It feels like some time since I last stopped by. While a lot of people here mention the shock they had when Ash was revealed to be a robot, I always find the preceding events to be more unnerving.
One of the most frightening moments in the movie for me has always been that point, right after Ripley discovers the details of special order 937 on that little computer monitor, when the camera pans out to reveal Ash standing behind her. It is chilling, as is the methodical manner in Ash attempts to kill her.
And we the audience realise that the alien is not the villain of the film.
I always feel that Alien stands head and shoulders above the other movies in the franchise that followed it. I love Aliens of course. It is a terrific action movie but I don't place it anywhere near the same level as the original. But I digress; there are a number of things that make Alien such an involving and atmospheric film and one, related to Ash and the special order 937, is just how frightening the company is. This I believe is largely due to its faceless nature, in which we are left to imagine just how callous it truly is.
Having that taken away from us in Aliens, with the suits in that board meeting, changes the overall tone of the movie dramatically. They're irresponsible, deaf to reason, and bureaucratic but they strike me as being more lazy than evil. And while it is feasible that the men and women behind special order 937 in the original are the same type of characters, we don't know.
Sometimes, a little mystery goes a long way.
And, just for the record, I am deeply envious of anyone who has had the experience of seeing this movie on the big screen. Should the opportunity come my way, I will definitely take it.