Monday, January 21, 2013

In space no one can hear you scream

SPOILER WARNING!!! This post spoils movie Alien. DISCLAIMER! I am not biologist. If reliable source says something else, believe it.

Alien is one of those movies almost everyone knows. I decided to watch whole series to know when Ripley become lieutenant. One of my Facebook friend mentioned that she was lieutenant and I started to wonder when did this happen. What is better way to find out than watch all four movies. Because movies are worth commenting I will post something about all of them. Currently I am not sure if all will got own post or if I combine last two.

Movie is best known for HR Gigers Alien design and chest burst scene. Alien design is pure HR Giger - dark, surreal and erotic if not kinky.  To get to more deeply to chest burst scene I go deeper into Alien biology. Phases of Alien are egg, facehugger, chestburster and adult alien. This kind of life cycle is not unheard in biology. Some species have more phases and more gruesome phases to host species than Alien. What is special to Alien is that it can use different host species. Normally species need specific host species and without host species, species itself dies. As I am not biologist I don't know if there are any species that can use more than one host specie.

Problem with Alien is facehugger phase. Facehugger keeps host alive while chestburster grows. Facehugger needs to know its hosts biology to be able to do that. There are species that can control host much more but in these cases it is specific host specie. Facehugger seems to be able to control all species. Or then it just try to control all species and we have only seen succesful attempts. With amount of eggs we have seen this could be the case. I haven't seen Prometheus yet. So I don't know if it has answers to this problem.

I am not saying that Alien is a bad movie. It is one of  my favourite horror movies and my favourite of Alien movies. All Alien movies have original and different kind of director. For me first one is most complete movie. Some may find slowness of this movie as weakness. For me it is realism. Sequels have more directors style in them and their greatness is based more on how you like directors style.


  1. You have an interesting point. I hate the face huggers, but never thought much about the biology of them.

    This was somewhat addressed in AVP, the Alien vs Predator movie. I know many alien fans discount AVP but I enjoyed it. They showed that the Predators had been bringing the Aliens to earth for millennia, so they are particularly adapted to humans. Not sure what would explain the dog in Alien3.

    Prometheus just completely confused things for me. The origin of the Aliens was explained, but it completely skipped the face hugger stage. Would love to hear what you think of it when you see it.

  2. This is what I think about Prometheus I may change my mind and watch it sooner. What I have heard, problems of Prometheus are realism problems and I like know what it brings to Alien storyline.

    AVP got few things wrong. In Predator movies Predators came to earth only when it was hot weather. In AVP that was forgotten. Lance Henriksen playing character named Charles Bishop Weyland didn't make much sense. In Alien 3 he was Michael Bishop, human who designed Bishop android. I don't know how much AVP movies are part of "official" Alien or predator storyline. First AVP is enjoyable if you forget what they got wrong.

  3. Well, I don't want to spoil Promethius if you do eventually plan to watch, but I can say it implies that the 'aliens' were created with a specific purpose and ties it back to humans, which makes no sense because in the first movie, humans stumbled upon them by accident. It really takes a completely different angle from the other movies, In my humble opinion. Still it is visually stunning and plenty tense and action packed.

  4. In this context what I write in Aliens post will make more sense. It will be published next monday. Now I have to watch Prometheus and write post about it. In Alien they followed beacon and found Alien there. It was not accident. Maybe all this makes sense in the end.