When the crew of the space tug Nostromo are awakened to answer a distress call, they find an organism that incubates inside a human host. The acid blooded alien lifeform proves to be the ultimate adversary and now the crew must fight for their lives and prevent this alien from reaching Earth. Unfortunately for the crew, the company they work for has other plans for them…and the newly discovered lifeform.
2019 (1979), 2160p with HDR 10, DTS HD Master Audio 5.1, rated R, 1 hour 56 minutes,
Starring: Sigourney Weaver, Tom Skerritt, Ian Holm, Harry Dean Stanton, Yaphet Koto, and John Hurt
Directed by: Ridley Scott
Has it been 40 years already? I remember watching this with my high school buddies at the local drive-in theater like it was just last year. This movie was the perfect foil to Star Wars, which had come out several months earlier, with its cute and cuddly creatures and space opera theme. Alien reminded us that space can be scary and wrought with danger! Of course, the Nostromo was basically a flying haunted house, but the claustrophobic effect it produced had the audience gasping for air. The creature was based on the works of the Swiss artist HR Giger, and it was like no other nightmarish creature we had ever dreamed of before. It was unstoppable and unrelenting, even when you thought the terror was over, it was not. The film has stood up well against the march of time, and this UHD re-master makes it look fresh and new. The sound could have been updated to Atmos, but the DTS soundtrack is very good and an update probably wouldn’t have added to the movie that much. (The Jerry Goldsmith music is still both stark and hauntingly beautiful). If you wonder if this release is better than the Blu-ray version, the answer is yes; the contrasts, depth and specular highlights of light glistening of the creature’s flesh, the purity of the brilliant whites and the solid rendition of color make it an easy pick. Details abound, and you can actually read most of the signage in the ships long, dank corridors. As good as the BD was, this takes the film up to a new level. Other than the dated computer monitors on the Nostromo, the movie looks like it was made recently.
As mentioned, Scott had the original film re-mastered in 4K and color corrected some trouble spots. The details really are quite sharp. I was afraid that some of the special effects would suffer, but they all look very good. How nice that this movie did not go crazy with CGI, like some of the latter Alien films. They looked cartoonish and horrible. I wish that this film had Dolby Vision, but I could find little to fault with HDR 10. Overall, this movie has never looked better.
Most of these are imported from the earlier release and include: Director’s Cut, Commentaries, Intro by Scott on the BD only, Final theatrical isolated score by Goldsmith and deleted and extended scenes. The BD is not mastered from the UHD restoration.