Probably the greatest contribution Alien made, even more so than Giger's terrifying alien creature, is it's de-glorification of space travel. By presenting the Nostromo crew as working class grunts, the film brings space down to a gritty, more relatable level. And it is that sliver of familiarity that makes the ensuing events all the more terrifying.
Ridlley Scott is a world-class master in the science of art and editing. Here he creates an atmosphere by fear and pace of an unseen and unknown evil. He sends us to a forbidden place for humans alone and adapts the most unpleasent creature for the crew which at some time knows it's expendable and the most important thing is bringing back alien life-form. But, it's not overall greatness.
A master study in cinematic space and atmosphere. The suspense and ominous feeling of anticipating the encounter build throughout the entire film. Jerry Goldsmith's score is enthralling, and the heart-beat-like thumping is inescapable. Science fiction horror doesn't get any better than this.
A masterclass in suspense and a beauty in design. The futuristic aesthetics remain fresh and claustrophobic as the first day. Ridley Scott sends shivers down the spine with the horror and methodical devastation along the corridors of the Nostromo. But what might elevate this film onto the Olympus of cinema is Sigourney Weaver's final solo against the alien, a danse macabre charged with sexuality and primal fear.