Alien (1979) - Rotten Tomatoes

Alien (1979)

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Critic Consensus: A modern classic, Alien blends science fiction, horror and bleak poetry into a seamless whole.

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"In space, no one can hear you scream." A close encounter of the third kind becomes a Jaws-style nightmare when an alien invades a spacecraft in Ridley Scott's sci-fi horror classic. On the way home from a mission for the Company, the Nostromo's crew is woken up from hibernation by the ship's Mother computer to answer a distress signal from a nearby planet. Capt. Dallas's (Tom Skerritt) rescue team discovers a bizarre pod field, but things get even stranger when a face-hugging creature bursts out of a pod and attaches itself to Kane (John Hurt). Over the objections of Ripley (Sigourney Weaver), science officer Ash (Ian Holm) lets Kane back on the ship. The acid-blooded incubus detaches itself from an apparently recovered Kane, but an alien erupts from Kane's stomach and escapes. The alien starts stalking the humans, pitting Dallas and his crew (and cat) against a malevolent killing machine that also has a protector in the nefarious Company. ~ Lucia Bozzola, Rovi

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Critic Reviews for Alien

All Critics (104) | Top Critics (23)

This is a screamingly spooky sci-fi tale with more than a few echoes of "The Thing" but echoes which enhance rather than detract.

May 25, 2016 | Rating: 3.5/4 | Full Review…

Seen again a quarter-century later, we marvel at how the filmmaker generates so much tension and sweat with a bare minimum of moving parts.

June 30, 2015 | Rating: 4/4 | Full Review…

The limited strengths of its staple sci-fi horrors always derived from either the offhand organic/ Freudian resonances of its design or the purely (brilliantly) manipulative editing and pacing of its above-average shock quota.

November 17, 2011 | Rating: 5/5 | Full Review…

The most startling thing watching Alien again is its pacing. For the first 45 minutes, little happens. It's all slow, exquisite build-up, which makes the second half seem all the more horrific.

October 28, 2011 | Rating: 4/4 | Full Review…

It is depressing to watch an expensive, crafty movie that never soars beyond its cold desire to score the big bucks.

October 22, 2010 | Full Review…

The limited strengths of its staple sci-fi horrors always derived from either the offhand organic/ Freudian resonances of its design or the purely (brilliantly) manipulative editing and pacing of its above-average shock quota.

August 16, 2007 | Full Review…
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Audience Reviews for Alien

½

It is a slasher flick...IN SPACE! The visuals are gorgeous, the ship has a slight Kubrick design but with an extra gritty edge. The alien creature is one of the most iconic movie monsters for its unusual buggish look and sliminess. The creature is constantly in the shadows, giving a paranoid sense as to when it will come out and strike. The cast is very strong, Sigourney Weaver makes her character Ripley tough, sympathetic, and believable. This is the definitive sci-fi horror classic.

Christopher Heim
Christopher Heim

Super Reviewer

½

A fantastic blend of sci-fi and horror, incredibly suspenseful and carefully elaborated with a perfect pacing. Scott knows very well how to slowly build a disquieting tension and elevate it to the point of nerve-wracking, and this film is a genuinely scary modern classic.

Carlos Magalhães
Carlos Magalhães

Super Reviewer

A classic.

Wildaly M
Wildaly M

Super Reviewer

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