Directed by: Ridley Scott
Starring: Tom Skerritt, Sigourney Weaver, Veronica Cartwright, Harry Dean Stanton, John Hurt, Ian Holm and Yaphet Kotto
Year of release: 1979
"HR Giger, whose "biomechanical" artwork lent 's film much of its terror,-" The Guardian 2014
The art within Alien done by the late HR Giger was astonishingly beautiful and has managed to stand the test of film time. Unlike most science fiction movies of the time Scott enlisted the aid of a surrealist painter to create the world for his alien and this became a breath taking success. unlike most concept artists of the time who seemed to have been inspired heavily by futurist art Gige decided to create a world more industrial.
This design choice made the world more believable as the member of the crew were not living in a super polished version of the modern world but were instead hired in a world that was seemingly more ruthless and militaristic than ever before.
"Giger deliberately gave the Xenomorph no obvious eyes as he thought it made the alien more frightening if you didn’t know where its looking." - What Culture, 2012
The design choices taken by Giger led to one of films most intimidating creatures and its deliberate lack of eyes gives the viewer an uneasy feeling as if cannot see with eyes that leads one to believe that it knows where it pray is by some heightened sense which would mean that it would have perfect or near perfect 360 degree 'sight', a thought almost as scary as the creature itself.
"This is most notable by the way the Xenomorph... penetrates it’s victim with it’s inner, phallic, secondary mouth which also has a second set of teeth and evokes ”vagina dentata” (a vagina with teeth)"The lack of a clear gender and the overall serpentine shape of the alien help put this creature right in the uncanny valley because the overall figure of the creature is humanoid but then add an elongated head and a very serpentine tail. These design choices where amazing and truly brought out the greatest amount of fear in the viewing audience.
Figure 1: Poster, https://fanart.tv/fanart/movies/348/movieposter/alien-527cde786d68c.jpg
Figure 2: Concept art, http://monstersandrobots.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/05/hr-giger-alienderelictcockpit-550x401.jpg
Figure 3: Concept art, http://static.rogerebert.com/redactor_assets/pictures/53725810d918f494a100001a/alien-space-jockey-hr-giger.jpg
Figure 4: Concept art, http://www.museumsyndicate.com/images/3/21000.jpg
Figure 5: Snake, http://www.snakecatchers.com.au/images/Snakes/Small-eyed(1).jpg
(Roger Ebert, 2003) http://www.rogerebert.com/reviews/great-movie-alien-1979(What Culture, 2012) http://whatculture.com/film/h-r-gigers-alien-a-brief-history-of-the-man-and-the-monster.php
(What Culture, 2012) http://whatculture.com/film/h-r-gigers-alien-a-brief-history-of-the-man-and-the-monster.php