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    Alien (1979)

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

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    After a space merchant vessel perceives an unknown transmission as a distress call, its landing on the source moon finds one of the crew attacked by a mysterious lifeform, and they soon realize that its life cycle has merely begun.


    Ridley Scott


    Dan O'Bannon (story), Ronald Shusett (story) | 1 more credit »
    276 ( 37)
    Top Rated Movies #52 | Won 1 Oscar. Another 16 wins & 20 nominations. See more awards »



    Learn more

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    Complete credited cast:
    Tom Skerritt ... Dallas
    Sigourney Weaver ... Ripley
    Veronica Cartwright ... Lambert
    Harry Dean Stanton ... Brett
    John Hurt ... Kane
    Ian Holm ... Ash
    Yaphet Kotto ... Parker
    Bolaji Badejo ... Alien
    Helen Horton ... Mother (voice)


    In the distant future, the crew of the commercial spaceship Nostromo are on their way home when they pick up a distress call from a distant moon. The crew are under obligation to investigate and the spaceship descends on the moon afterwards. After a rough landing, three crew members leave the spaceship to explore the area on the moon. At the same time as they discover a hive colony of some unknown creature, the ship's computer deciphers the message to be a warning, not a distress call. When one of the eggs is disturbed, the crew realizes that they are not alone on the spaceship and they must deal with the consequences. Written by blazesnakes9

    Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


    The Scariest Movie Ever Made. Experience it only on the big screen (USA 2003 re-release) See more »


    Horror | Sci-Fi

    Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

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

    Parents Guide:

    View content advisory »


    Official Sites:

    Official Facebook | Official site


    UK | USA



    Release Date:

    22 June 1979 (USA) See more »

    Also Known As:

    Alien: The Director's Cut See more »


    Box Office


    $11,000,000 (estimated)

    Opening Weekend USA:

    $3,527,881, 25 May 1979, Limited Release

    Gross USA:


    Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

    See more on IMDbPro »

    Company Credits

    Show more on IMDbPro »

    Technical Specs


    (1979 Theatrical Version) | (2003 Director's Cut)

    Sound Mix:

    70 mm 6-Track (70 mm prints)| Dolby (as Dolby Stereo)


    Color (Eastman Kodak)| Color

    Aspect Ratio:

    2.39 : 1
    See full technical specs »

    Did You Know?


    Roger Dicken, who designed and operated the facehugger and the chestburster, had originally wanted the latter to pull itself out of Kane's torso with its own little hands, a sequence he felt would have produced a much more horrifying effect than the gratuitous blood and guts in the release print. A chestburster with tiny arms pulling itself out would be seen in Aliens (1986). See more »


    Despite the humid temperatures of the ship during the detonation sequence, and the fact that Ripley is seen coated in sweat, including her nails, when she disrobes in the escape shuttle, there is no perspiration anywhere on her under garments, not even the armpits. See more »


    [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 »

    Crazy Credits

    The title of the movie is slowly created one line at a time at the top of the screen during the opening credits, starting out with the I, then the forward slash in A and the slash in N, and then the vertical lines in L and E (so it looks like / I I I \). After that, the ensuing lines of each letter are added slowly one at a time until the title is fully visible. See more »

    Alternate Versions

    Extra scenes in the 25th Anniversary Edition:
    • Lambert slapping Ripley in the face before being restrained by Parker and Brett outside the infirmary.
    • Brett's blood falling on Parker as he is carried off by the Alien into the heating ducts.
    • Ripley finding Brett and Dallas cocooned while trying to make it to the shuttle craft.
    • Kane pulls out and sets down a weapon of some kind while investigating the alien eggs.
    See more »


    Featured in To the Galaxy and Beyond with Mark Hamill (1997) See more »


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

    Frequently Asked Questions

    See more »

    User Reviews

    Structural perfection matched only by its hostility
    20 July 1999 | by oneshotstopSee all my reviews

    Director Ridley Scott's well-honed talents of pacing and editing create a tense atmosphere that superbly conveys dread and fear of an unknown, unseen evil entity. In 1979, the technology didn't exist to generate a computer image of a Being from another world, and thank God, because this film would have sucked just like all these post-Alien creature features do. Everyone who loves this movie knows what I'm talking about. Ridley Scott had to be extremely careful not to show a full shot of the Alien, except in very brief scenes, and not to reveal exactly how it moves, because then we would see that it is just some tall, skinny guy in a rubber suit. Nowadays, some computer guy would whip up a really scary-looking, but nevertheless FAKE-looking (yes, computer guys, we can tell) Alien, and the director would not have to even think about trying to breathe life into H.R. Giger's hallucinations to make a successful picture.

    The dark, cold beauty of this film will never be equaled.

    368 of 459 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
    Review this title | See all 1,294 user reviews »

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