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A legendary fusion of science fiction and horror, Alien (1979) is one of the most enduring modern myths of cinema - its famously visceral scenes acting like a traumatic wound we seem compelled to revisit. Tracing the constellation of talents that came together to produce the film, Roger Luckhurst examines its origins as a monster movie script called Star Beast, dismissed by many in Hollywood as B-movie trash, through to its afterlife in numerous sequels, prequels and elaborations. Exploring the ways in which Alien compels us to think about otherness, Luckhurst demonstrates how and why this interstellar slasher movie, this old dark house in space, came to coil itself around our darkest imaginings about the fragility of humanity. This special edition features original cover artwork by Marta Lech.

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Product details

  • Paperback | 96 pages
  • 134 x 188 x 8mm | 180g
  • British Film Institute
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 60 colour illustrations
  • 1844577880
  • 9781844577880
  • 297,992

Review quote

'Luckhurst offers many insights into characters and subtext that would presumably escape the average viewer of Ridley Scott's hugely successful SF/horror hybrid. But he also covers the gestation of the production, which is a fascinating story in itself, before dissecting the film to provide a pretty comprehensive and incisive analysis.' - Good Book Guide

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Table of contents

Acknowledgments 'Alien' Afterword: Growing Up with Alien Notes Credits Bibliography

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About Roger Luckhurst

Roger Luckhurst is Professor of Modern and Contemporary Literature at Birkbeck College, University of London, UK.

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