Ugly Alien

alien4kHere’s a definite pre-order, one of my favourite films of all time, in 4K UHD. But what an ugly bloody cover. What is it with cover art these days? I would have hoped, considering how niche/film collector-oriented that premium discs on 4K are in these streaming-dominated days, that the studios might consider showing some effort, if only in releasing catalogue films with their original poster art (which is something after all that would likely appeal to original fans and collectors). Instead we get all sorts of nonsense (can’t say I was particularly impressed by the recent 4K Superman: The Movie either, much preferring that films original Bob Peak art) and this Alien one seems  particularly bad. It doesn’t represent the dark mood of the original film at all. A really missed opportunity considering how definitive 4K discs are supposed to be in representing the films at their very best (and in all likelihood in the final physical format that the films will ever be released on). Sure, ultimately its the film that counts rather than the box it comes in, but the whole point of physical is how it looks and feels as a overall package. alien4k2I’m really a fan of going back to original poster art (particularly with catalogue films, as in the old days, posters were usually given some thought and attention compared to the routine photoshop clones we get today). The original Alien poster was stark, menacing, and dripped mystery and warning while being very enigmatic. And the film was never all about the Alien itself in my book- it was the setting and the mood and the characters.

So anyway, my copy of Alien in 4K is obviously ordered but I do wish they had given some thought to that cover- or perhaps offered a double-sided sleeve with the original art on the reverse to allow the alternative if required?

Or maybe I’m just distracting myself from the really horrific fact that the film is celebrating its 40th Anniversary, and all the years that entails for someone like me who remembers its original release (I wasn’t old enough to see it over here at it got saddled with a ‘X’ certificate at the time but I was so fascinated from the film magazines and the tie-in novelization etc). Seems every time a film gets announced its another sobering reminder (The Abyss finally seems to be coming on HD & UHD now that this year marks its thirtieth anniversary- I was listening to the deluxe soundtrack the other day and could recall buying the original OST cd and listening to it, as if it were only yesterday, only it’s not yesterday, far from it). I seem to marking my middle-age by all the films I saw in the cinema ‘back in the day etc’ hitting anniversaries that are really pretty sobering when I think about it.

 

4 thoughts on “Ugly Alien

  1. The only reasoning I can think of for that cover is they’ve tried to make it shiny and colourful, because 4K is shiny and colourful. Or maybe that’s applying too much logic (albeit warped logic) to the studios’ design process nowadays.

    Anyway, I’ve resolved not to preorder catalogue films on 4K until I’ve seen reviews (although many look stunning, I’ve seen a few that were no better, sometimes arguably even worse, than their Blu-rays), but I do hope this is a good’un. I might also hold off in anticipation of a box set, seeing as I actually like all the Alien films (to one degree or another).

    1. Matthew McKinnon

      I watched this restoration in a cinema last Sunday and – apart from a couple of oddly dark shots – it looked phenomenal.
      This is a film that’s always been well-treated on home video. I wouldn’t worry.

  2. Matthew McKinnon

    It is really ugly!
    I hope there’s a different cover under the cardboard sleeve, but to be honest I can’t see Fox splashing out for two designs these days, home video budgets being what they are.

  3. Pingback: Best Batman Movie Ever – the ghost of 82

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