40 years ago I walked into a movie theatre in downtown Trenton, Ontario, with my friend Dave and saw a movie that remains to this day my all time favorite film.
Ridley Scott’s sci-fi classic – Alien.
As a teenager, it was the first time I watched a film with a strong woman lead. Lt. Ellen Ripley, played by Sigourney Weaver, remains to this day my all time kick ass movie hero.
I thought for sure Dallas (Tom Skerrit) was going to be the movie’s saviour, but he was ambushed early on in a ventilation shaft and glued to a wall. Later on Ripley finds him and kills him, at his request, with a flamethrower.
At first I thought Ripley was a jerk. She wouldn’t let Kane, Dallas, and Lambert back in their ship, the Nostromo, after being told Kane has something attached to his face. Citing quarantine regulations, Ripley, it turns out, made the right call.
Her objections were ignored and soon after Kane gave birth via his chest to an alien like no other. What started off as something the size of a small iguana quickly transformed into a ten foot death machine with acid for blood and a deep seated desire to kill everything.
Soon after everyone on board ends up as prey. Brett dies looking for Ripley’s cat, Dallas dies searching in the air ducts, Ash is exposed as a robot working for the company so Parker knocks his head off with a fire extinguisher. The remaining three crew members then decide to blow the ship up and escape on the ship’s shuttle craft.
Before they can leave Parker and Lambert meet their awful fate while gathering supplies, leaving Ripley alone with the beast.
Figuring she’s safe in the shuttle with her cat, Ripley self-destructs the Nostromo only to realize the alien came with her. Keeping her cool, she uses a
Lt. Ripley: “Final report, the commercial starship Nostromo. Third officer reporting. The other members of the crew—Kane, Lambert, Parker, Brett, Ash, and Captain Dallas—are dead. Cargo and ship destroyed. I should reach the frontier within six weeks. With a little luck the network will pick me up. This is Ripley, last survivor of the Nostromo, signing off.”
I love Alien.