Talk:Alien (film)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Good article Alien (film) has been listed as one of the Media and drama good articles under the good article criteria. If you can improve it further, please do so. If it no longer meets these criteria, you can reassess it.
          This article is of interest to the following WikiProjects:
WikiProject Alien (Rated GA-class, Top-importance)
WikiProject icon This article is within the scope of WikiProject Alien, a collaborative effort to improve the coverage of the Alien and Predator science fiction franchises on Wikipedia. If you would like to participate, please visit the project page, where you can join the discussion and see a list of open tasks.
 GA  This article has been rated as GA-Class on the project's quality scale.
 Top  This article has been rated as Top-importance on the project's importance scale.
 
WikiProject Film (Rated GA-class)
WikiProject icon This article is within the scope of WikiProject Film. If you would like to participate, please visit the project page, where you can join the discussion and see lists of open tasks and regional and topical task forces. To use this banner, please refer to the documentation. To improve this article, please refer to the guidelines.
 GA  This article has been rated as GA-Class on the project's quality scale.
Taskforce icon
This article is on the project's core list.
Taskforce icon
This article is supported by the American cinema task force.
Taskforce icon
This article is supported by the British cinema task force.
 
WikiProject Horror (Rated GA-class, High-importance)
WikiProject icon This article is within the scope of WikiProject Horror, an attempt to build a comprehensive and detailed guide to fictional horror in film, literature and other media on Wikipedia. If you would like to participate, you can edit one of the articles mentioned below, or visit the project page, where you can join the project and contribute to the general Project discussion to talk over new ideas and suggestions.
 GA  This article has been rated as GA-Class on the project's quality scale.
 High  This article has been rated as High-importance on the project's importance scale.
 
WikiProject Science Fiction (Rated GA-class, High-importance)
WikiProject icon This article is within the scope of WikiProject Science Fiction, a collaborative effort to improve the coverage of science fiction on Wikipedia. If you would like to participate, please visit the project page, where you can join the discussion and see a list of open tasks.
 GA  This article has been rated as GA-Class on the project's quality scale.
 High  This article has been rated as High-importance on the project's importance scale.
 
WikiProject United States / American Cinema (Rated GA-class, Low-importance)
WikiProject icon This article is within the scope of WikiProject United States, a collaborative effort to improve the coverage of topics relating to the United States of America on Wikipedia. If you would like to participate, please visit the project page, where you can join the ongoing discussions.
 GA  This article has been rated as GA-Class on the project's quality scale.
 Low  This article has been rated as Low-importance on the project's importance scale.
Taskforce icon
This article is supported by WikiProject Film - American cinema task force (marked as Low-importance).
 
WikiProject Library of Congress (Rated GA-class, Low-importance)
WikiProject icon This article is within the scope of WikiProject Library of Congress, a collaborative effort to improve the coverage of the Library of Congress on Wikipedia. If you would like to participate, please visit the project page, where you can join the discussion and see a list of open tasks.
 GA  This article has been rated as GA-Class on the quality scale.
 Low  This article has been rated as Low-importance on the importance scale.
 

Box-office[edit]

Many different websites have conflicting numbers for the international box office, but I'm pretty sure box-office mojo is way wrong with the 24 million dollars foreign box office estimate. The article says it earned almost 8 million pounds in the UK, which is approximately 12 million dollars (btw, box office mojo only counts a 114 000 dollars box office for the UK, that's where they got it wrong, they probably only counted the revenue from the premiere at the Odeon Leicester Square). So if you add up the revenues from box office mojo, and give the UK its 12 million dollars, or even if you give it 8 million dollars (and not pounds, like it says on IMDB), Alien surpasses the 24 million dollar estimate in foreign revenue.

