Tuesday, 26 October 2010

The One Where I Scream Like A Girl (In Space)

I love Blu Ray.

I love that I got Iron Man 2 yesterday, (while Mrs T was poorly sick - and too weak to say, "Err... Isn't Alien Anthology and Back To The Future Set enough for one day??"). I love that that will look even better than it did at the cinema, and rock my 7.1 - shaking them, like the pillars of heaven.

What I love most though, is discovering an old film. Say, one that's 30 years old.

Because in all honesty, if they do it properly, it's like seeing a brand new film.

I had that experience last night...

My Dad will tell you that Alien was in his top ten. And that  it's better than Aliens (which I'll review on Grays Blog, tonight, as we return to our swapsie Tuesday).

Lets just say after this, I'd struggle to disagree as much as I normally would.

Alien is undeniably a masterpiece.

What Blu Ray will do is lend it to another generation.

I could go on and on about how disappointed they will be that nothing happens in the first half hour. About how they guess that one of the crew is a traitor. That the lack of gore when the Alien finally starts doing its thing leaves them hollow, and empty.

I won't though.

Instead I want to focus on how the sub went mental with all of the exterior shots of Nostromo. How the sound was perfect.

The scene where the crew leave to discover the abandoned (?) ship really hit me. I had always got that they were walking in some sort of storm. Here though, it hits with a bang. The detail is a slurry of rain/sleet/snow - and it's like a new scene. There is a sense of danger that before I always thought was just suggested. It turns out that it was there all along. We just couldn't see it.

Before that, as the title cards fade (perfect as ever - I always forget the "A" and "E" forge at the same time - love it) - we get inside the ship. And immediately you realise this has been lovingly touched up. (That sounded wrong). The detail on the ship, and long hallways aren't as dark as they were before. Here, we can see every once of detail on the frames. It looks like a ship - like you actually believe it. There is no question it is a film set.

The computers look bright green, which is brilliant. It would have looked so dated to see them as they once looked. The colour shift means you don't question the graphics on them, though - even the weird Commodore 64 bit where they land on the planet. It all just looks real. You could be watching a documentary.

There are highlights - the chest burster is brilliantly realised - and I finally got that a lot of the crew didn't know what was coming. They look mortified!

Then finally, in a last fifteen minutes with little to no dialogue, we get the bit that will test the patience of modern audiences.

It still got a jump out of me, though. (Stop laughing. I thought the head would move, not the arm!). And the strobe effects now look brilliant - again, adding vital colour to a very dark scene.

I accidentally set the MU-TH-ER mode off whilst watching - which archives all of the movies bonus documentaries and deleted scenes etc. It's awesome. Literally bigger than life. But it's reassuring to know it's there. In case I ever have 65 hours to scour the extras.

I paid less than £30 for this set. I would have paid that for Alien alone, on this basis. As it is though... I'm about to go back to LV426 57 years later... with frickin' space marines.

It's a classic - and it looks, and sounds, better than ever here.

Thank God Ridley Scott hasn't sold out with a prequel. Or two. In 3-D.

Thank God he doesn't spend 1 1/2 pages of his 2 page intro talking about that. About revisiting LV426, and what went before. Where another breed of Alien is trying to mate the Space Jockeys Kane and his team here. Until they release their sex slaves are both Men... Thank God...

Oh. FFS. Damn you Fox. Damn you all to Hell!

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