Harry Dean Stanton and Tom Skerritt, 22nd century space travellers in Ridley Scott’s Alien, have been reunited nearly four decades later for the very personal and posthumously released film Lucky inspired by Stanton’s life and experiences.
Nearly four decades after they appeared in Ridley Scott’s brilliant sci-fi horror Alien, Harry Dean Stanton and Tom Skerritt are reunited on-screen by director John Carroll Lynch in dusty SoCal tragi-comedy Lucky.
Based in part on Stanton’s own life, Lucky sees the late actor play the ornery eponymous character as he contemplates the realities of old age and the inevitability of death with an assortment of quirky characters in a tiny southern Californian town. Stanton delivers another of his great character-actor performances in a film that celebrates the subtleties of screen performance.
Skerritt joins Stanton on-screen once again nearly 40 years after they appeared in influential sci-fi horror Alien as a man who turns up at Lucky’s favoured cafe in search of coffee and a piece of pie. Stanton’s cynical old man, a Navy cook in his younger years, sees Skerritt’s Marines cap on the counter and the two reminisce about the Pacific theatre of war.
In a film built on anecdote, the sequence between the two veterans sticks to director Lynch’s dramatic approach. Here, Skerritt is the storyteller, recalling the smile of a young girl as she commits suicide rather than face the perceived horrors of American occupation. It’s another instance of Lucky finding contemplation in the face of death, the fragility of his life in focus after a recent black-out and fall in his home.
Part of Lucky’s charm is the nostalgia we can apply to it. And for fans of both actors and Alien, this is a lovely moment.
Lucky is in UK cinemas and on VOD now.