The Lists: In Contention's Top 10 Performances in Ridley Scott's Sci-Fi Trio
With 'Prometheus' on the way, we look at the director's work with actors in the genre
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1. Sigourney Weaver, "Alien"
The impact that this character has had both culturally and on the cinematic landscape cannot be exaggerated. When I watched “Alien” again recently, what impressed me the most was the nuance that Weaver brought to the role. There is now a tendency for women to take on “tough” characters and imbue them with a puffed up version of masculinity, which doesn’t always play as organic. Ripley is simply who she is: rational, compassionate, resourceful and good at what she does. Her feminine aspects (her instincts about Ash) serve her just as well as her masculine. There is nothing forced about Weaver’s performance and it is all the more compelling in its subtlety. Ripley is iconic because it was a groundbreaking role for a woman, but she is indelible because it is clear that the actress was not lost in ideas in her portrayal, she was simply bringing a dimensional, fascinating human being to life.