I suspect no one in the audience to see a new science fiction film on 22 June 1979 will ever forget that night. Alien tore up the rule book and completely redefined what the genre could be. Ridley Scott’s film remains on of the greatest journeys into space and still inspires writers, filmmakers and artists to this day. Not to mention spawning a series of increasingly unconvincing sequels. That one particular moment will forever be ingrained in the consciousness of generations of terrified film fans.
Alien, and its subsequent offshoots, have become part of popular culture. Inspiration to so many and referenced by many more. However, one tribute stands out. Every year an amateur dramatic group comprised of Dorset bus drivers performs a play for charity, usually a pantomime or comedic reimagining. One year they decided instead to produce a serious adaptation of the sci-fi classic. Alien On Stage was born.
Alien On Stage is the ultimate festival film. Lucy Harvey and Danielle Kummer’s documentary tracks the plucky amateurs from the local village hall to the West End of London. Along the way, we’re introduced to a likeable cast and crew, some truly inspirational feats of ingenuity and a triumph of determination. It’s a film which will have audiences in hysterics and one which deserves to be seen in packed cinemas. Alien On Stage is an unmitigated joy.
Alien On Stage is available on demand at Fantasia International Film Festival.