Lonesome Engineering: Constructing Tension in ‘Alien’

By  · Published on October 19th, 2017

The desolation of space is the perfect breeding ground for existential crises.

Alien is as much a film series about the terrors of engineering as it is about the follies of man’s exploration into the natural world. The robotic betrayals and dangers wrought by humanity rival those of the aliens, but the metallic cages of the series’ space transportation are just as damning.

Traveling through space in a giant, lifeless tin can strips you of your soul as quickly as a xenomorph can strip you of your skin.

Julian Palmer’s video essay looks into the constructed tension and sadness underlying Ridley Scott’s original film, all leading up to a chestbursting climax after humanity’s own engineering abilities have cast a crew into crisis.

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Jacob Oller writes everywhere (Vanity Fair, The Guardian, Playboy, FSR, Paste, etc.) about everything that matters (film, TV, video games, memes, life).