3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars SciFi Horror masterpiece
What more is there to say about Scott's masterpiece that hasn't already been said? Not a lot I suspect. Basically, it's `an old dark house' murder mystery but set aboard a monstrous spacecraft, `Nostromo', returning to Earth from the farther reaches of the galaxy laden with 20,000,000 tonnes of mineral ores from distant planets. The inhabitants are in suspended animation...
Published 16 months ago by still searching
7 of 10 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Alien DE - excellent film,shame it isn't the Steelbook DE though1!!
Alien is one of the best scifi films, not much can be said about it's awesomeness, especially this cut w/ DTS!
However - I once again fell victim to the "non-steelbook edition" syndrome that has been haunting these Definitive Edition DVDs recently (see Robocop DE) hence the 3* rating - the piccie here definitely shows the steelbook version. I received a standard card...
Published on 17 Feb. 2008 by J. BLIGHT
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars SciFi Horror masterpiece,
What more is there to say about Scott's masterpiece that hasn't already been said? Not a lot I suspect. Basically, it's `an old dark house' murder mystery but set aboard a monstrous spacecraft, `Nostromo', returning to Earth from the farther reaches of the galaxy laden with 20,000,000 tonnes of mineral ores from distant planets. The inhabitants are in suspended animation allowing them to survive the equally monstrous periods of time involved in traversing such mind numbing distances. In the opening scene we, the ghostly viewers travel through the vast ship along empty corridors, accompanied by the almost subliminal sounds of the ship's engines and machinery, until we reach the life support chamber in which the crew sleep unsuspectingly. There is one jarring moment here: no-one else is on board and we, the omniscient viewers, do not have to open doors through which to travel and yet, in order to enter the chamber in which the crew are ensconced in their life support systems, doors slide open with the faintest of sounds as if air has entered with us, and then close behind us! It's a minor thing but jarring none the less!
Slowly, within their life support pods, the crew begins to stir and the second in command, Kane (John Hurt) is the first to awaken from his enforced slumbers. The pod canopies open. He sits up, slowly opens his eyes and then gets up. Gradually, the others begin to show signs of life. Cut to the next scene in which the crew is at breakfast sharing cereals and coffee and chit-chatting about mundane things like bonuses, which is a particular `beef' with maintenance engineer, Parker (Yaphet Kotto), and his side kick, Brett (Harry Dean Stanton). In the midst of this ordinary domestic scene, in which navigator, Lambert (Veronica Cartwright) has a towel draped around her neck as if just having left the shower, the ship's captain, Dallas (Tom Skerritt) is alerted to a signal from the ship's computer, Mother, by Science Officer, Ash, (Ian Holm). He goes to investigate. Upon his return he tells the other members of the crew that the ship is only halfway home and the crew have been woken to attend to a signal of unknown origin coming from a strange planetoid, which has a gravitational field 0.86 that of Earth's. They land about 2000 m from the signal origin during severe weather sustaining damage to their landing gear and we learn that the ambient conditions are dreadful with a primordial atmosphere and temperature well below zero. Nevertheless, the captain decides they have to investigate, since it's part of their contract, and assigns Kane and Lambert to accompany him.
It is then that the film's title registers in our consciousness. The alien ship from which the signal emanates is like nothing the crew or we have seen before. This feeling is enhanced when we get inside. The alien ship, created by the Swiss artist, H. R. Giger is cavernous, of enormous proportions and has a strange unearthly geometry, reminiscent of that described by H. P. Lovecraft in his weird tales, principally, The Mountains of Madness. Eventually they find one of the ship's alien crew members, presumably, in the main deck area. The crew member is also enormous by human standards and, with a huge open gash in its abdominal region, looks as if it has been dead for a very long time. They leave the main deck to investigate elsewhere, which is where they find what appear to be hundreds of large leathery pouches beneath a blue gaseous haze. This scene, which shows Kane descending on a line into the vast cavernous chamber containing the `pouches', is truly awesome evoking that upon first seeing the inside of the Krell's huge machine in `Forbidden Planet'! Of course, we now know the results of Kane's curiosity and its implications for him and the rest of the crew!
On their return, third in command, Ripley (the superb Sigourney Weaver), back up in the main deck area, can remotely operate the air lock to allow them entry. Sensibly she refuses citing the standing orders regarding quarantine. Ominously, Ash overrides her objections by manually operating the doors to the air lock - and the rest is (movie) history!
The film has everything including a few irritations; for example, in addition to that mentioned earlier, there is the sound of the ship's engines outside in empty space where we should hear nothing. This is annoying since the movie makes a big deal of the fact that `in space no one can hear you scream'! But these are minor compared to its many accomplishments. The opening title sequence vividly sets the tone, the screenplay is brilliant, the editing taught, the acting excellent, the production design literally out of this world and the twist towards the end that is no longer quite so surprising still manages, also quite literally, to pack a visceral punch! And then there is the brilliantly evocative score by Jerry Goldsmith that incorporates, seamlessly, passages of Howard Hanson's 2nd symphony, The Romantic.
Along with Scott's other masterwork, released three years later, Blade Runner, this should be on anyone's list of all-time great SiFi/horror/fantasy masterpieces.
I'm only really concerned with the original movie and can take or leave the sequels but the Blu-ray 4 disc anthology, for the price, is also ridiculously inexpensive too!
5.0 out of 5 stars The most perfect and the most terrifying horror movie of all times,
The title of this review is not an exaggeration. This is one of the movies which actually achieved perfection. There is not one flaw in it and nothing I could criticize. To the contrary, all the ingredients were mixed just to the right proportion to achieve the perfect mix: the story, the actors performance, the direction, the camera work, the lights (and shadows, especially the shadows!), the sound, the alien design and the music.
Let's begin with the story - it is very well thought and watertight. Everything happens on the board of "Nostromo", a giant spaceship which carries 20 milion tons of "mineral" (we are not informed what it is and it is irrelevant) and the whole plant that already "proceeds" it during the whole long trip back to Earth. The great idea was to make the "Nostromo" an industrial facility and the heroes the crew of a commercial spaceship. There is nothing here from the classical SF movies, such as clean neat uniforms, a half military half scientific crew of idealistic explorers, etc - no, here we have seven hard working people who are just trying to make a living. They wear practical working suits (even in space era, when you fix something, you just get dirty and sweating), think about their contracts, spend lot of times bitching about the work conditions and the food (especially the food), etc. And when the unexpected threat appears, they act like normal human beings - they desperately try to survive. That gives the movie an air of credibility and creates a bond between the viewer and the characters. Also, the industrial character of the ship gives an infinite number of hideouts to the unexpected and unwelcome guest...
All actors are just incredible. The cast is brilliant and it is worthy to remind it once more:
- Tom Skerritt is captain Dallas
- John Hurt is first officer Kane
- Sigourney Weaver (incredible incredible performance) is second officer Ripley
- Ian Holm (totally stunning performance) is medical/scientifical officer Ash
- Veronica Cartwright is navigator/radio officer Lambert
- Yaphet Kotto (totally impressive) is chief mechanician Parker
- Harry Dean Stanton (an extremely brilliant and touching performance) is mechanician specialist Brett
- Jones the Cat is playing himself - and he performs very well too.
The work of the director, Ridley Scott, makes him one of the greatest movie makers ever. Every scene is perfect and flawless. If you saw "Blackhawk Down", think about the incredible quality of this movie and multiply it by factor ten - and you will get "Alien". What is it to say more? Nobody could do this movie better - not even James Cameron or Steven Spielberg.
All of above applies to the camera work - everything that should be shown is shown and more critically, everything that should be concealed (or half concealed) was concealed. There is not one miss.
The lights in "Alien" are in my modest opinion the greatest technical achievement in this field ever - no one managed to do more amazing tricks of the lights in any movie ever, before or since then. As stated above, "Nostromo" is an industrial plant AND a space ship - and for that reason (companies always cut costs) only what is absolutely necessary is fully illuminated and the rest is not. It gave the unique pattern of lights, half shadows, almost complete darkness and dark places which manage to create an atmosphere of pure terror, as I never saw before or since. It gets even better once the alarm lights start.
The sound is also a perfect achievement. As an industrial plant, "Nostromo" is never exactly silent - it hums, it sings this special industrial background noise, which gives an unique atmosphere. In some places (this is an old and very big ship) water is leaking, in others some unused chains are moved by air currents, etc. Once the alarm is sounded, the maestry with which this upsetting alarm sound is used is simply undescriptible.
The design of the creature was clearly inspired somewhere very very high - or deep deep below. A great number of horrors die when the creature is revealed, because most of monsters are simply ridiculous. Not this one!! When ultimately (and very briefly) we see the alien - it is nothing short of demoniac. In all of its forms. The same thing applies to the alien spaceship - it is so alien, that even though it is just an old wreck, it is simply terrifying. The alien radio signal is even better (or worse, if you prefer).
And last but not least there is the music - very discreet but just perfectly fitting every scene.
One more thing, about the deleted scenes - they are worth seeing, but I am finaly glad that they were not included in the movie. One of them, featuring Dallas and Ripley (and Brett, in a way) would actually put a black spot on this otherwise perfect movie. Still, good thing that they are included.
I usually do not write reviews that long and that histerically enthusiastic, but this movie is worth it. I saw it seven times at cinema (the first time I ran away in the middle - I was 13 and simply couldn't take it). This is a marvel, a wonder, a treasure. Get it and keep it.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant,
I love the movie and I love this DVD, I haven't watched the extra features, but they look great. The DVD was in great condition and I'm very happy. The deleted scenes were awesome if you ask me :P I got told I'm a geek but a proud one!
