I was rewatching Alien recently because of the Prometheus trailer and decided to finally review it. I personally didn't much care for Alien when I first watched it. This spaceship full of space truckers is eventually picked off one by one by a scary monster. Well, no shit... they're a bunch of hapless space truckers, of course they're gonna get eaten. They barely had any tools to defend themselves. Plus... the personalities of the first film, the characters... they all suck, except for Ripley. Ripley is the only one in there with anything to latch onto, the rest of the crew might as well be extras. I felt nothing for them. Whereas in Aliens, there are so many great personalities that you grow to love. Vasquez, Bishop, Hicks, and of course Hudson... they're all a bit larger then life and you really get a sense of who they are. With Alien, it was... uh, the black guy who seems to want to talk about money, and then that chick with the bad haircut, and uh... that first guy who gets chestbursted, and that guy with the trucker hat who jokes with the black guy, and uh... there's just not much there.
The Dallas death scene also got to me. Dallas is in the air ducts and climbs down to confront the alien. Now, he shines his flashlight down one duct and just turns around and what happens? The Alien just stretches out its arms and holds them there, like it's saying "Boo!" That's it, it just holds its arms out as if preparing to give him a hug. It looks ridiculous and really turned me off. If an alien is scampering around in the air duct and hunting Dallas, wouldn't it actually leap or lunge at him? Instead, it just holds out its arms and looks at him. I don't get it, how is this any good? I mean, it just feels like the sort of thing you'd see in a haunted house, where things jump out at you to scare you, but without any intention of actually harming you. They just jump out and scream Boo and you're supposed to scream in terror. It sure is strange of an alien to stick out its arms as if trying to receive the blessing of Jesus Christ or something.
Another problem is that most of the crew get killed off because they're morons. Just think back to the Alien's final two kills, the black guy and the girl with the bad haircut. The black guy's got his flamethrower, but doesn't use it on the Alien cause the girl's right next to it. That's just moronic. It's a fight to stay alive, I'd have used that flamethrower the moment I saw the alien. Instead, he runs in, gets the flamethrower knocked out of his hands, and gets killed. It's really, really moronic. I don't care if that girl was a hot piece of ass (which she wasn't), I'm using that flamethrower. No ifs, ands, or buts. That alien's already killed off half the crew. Sorry if that chick gets burned, but it's for the greater good.
Of course, the problem with the finale of the film is that the Alien is the one who ends up being a complete moron. Here we've established that the alien is "the perfect organism" and incredibly good at killing people and being fast and everything, and what happens? It somehow starts moving incredibly slowly in this tight, confined space with Ripley, who's only armed with a small hook gun, and somehow gets its ass kicked. What changed? Why is this alien suddenly incredibly bad at killing people now? It makes no sense.
Also, the gratuitous shots of Ripley in her freaking panties were just embarrassing. They were incredibly distracting and unnecessary. Here Scott's been building up all this tension and suspense and now... all of a sudden, he what... wants us to pull our pants down and start jerking it? Unbelievable. I'm no prude, but this just felt cheap and exploitative.