Alien Nation


Alien Nation

Critics Consensus

Alien Nation takes the interesting premise of extraterrestrials living among us and doesn't do enough with it, emphasizing a police procedural plotline over the more intriguing sci-fi elements.



Total Count: 29


Audience Score

User Ratings: 15,898
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Alien Nation Photos

Movie Info

In 1988, Earth makes the first contact with an alien civilization. In 1991, these aliens, known as Newcomers, slowly begin to be integrated into human society after three years of quarantine.

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Mandy Patinkin
as Det. Samuel 'George' Francisco
James Caan
as Det. Sgt. Matthew Sykes
Terence Stamp
as William Harcourt
Kevin Howard
as Kipling
Kevyn Major Howard
as Rudyard Kipling
Leslie Bevis
as Cassandra
Peter Jason
as Fedorchuk
Jeff Kober
as Joshua Strader
Roger Aaron Brown
as Det. Bill Tuggle
Ed Krieger
as Alien Dealer
Tony Perez
as Alterez
Brian Thompson
as Trent Porter
Don Hood
as Moffet
Earl Boen
as Duncan Crois
Robert Starr
as Coroner's Attendant
Bobby Sargent
as Coroners Driver
Bebe Drake
as Computer Operator
Edgar Small
as Minkler
Tom De Franco
as Detective
Angela O'Neill
as Kristin Sykes
Kendall Conrad
as Mrs. Francisco
Tom Morga
as Raincoat
Jessica James
as Mrs. Porter
Tom Finnegan
as Natuzzi
Doug MacHugh
as Victor Goldrup
Alec Gillis
as Newcomer in Bar
Shûko Akune
as Police Secretary
Van Ling
as Newcomer #1 on TV
George Robotham
as Boat Captain
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Critic Reviews for Alien Nation

All Critics (29) | Top Critics (2) | Fresh (15) | Rotten (14)

  • Instead of exploring the differences and strangeness of the aliens, and giving them the kind of interesting particularity that "Blade Runner" did, Alien Nation can't domesticate and demystify its aliens quickly enough.

    May 11, 2018 | Full Review…

    Jay Carr

    Boston Globe
    Top Critic
  • 'Alien Nation' fails to offer the viewer more than a vague entertainment. [Full Review in Spanish]

    Sep 11, 2019 | Full Review…
  • There are the requisite chase seens, the ingenious murder weapons, the evil propogators of greed andhate. And somehow they don't bury you. In the end, it's the wit and heart of Alien Nation that win you over.

    Dec 8, 2017 | Full Review…
  • With the sci-fi and horror aspects toned down, Alien Nation becomes little more than a cop show with a twist-and one that will satisfy only the most gullible of action fans.

    Feb 18, 2014 | Rating: 2.5/5 | Full Review…
  • Uma idéia potencialmente instigante que acaba sendo desperdiçada por um roteiro tomado pelos clichês.

    Dec 31, 2008 | Rating: 2/5
  • Fascinating and somewhat timely themed sci-fi flick, a minor classic.

    Aug 10, 2006 | Rating: 5/5

Audience Reviews for Alien Nation

  • Sep 13, 2018
    Whereas the premise is intriguing and the cultural differences between the two main characters are amusing for a while, soon the movie decides that it should be more action than sci-fi, imploding in an awful last half-hour full of car chases, stupid twists and ugly TV clichés.
    Carlos M Super Reviewer
  • Dec 03, 2010
    A great film. A fantastic mixture of science fiction, suspense, comedy and action. A genre-bending classic that you cant help but love. A wonderfully entertaining winner that's just a great buddy-cop movie with lots to offer. A great new twist on a familiar background. A smart, funny and action-packed thrill-ride with solid performances and great special effects. James Caan and Mandy Patinkin are excellent together with their unique and effective chemistry. One of the coolest sci-fi tales of the 80's decade with Terminator and Aliens.
    Al S Super Reviewer
  • Sep 17, 2010
    Graham Baker's engaging science fiction buddy-cop movie, is a very clever and entertaining motion picture. It concerns a massive saucer-shaped alien spaceship that lands in the California desert with some 300,000 genetically engineered extraterrestrial slave laborers abroad, with no way to leave. After a quarantine period, the humans who call them "Newcomers," allow the aliens to assimilate into American culture in southern California where they work, play and live along with humans. But because the Newcomers posses superior intelligence and near superhuman strength, there is a percentage of people in the human community who discriminate against them and call them "Slags." A bigoted, wise-cracking, old school LA Police Detective named Matthew Sykes, played marvelously by James Caan, watches his partner viciously gunned down by some Newcomer thugs during a store robbery, and vows to avenge him. Walled out of the investigation of his partner's murder directly, he elects to accept the first Newcomer detective, Samuel Francisco, played wonderfully by Mandy Patinkin, Sykes renames him George, and hopes that his new partner will uses his ties in the Newcomer community to lead to his partner's killer. It is not long before Sykes discovers that is partner's killing was part of a larger conspiracy involving a corrupt Newcomer official, William Harcourt, superbly played by Terence Stamp, and the distribution of a highly addictive drug that use to control the newcomers. A great concept, with lots of imaginative touches, but it's the chemistry between Caan & Patinkin that makes this movie work, and they are terrific together. Solid direction by Graham Baker, with impressive cinematography by Adam Greenberg. Followed by a TV series and three made-for-TV movies. Highly Recommended.
    Danny R Super Reviewer
  • Apr 06, 2009
    Pretty good movie that spawned a lousy tv show. i liked the storyline here and james caan was good.
    Lee K Super Reviewer

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