7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent,
The director's cut of this seminal sci-fi film is only slightly longer than the theatrical release.
Notable inclusions are: the whole crew listening to the garbled SOS signal (very chilling), Ripley getting punched/slapped in a fight with Lambert because she wouldn't let the investigating party back on bord (quarantine rules), and the infamous Dallas scene where he is coccooned as either food / host material (but without dialogue).
The only problem with this last scene is that it has been argued that it tends to break up the action and suspense that has been building as Ripley messes around with Nostromo's self destruct/ runs from the alien...but I think it's paced very well.
Despite this though, there's not much to choose between both versions.
This is a visually remastered (the film's original negative has undergone some digital cleanup and restoration) attempt with DTS so it is also an excellent reference DVD with which to show off your home cinema system (the opening shots as they orbit the planet are great).
The only dissapointment is the exclusion of "original trailers" from the extra's, which is there on the "standard" single disc edition (although, maybe I simply couldn't find them :D ).
Overall though, this still doesn't detract from an excellent dvd release that includes a whole host of other great extra's like HRGiger art....
5.0 out of 5 stars UNCUT VERSION OF ALIEN 1979 (STRONG LANGUAGE MISSING) SEARCH?,
This review is from: Alien - Definitive Edition [DVD]  (DVD)
Don`t have this definitive edition version of the movie but does anybody out there know of where or what dvd contains the original uncut dialogue version of alien 1979? I seem to remember watching this as a kid on a VHS video in the early 80`s and there was lot more strong language(swearing) in the version I saw, especially the scene when the android malfunctions and attacks Ripley and the black guy. This is a truly great movie but banned movie cuts made by whitehouse back in the day have ruined it. Surprising enough it had a lot more impact with the strong language left in. Here`s hoping a copy still exists?
33 of 42 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Lucas Take Note,
Quite frankly, this is the ultimate in customer care. A number of us do not want Alien 3 & 4, so did not buy the box set. by releasing them seperatley, you get to buy just the ones you want.
A very nice feature is being able to choose between the original issue of the film or the new version. George Lucas, take note of this with your imminent Star Wars releases please.
The remastered print is amazing - visual and audio quality superb.
The extras are too numerous to list here - an outstanding example of how to reissue a classic film properly.
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars ALIEN - A HORROR CLASSIC,
By A Customer
When I realised that Alien was going to be released on DVD, fully restored and with brilliant extras, I didn't delay in purchasing it. Either should you. This film is often described as Ridley Scott's Fright Machine - an endless foray of atmosphere, startling images and genuinely terrifying moments. The DVD features give the film itself justice, it includes great insights into the production of the film and Scott's commentary is really interesting and actually helpful to the audience. The disc also includes some fantastic deleted scenes - most notably a scene where Riply encounters Dallas cocooned and is forced to burn him.
The two sequels which followed this classic (lets forget the abyssmal Alien Resurrection shall we) were fantastic, but don't match the horror and sheer ferocity of this. The film made stars of Sigourney Weaver and Ridley Scott and became a milestone of the horror genre at the time. It is without doubt one of the best films of the productive 1970's, and still haunts audiences today. I'll give you two reasons why you should buy this. Number One - to witness the scene on DVD where Dallas is chased by Alien in the the air vent, boy that's scary! Number Two - it would fit into any proper DVD collection out there. Enjoy.
7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliance on a budget,
This superb film makes a mockery out of the "megabuck" sci-fi attempts that have followed it, including I'm afraid its own follow-ups.
I can remember watching it in the cinema when it came out and therein lies the only problem, it is far better watched on the big screen.
Its portrayal of a spaceship as a Damp and grimy hulk was a revelation at the time when white plastic and spandex suits were what the future was supposed to look like !
All made on a small budget in the U.K. it is simply the best sci-fi horror ever made.
5.0 out of 5 stars still the best sci-fi horror space movie today,
This review is from: Alien [Blu-ray]  (Blu-ray)
All time Classic Fantastic movie and looks and sounds stunning on blueray and for a 1979 movie it looks better than some of the new movies out now days for the people that say it's borning cus there is only one alien and it's slow that's how it's ment to be filmed so you get the feeling that you no somthing is there but you cant see it still its to late only hear it moving i wud say if the people that gave it low stars don't watch it simple go watch Pacific rim or a another action movie
5.0 out of 5 stars A-must-have DVD.,
Many people have seen this movie and if you have not- you should watch it. not just watch it, also own the DVD and you wont regret it. Its one of top movies of all the time. Even with modern technology we have today, many sci fi movies nowadays cant beat this film.
Ive lost the count how many time ive watch this film but I watched it again recently and it reminded me why i was right to order for this DVD so its worth the every penny.
No problem with the delivery.
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Alien - Definitive Edition [DVD]  by Ridley Scott (DVD - 2007)