Now, IMDB does give it a more believable foreign estimate of about 104 million (though it does count the 2003 release of the director's cut, but it wasn't that successful). The Numbers actually gives it a 122 million dollar foreign estimate, also probably counting the director's cut release. Regardless, the Box Office Mojo is almost certainly wrong, and that website is often wrong with its additions of foreign revenues, especially for "old" movies.. (same goes for Aliens btw).--Munin75 (talk) 07:12, 1 July 2012 (UTC)

I'm inclined to agree; there is a tendency to treat BOM like the bible on here, but it does get a lot of historical data wrong, by either being incomplete or by mixing up gross and theatrical rental earnings. I don't think either BOM or The Numbers are correct in this case. Other sources such as [1] and [2] put its worldwide gross at $165 million by 2000. When you factor in the $5 million from the Director's Cut that would take the total to $170 million. During the 70s and 80s a big Hollywood film would traditionally add 50–100% of its domestic total overseas, which would put Alien's gross in the $120–160 million. The book figure is closer to that range. Obviously we can't know for sure, but I think we should probably do what we do with conflicting budget estimates and have an approximation range i.e. $104—170 million. Betty Logan (talk) 02:32, 4 July 2012 (UTC)
The $104 million figure as quoted by BOM is obviously inaccurate, as the film had made $80m in the US, and the equivalent of around $18m during its first UK run in 1979/80 (pound sterling to dollar exchange rate back then was between $2.06 and $2.40). It's highly doubtful a film of this magnitude only made a further $6 million everywhere else in the world. The Numbers.com, which is no more or less reliable as BOM, states that Alien took $122m internationally, which is a far more believable figure than $24m. However, I've done what Betty suggested above and included both figures so we have a range for the worldwide gross, as this would be the most encyclopedic thing to do. Particled (talk) 02:12, 12 September 2013 (UTC)

Plot[edit]

The alien is not "hiding" aboard the shuttle it is sleeping. Hench Ripley yells "Wake up you son of a bitch!"

I've added a small piece of info on the location in space, where the story takes place. The planet Calpamos and the moon LV-426 are fictional, but the rest is real. Stringence (talk) 22:19, 26 August 2012 (UTC)

