The look and feel of the Nostromo ship is shamelessly inspired by Stanley Kubrick.
A genre filmmaker paying tribute to Stanley Kubrick? What a shock! Excuse the sarcasm, folks, and let’s acknowledge the fact that Ridley Scott directly told his set designers, as well as concept artist Ron Cobb, to closely look at the interiors seen in two of Kubrick’s most celebrated movies, 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968) and Dr. Strangelove (1964).
In 2001, Scott responded to the spaceship’s realistic, earthbound look and feel, which went against the otherworldly, high-concept vessels of the Star Wars world; with Dr. Strangelove, the director took a liking to the military aesthetic of the film’s sets. Combining those two influences, the Nostromo’s physical presentation is appropriately gritty, an elaborate flying labyrinth hard-wired for NASA-infused nightmares.