Tuesday, 10 November 2009

Alien 'Ridley Scott'

Now…..if you’ve been reading my blog, you’ll probably no I’ve got quite a passion for H.R Giger’s work, and after watching ‘Alien’ at a young age, this probably might have something to do with it, but I’m going to try and retain myself on this one and just talk about some of the main elements, as opposed to a stupidly long essay…

















As one of the first most recognised films to use an actual artist to help with the concept behind a film, as well as other concept artists, breathing in to it a more stylised and artistic approach to a generic horror film, it’s easy to say this immediately changed the direction it otherwise would have headed in…
With the film challenging how we today perceive film and easily disconnect our self’s from it because of that, it enters a more ‘life-like’ approach, for example when the characters lines overlay one another, in comparison to the monotonous gap between each characters dialogue…as well as this the set itself, even though it’s made to represent how the future may look, it still feels incredibly contemporary, for instance, although the set is in space, it has a very industrial, oil rig type feel to it, with the dark, murky colours, and the chunky machinery that can be seen today, this in itself portrays that sense of realism, juxtaposing other films/series with the same context, i.e. Star Trek, with it’s pastel colouring, and high-tech lighting and cleanliness…














Within the first 5 minutes of this film, it’s easy to see that the director pays attention to detail, with the amazing amount of prop work you just wouldn’t find as much in today’s industry with advancements in CG…and it’s interesting to see the comparison of Ron Cobb’s Nostromo’s , to H.R Giger’s Spacecraft, which completely disconnect from one another, as though two separate worlds, as the introduction of Giger’s ‘Freudian’ aesthetics take over, beginning with the phallic, skin-toned exterior, contrasting against it’s dark, sleek, sexual interior, that closely resembles skeletal elements, at the centre the dubbed ‘Space Jockey’ the phallic machinery direction towards the corpses face, as though about to enter, even towards the end with the whole aspect of Ripley in her under wear, which caused a mini uproar to the whole portrayal of her strong character, giving in to the want of man, as well as other elements, for instance, there are a lot of wonderful shots of open doorways, with a certain character standing in a certain way, which has been known to give off similar sexual connotations…


















That aside, the special effect’s in this film, as well as most of the franchise are great, with it’s use of Animatronics, the big, robust figures, it still feels contemporary, and in my honest opinion, I believe it’s because they aren’t digitally produced, that they have ’dated’ with time and technology , which just goes to show that perhaps ‘subtlety ’ isn’t always key for example the classic ‘Chest-Bursting‘ scene, that is still, and probably well be for years to come a horrific but landmark convention…With the colour aspect of the film, I must say I fell in love with the murky, stained dripping oil effect, it relays an effect of life, and how imperfect things are…as well as the whole, ‘Good = White, Bad = Black, which can be seen at the end with the stand of between Ripley in here Astrosuit, and the Alien, which is quite a generic use of colour, but again, it works…Along with the use of lighting, which creates a great sense of suspense, the strong use of silhouetting, this in itself contributes to capturing the horror of the film, for instance, the first killing on the ship, the whole scene just looked ominous(but also quite pleasing) because of this, as well as the final chase scene, when Ripley runs into the Alien in the corridor, with the flickering light on her face, along with the short bursts of smoke, truly terrifying…














On a last note, the film itself to me, is the stuff of legend, and is a must watch…..Do it..

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