No thanks. This is minor, trivial, and doesn't need to be in the plot summary. The whole think is fictitious, including the setting. The "Spaceships and planets" section already says "In Alien the planetoid is said to be located somewhere in the Zeta2 Reticuli system", so readers can click on the link if they want to learn more about Zeta Reticuli. --IllaZilla (talk) 01:26, 27 August 2012 (UTC)
This information on location in our universe is vital for the story. This is the only way for readers to know that this star system is genuine, exists in real life. It gives orienation in space, relative to us, so everybody has chance to deepen their interest. I'm an astronomer, and correct koordinates allwas greately enhance the story. It becomes more realistic this way. So I urge you to put this information in, It was after all part in the movies script. To know how damned close it is to us, gives an extra nice frightening twist and enhances the the story. Stringence (talk) 02:21, 2 October 2012 (UTC)
It's hardly vital; unless you spend an inordinate amount of time discussing how "close" the setting is to earth, it's not going to mean anything to most people. Space is space and is rarely put into context spatially. Devoting enough effort to the location to make it worthwhile to a reader would require us spending 10 times as much effort explaining it as the film does briefly flashing it on-screen. GRAPPLE X 02:34, 2 October 2012 (UTC)
I agree with Grapple X. The particular point in space at which the planetoid lies is irrelevant to the story, and even less relevant to a summary of the events of the plot. It's minor, trivial, barely mentioned in the film itself, and does not bear going into minute detail about within a plot summary. As I mentioned previously, it's already covered within the "Spaceships and planets" section. --IllaZilla (talk) 03:44, 2 October 2012 (UTC)
Space should always be put into context spatially. It´s not, and therefore people remain desoriented. In my sentence everything that needed explaining was explaned. You also know the SCENE of a plot is always as important, as the plot itself. That´s why I posted this information in the Plot-section. Where it goes is of minor importance, as long as it all is present. As a scientist I say only referring to the star system in section "Spaceships and planets" isn´t enough. But if you wish to disrespect people by saying they aren't integllient enough och interested enough to appreciate spatial context, there isn't much I can do. And who cares about your workload? Your job is to further knowledge, not stop it. Stringence (talk) 09:18, 2 October 2012 (UTC)
Seems excessive for an otherwise snappy plot summary. If the distance from Earth is a significant part of the film's setting, and is clearly presented to the audience, then it wouldn't hurt to mention that in passing - a ship having trouble a few days away from home would give a very different atmosphere to one that was many years out. But if we're just talking about a character delivering one line of astronomical trivia with no context for the general audience (and in a line which may well have just been randomly-chosen technobabble), we shouldn't be presenting it as an intentional part of the plot. --McGeddon (talk) 09:39, 2 October 2012 (UTC)
Correctly describing where this story takes place is not trivia, my remark isn't about distance. It's about where in the sky the story takes place, use the opportunity/interest of this film to teach readers a few interesting and real facts. I'm a scholar and see things through educational eyes. Again, I'm sadly faced with ignorent Wiki-administrators, and I'm beginning to understand why all scientists deeply detest Wikipedia with it´s dis- and misinformation. Shape up! Stringence (talk) 14:45, 2 October 2012 (UTC)
We're certainly not trying to "disinform" people. It's just that the precise location in space and distance from Earth isn't very pertinent to a summary of the plot. The aim of a plot summary is to give "an overview of the film's main events, avoiding minutiae like dialogue, scene-by-scene breakdowns, and technical detail." The planetoid could be 39 lights years from Earth or 15 or 100, and it would make no difference to the events of the story. Calling us "ignorent Wiki-administrators" isn't very polite (nor is it accurate; none of us in this discussion are admins), and doesn't aid your argument any. --IllaZilla (talk) 14:54, 2 October 2012 (UTC)
I concur with IllaZilla about what goes in the plot summary. The summary is intended to be an overview of the film so readers can understand the rest of the article. More specific details can go elsewhere in the article body, if they have been discussed in reliable sources. Erik (talk | contribs) 15:08, 2 October 2012 (UTC)
Then why didn't you move the information somewhere else you thought appropriate/suitable? You chose to completely delete it, with the argument it´s minor or trivial. Again, my purpose is only to use the opportunity/interest of this film to teach readers a few interesting and real facts. That´s all. I give up, there´s no point arguing. Stringence (talk) 15:15, 2 October 2012 (UTC)
As was pointed out in response to your first comment here, the "Spaceships and planets" section already states that "In Alien the planetoid is said to be located somewhere in the Zeta2 Reticuli system", with a link to the article for the benefit of any interested reader. --McGeddon (talk) 15:25, 2 October 2012 (UTC)

Alien Legacy[edit]

There seems to be an issue with what was included in the Alien Legacy DVD box set, released in 1999. I bought the box set the day it first came out and it contained all four Alien films. There were no previous releases of the Alien Legacy DVD set that ever only had three films in it. There is no mention of it ever only containing the first three films anywhere on the net (not even on eBay), but there are plenty of reviews and press notices which clearly state it was a 4-disc set from its first release in 1999. [3], [4], [5], [6], [7], [8], etc. 88.104.21.45 (talk) 01:07, 28 September 2012 (UTC)

