A space mining outfit on their way home to Earth is woken out of a deep sleep by an SOS message. They are required to respond, so they change their course for a distant planet. When they arrive, they move down to the planet's surface to discover the source of the beacon. They discover some exotic, abandoned alien spaceship, and an enormous, ancient corpse of a creature with its chest bursted out. Deep within the spaceship, they discover an alien's nest. When one scientist examines an egg, it opens up, and the creature inside attacks him. It attaches itself to his face, and becomes unremovable. The other two crewmen manage to get him back to the ship but Ripley the ship's second officer in command doesn't want them to bring him aboard because of possible contamination. But Ash, the Medical Officer, opens the doors anyway, and lets the victim in. They put him in the infirmary, and learn that the hatchling is controlling his breathing patterns. After a while, the hatchling detaches itself.

Before going back into cryonic sleep, the crew decides to celebrate the recovery. But during the celebration, the victim goes into panic, and starts writhing in pain. His chest starts to warp, and then it bursts open, and a snake-like creature slithers out.

They begin searching for the creature, but before long, it has grown into a huge monster that resembles a 7 foot tall lobster with sharp teeth and claws, and it hunts down the crew, one by one. Ripley and Ash are two of the last survivors, and Ash attempts to kill Ripley, but Parker manages to bludgeon him, revealing that he's an android. When they get Ash's head working again, he reveals that his mission was to bring back a living alien for the Company to study.

Before long, Ripley, and a cat, are the only survivors. She decides to set the spaceship to self-destruct, taking the alien with it. The countdown begins, and she hurries to the escape pods, with the cat in hand. The pod ejects, back to earth.

Continuity mistake: When Ripley reconnects the dismembered Ash droid, the switch from dummy to actor is blatantly visible. A few minutes later the android is incinerated, at which point the dummy head has reappeared and the android's left arm has disappeared. (01:24:39)

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Ripley: Micro changes in air density, my ass.

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Trivia: The character of Lambert was actually born male, and had a sex change to become female. This is stated in the dossier that can be seen in the beginning of Aliens.

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Question: Question about the Director's Cut of the film. The scene where Brett is looking for Jones has been altered slightly - when he looks up at where the water is dripping from, you can actually see the Alien hanging motionlessly from one of the chains. Has Ridley Scott given an explanation as to why he added this new dynamic to the scene? It's easy enough to speculate why, but a link to an 'official' explanation would be appreciated.

Answer: According to the commentary on the DVD, Ridley didn't add this scene to the original cinematic release because he thought it revealed the true horror of the Alien too soon in the film. The scene is quite early in the film and he thought revealing the fully matured Alien at that time would reduce the viewer's fear.

I had watched Alien several times before I noticed the Alien hanging there.At this point the Audience have no idea what the Alien looks like, they're looking at pieces of science fiction equipment put in by the production crew that they can't relate to, so for all they know the Alien could just be a piece of kit hanging there.

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