear we can't understand and can't negotiate with, because its only goal is to survive on the expense of us. It's a story where some people bravely fight back whilst others are destroyed by the terror. It's a story where people a killed in a completely random way. There is no higher-order justice behind who gets to live and who dies. All seven characters are just part of a race where the fittest - not necessarily the most righteous - will prevail, and all seven characters start the race on an equal footing. None of them are true heroes, and none of them are true villains.

All the above makes Alien so great as a horror movie. The terror isn't just the Alien itself, it's the entire atmosphere which gets so effectively under your skin, that you just can't shrug it off after the end credits like you can with so many other Hollywood horror movies. The title "Alien" doesn't just refer to the monster, it is the theme of the movie and it is the feeling you have during and after the movie. 9/10


260 of 288 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Boring and extremely overrated gcash666
a problem with Alien 3 stephenalienkissane
Facehugger attack benigma-258-779866
Am I the only one who thinks... gollumsmeagolrocks
Kane... pauloferreira-33725
How did alien grow? brucedgo
Discuss Alien (1979) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page