Thanks for including a ref in the edit this time. That was all we needed to leave the content in. I know it gets frustrating when you know something is true but reliable sources aren't backing it up, but at least there were plenty of sources to pull from based on your list above. Nice work and happy editing! Millahnna (talk) 01:11, 28 September 2012 (UTC)
It suddenly occurs to me we should double check the text in the other films' articles to make sure it reflects the change with the new source. Millahnna (talk) 01:13, 28 September 2012 (UTC)
Here are the relevant quotes from McIntee:
"The film was released on both VHS and Betamax for rental, and has been sold in several VHS releases, both singly and as boxed sets. It was also released on both Laserdisc and Videodisc before DVD became standard. The original DVD release, also available in the 'Alien Legacy' boxed set, featured a commentary by Ridley Scott, which is different from the commentary on the more recent 'Quadrilogy' edition." (p. 39)
"All the films have been released on VHS and DVD. Alien and Aliens were also released on Betamax, and Alien, Aliens, and Alien 3 on laserdisc. There have been several boxed sets: Alien, Aliens, and Alien 3 came out in a face-hugger shaped box, which included some of the deleted scenes from the laserdisc editions, and postcards. When Alien Resurrection came out at cinemas, the first three movies were released in a VHS boxed set with a Making of Alien Resurrection tape. A few months later, the same set was re-released with Alien Resurrection itself replacing the making-of video. This set was available in both widescreen and pan-and-scan versions. The most recent boxed set has been the 'Quadrilogy' nine-disc DVD set, which is a must-buy for fans." (p. 259)
My question is whether the VHS boxed set referred to (first released with the making-of vid, later replaced by Resurrection) is the Alien Legacy set, or if it had a different title (or not title at all). --IllaZilla (talk) 02:28, 28 September 2012 (UTC)
This sounds like the Alien Saga VHS box set which was released in the UK in late 1997 and had the first three films plus the "Making of Resurrection" tape (see here). In 1998, it was reissued (still only on VHS) with the Resurrection film in it. It was never released on DVD. The Alien Legacy set was a different VHS and DVD box set from 1999 and always had four films in it. This was the very first Alien box set on DVD. Particled (talk) 03:51, 28 September 2012 (UTC)

One sided accounts of sexual imagery[edit]

The article never says what the film makers made of the supposed phallic imagery and topic of the movie. Critics and academic analysts tend to say things out of pure shock value to stimulate attention. The article is not balanced when it touches on the subject, and never once refers to an opinion in the other direction, or potential confirmation. --IronMaidenRocks (talk) 04:18, 11 November 2012 (UTC)

Did you read the whole section?
  • O'Bannon himself later described the sexual imagery in Alien as overt and intentional: "One thing that people are all disturbed about is sex... I said 'That's how I'm going to attack the audience; I'm going to attack them sexually. And I'm not going to go after the women in the audience, I'm going to attack the men. I am going to put in every image I can think of to make the men in the audience cross their legs. Homosexual oral rape, birth. The thing lays its eggs down your throat, the whole number.'"[112]
O'Bannon wrote the script, so I think that counts. The sexual imagery in Alien is one of the aspects frequently noted by analysts and critics. I'm not sure what you mean about "referring to an opinion in the other direction"...do you mean finding a critic who explicitly says there are no sexual undertones in the film? Because I highly doubt that's possible. That's trying to prove a negative. There is some previous discussion of this at Talk:Alien (film)/Archive 3#Alien's sexual imagery.
Note that there are other mentions of the film's sexual imagery to be found in other sections of the article as well, such as Roger Ebert's remarks in the section "The Alien" ("It is unmistakably phallic in shape, and the critic Tim Dirks mentions its 'open, dripping vaginal mouth.'"), Veronica Cartwright's comments in "Set design and filming" (Veronica Cartwright described Giger's sets as "so erotic...it's big vaginas and penises...the whole thing is like you're going inside of some sort of womb or whatever...it's sort of visceral".), and David Edelstein's remarks in "Lasting critical praise" ("Alien remains the key text in the “body horror” subgenre that flowered (or, depending on your viewpoint, festered) in the seventies, and Giger’s designs covered all possible avenues of anxiety. Men traveled through vulva-like openings, got forcibly impregnated, and died giving birth to rampaging gooey vaginas dentate — how’s that for future shock? This was truly what David Cronenberg would call “the new flesh,” a dissolution of the boundaries between man and machine, machine and alien, and man and alien, with a psychosexual invasiveness that has never, thank God, been equaled."). Is that enough for you? --IllaZilla (talk) 07:25, 11 November 2012 (UTC)
I tend to agree with IllaZilla here. Neutrality generally applies to debates and disputed interpretations, but no such quandary exists in this case. There seems to be a universal consensus that the imagery is overtly sexual. The section is mainly reliant on critics and analysts because these are the people who sit down and write about the film. Some filmmakers—Stanley Kubrick for instance—refuse to get drawn on interpreting their work. If we can get some production info on the background to the imagery that is great, but it isn't a prerequisite. Betty Logan (talk) 07:54, 11 November 2012 (UTC)
My scanning through the article didn't pick up on the fact that O'Bannon was the writer, and not a critic. I was directed here from an article on an Alien Wiki, which I assumed was a copy of this word-for-word. Obviously I was wrong. Sorry about that. --IronMaidenRocks (talk) 06:07, 12 November 2012 (UTC)
Giger himself acknowledges the sexualized nature of the Alien creature in his production diaries, many of which have been published under the title of Giger's Alien. Here is a sample from page 46: "I changed [O'Bannon's sketch for the Alien egg] to look like an organic, vagina-like opening. When I take off the plastic cloths in which my work is draped, there is a howl of laughter from the whole group. I had lovingly endowed this egg with an inner and outer vulva." The production team then asked Giger to make the eggs less "specific"--more like a flower--so that the film will not get in trouble in "Catholic countries" (46). DrX (talk) 20:36, 7 December 2013 (UTC)
Just as a side note, the Alien creature's lips were made out of condoms and the "goo" it salivates is a concoction based on KY jelly. I am pretty sure I can find the "hard" (excuse the pun) sources for this . . . somewhere around here. HullIntegrity (talk)

Error in Alien article[edit]

I don't know who's been writing these entries but the article entry for "Alien" states that "three sequel and three prequel films" have been made. Uh, this is factually incorrect. To date only "Alien", "Aliens", "Alien 3" and "Alien Resurrection" has been produced. While "Prometheus" has been produced, it's not considered an official prequel for the simple fact that Ridley Scott has went on record as saying that the movie Prometheus delves into a different aspect and that it will only be connected to the Alien films in a very minor aspect.

The article need to be updated and references to three prequel films removed. Being technical about it, only one prequel film has been produced with no word on whether any additional films would be forthcoming. It's disengenuous to mention films that haven't even been greenlit, yet alone, officially announced by 20th Century Fox. Since Prometheus bombed at the box office, it's highly doubtful that any further films will be forthcoming for a long time to come.

98.209.246.195 (talk) 03:14, 12 July 2013 (UTC)

I have removed some unsourced and out-of-place content. Thanks. --Musdan77 (talk) 19:54, 12 July 2013 (UTC)
For all intents and purposes, Prometheus is a prequel to Alien, and 20th Century Fox consider it to be such (its now even included in boxed sets with the Alien films). They're the owners of the property and they say what goes. It's also disingenuous to call it a "flop" when it made over $400 million worldwide and plans for a sequel have indeed been announced. Particled (talk) 02:50, 12 September 2013 (UTC)
What about the two (poor) Alien vs Predator films? — Preceding unsigned comment added by 194.176.105.154 (talk) 14:48, 19 June 2014 (UTC)
See Alien (film)#Sequels --Musdan77 (talk) 01:37, 21 June 2014 (UTC)

Influence on Futurama[edit]

I just saw an episode called "Murder on the Planet Express" of Futurama. In it, it seems like an uninvited parasite is eating the crew. Two characters have to go through the ventilation system to find it, just like the character Dallas did. So the episode title may reference Agatha Christie, but I'm sure this was inspired by Alien. jcm 12/7/13 — Preceding unsigned comment added by Chumley41 (talkcontribs) 10:02, 7 December 2013 (UTC)

It might refer to both. If there is a reliable source for the information, it might belong in the article on the Futurama episode. With or without a source, including it here would be trivial. Please see WP:IPC. - SummerPhD (talk) 18:02, 7 December 2013 (UTC)