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259. Alien – Halloween 2021 (#52)

Hosted by Andrew Quinn and Darren Mooney, and this week with special guests Doctor Bernice Murphy and Joey Keogh, The 250 is a weekly trip through some of the best (and worst) movies ever made, as voted for by Internet Movie Database Users. New episodes are released Saturdays at 6pm GMT.

So this week, a Halloween treat: Ridley Scott’s Alien.

A mysterious signal from deep space awakens the crew of the shipping vessel Nostromo. Following standing orders to respond, the crew find themselves drawn to a hostile and barren world. They track the signal to the wreckage of a strange and mysterious craft. However, there might just be something sinister stirring deep within that wreckage.

At time of recording, it was ranked 52nd on the list of the best movies of all time on the Internet Movie Database.

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New Escapist Column! On David as the Monster in “Prometheus” and “Alien: Covenant”…

I published a new piece at Escapist Magazine this evening. This week, Ridley Scott explained that he wanted to “re-evolve” the central monster from the Alien franchise.

This is an interesting argument, particularly given Scott’s long-standing criticism about the xenomorph, and his argument that the creature has perhaps outlived its relevance. Indeed, one of the most interesting facets of Prometheus and Alien: Covenant is the way in which David essentially updates many of the core thematic elements of the xenomorph. David takes the creature’s threat of sexual violence, and updates it for the twenty-first century.

You can read the piece here, or click the picture below.

Non-Review Review: Alien

I had the pleasure of attending of the Jameson Cult Film Club’s screening of Ridley Scott’s 1979 Alien. It was a great evening for all concerned, and it was great to see a classic film like that projected on a huge screen, blasted out of a superb sound system. The screening seemed to coincide with the build-up to the release of next year’s Prometheus, a sci-fi thriller from Ridley Scott with “strands of Alien DNA”, but Scott’s film is one of those rare pieces of cinema that continues to give, even thirty years after the original release. It’s rare to point to a film that seems to offer new nuance and depth on each viewing, especially within the horror genre. Alien is a movie that’s absolutely fascinating in its complexity.

A bad egg…

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Non-Review Review: Alien³

Alien³ is generally regarded as an inferior Alien film, and the start of a slippery slope that would lead us through Alien: Resurrection into Aliens vs. Predator and even Aliens vs. Predator: Requiem. It’s also regarded as something of a hiccup in the career of David Fincher, and an example of how meddling from greedy corporate executives can potential derail the rise of a young talent. That’s a lot of pressure for a single film to carry – particularly one which has enough trouble standing on its own two feet. However, I am quite fond of this particular incarnation of the franchise. Not enough to call it a “classic” or even “great”, but enough to argue that it was a relatively brave and ultimately valid experiment for the franchise – much more so, arguably, than the fourth film.

It’s an emotional reunion, to say the least…

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