Friday, May 2, 2008


Welcome to a new feature here at the OH blog: CINOSTALGIA.

(Yeah, that's a horrible name but that's what I'm calling it until a better one is found. Deal with it.)

In case it wasn't implicit, CINEMA + NOSTALGIA = CINOSTALGIA. The purpose of this feature is to discuss movies that may have gotten lost in the annals of time and deserve reconsideration. Hopefully, these are also movies that hold up upon repeated viewings, unlike every crap summer blockbuster currently being shoved/marketed in my face destined to have a shelf life of a few weeks. Additionally, they need not be obscure films, just ones either overlooked or taken for granted for one reason or another.

Directed by Ridley Scott and released in 1979, Alien is by no means an obscure movie. However, it has been overshadowed by its flashier sequel Aliens, and its reputation has been sullied by by-products of diminishing quality like Alien Resurrection, and the pointless string of Alien v. Predator movies that have been cranked out in recent years.

Among the common critiques I hear in our current no-attention span society about movies like this are: "it's boring", "it's not scary", "the effects are lame", and "you never see the alien!". But just spend a few hours in the dark with this movie and I'm sure it will scare the pants off you. The fact that you barely get to see the alien makes it all the more terrifying.

Here's the fantastic iconic original trailer for the movie (from the great Trailer Addict):

(I don't know when movies started using "taglines" but, "In space no one can hear you scream" is the first one I remember, and it's a classic.)

This movie gives you a real sense of isolation and dread, something that slick new sci-fi movies don't spend enough time doing, so when the alien finally appears in the claustrophobic spaceship it's truly disturbing.

As I was planning to write up this entry, I noticed the Onion AV Club stole my idea. No matter, since it's a great movie and it's worth the CINOSTALGIA. (That name is growing on me.)

No comments: