Review: Memory – The Origin of “Alien” (2019 Fantastic Fest)

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Title: Memory: The Origins of Alien
MPAA Rating: Not Rated
Director: Alexandre O. Philippe
Starring: Bijan Aalam, Tim Boxell, Axelle Carolyn
Runtime: 1 hr 35 mins

What It Is: This documentary chronicles the untold story of the science fiction classic Alien. It’s rooted in Greek and Egyptian mythologies. And especially how one moment, a moment that would become iconic forged the entire personality of this no classic feature. With interviews from the people closest to the production, we get to hear about what shaped the unique look and feel of this. Learn exactly HOW influential director Ridley Scott was.

What We Think: This works better as a featurette on some rerelease of this film on Blu-Ray. How this got put together into a feature I do not know. Ultimately this film lacks enough substance to really take itself seriously. The same can be said of the documentary’s tone. It is far too serious about itself. Speaking of this film in a way that no one would ever realistically do. While seeing how and what inspired the look of the film and it’s visual architect H.R. Giger. The format is a little sloppy and doesn’t really work for me. There’s an almost unsure nature as to why this was made.

Our Grade: C-, There’s nothing wrong with the film…except that as I mentioned it really isn’t a film. It’s nature makes it so frivolous. I can’t really recommend this unless you’re some sort of extreme fan of the film itself. Even then I’m certain there are other featurettes that have been made that are more worthy of your time, money and patience. To say this was the strangest decision I made during the festival would be fairly accurate. Nevertheless, there are so many things that could’ve worked but just…didn’t. It is indeed a missed opportunity.

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