Ridley Scott’s “Alien” is a perfect horror film. Even with some dated modeling and FX work the film is still possessed of electric tension and unparalleled originality.
A commercial towing vessel, the USCSS Nostromo, is pulling a factory platform in deep space when the crew is awakened to answer a distress call from a nearby planet. The signal proves to be from a dead ship which is host to a parasitic beast. The acanthoid monstrosity fiendishly stows away on the Nostromo and proceeds to stalk the helpless 7 person crew through the steamy bowels of the refinery.
This film boasts the best cast in horror film history and immerses them in some of the greatest production design ever seen. H.R. Giger’s work on the creature and the galactic environments is mystifying, disturbingly erotic and horrifying. If Scott hadn’t gone on to reinvent Noir in Sci-Fi form 3 years later with “Blade Runner” we might well be seeing “Alien” on AFI’s list of the 100 greatest films of all time.