16

Years ago I watched a film where an alien and human are having a dogfight (each in their own small spaceships). They crashland on a planet together, and although they still want to kill each other, they realise they can't survive without each other's help. (They don't share a language.)

In the end

the human helps the alien give birth by cutting her open.

The film starts with what you think is a sun rising over a distant planet, and the planet turns out to be a dead astronaut's helmet.

  • This question does not have an accepted answer and should be reopened. – Mithical Nov 1 '17 at 18:49
  • @Mithrandir The OP has left a now-deleted comment "Thank you... I must find it again!" on the answer below. – Rand al'Thor Nov 1 '17 at 20:17
33

Enemy Mine, based on a novella of the same name by Barry B. Longyear.

Humans are in an interstellar war with an alien species named Dracs. The human pilot, Willis Davidge, and the Drac pilot, Jeriba Shigan, crash on the planet and have to co-operate to survive. As time passes, they become friends and learn each others' languages and cultures. Jeriba dies in childbirth, but makes Davidge promise to raise the child in the Drac traditions. After some years, the Drac child is kidnapped by slavers and Davidge is shortly thereafter rescued by the human military. Davidge later rescues the child and returns him to the Drac homeworld. There he is able to help him be inducted into Drac society because of his knowledge of Drac culture and the Jeriba family history that he learned while stranded on the planet.

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  • 2
    One of the best movies ever – BBlake Jun 25 '13 at 16:14
  • 1
    It seems a bit heavy-handed in retrospect, but for its time it was really awesome. – Drew Jun 26 '13 at 9:27
  • The movie was good, but the novella is on a whole different level. I read it in a compilation edited by I. Asimov. The story was originally published on "his" magazine. His intro was interesting (from memory): despite a Senior Editor(?) title, he had little involvement with the magazine. This one time, the editors sent him a copy of this story by an unknown author and asked whether he thought they should accept it. He was so impressed, he demanded they did. Remarcable, given how he once claimed to feel about SF stories by others (see 'Before the Golden Age'). It went onto winning a Hugo. – Euro Micelli Jun 28 '13 at 5:30
  • 1
    (If you are not brought to tears by the original ending on the novella, your heart is made of stone). – Euro Micelli Jun 28 '13 at 5:36
  • This is a great summary! – Nicolas Barbulesco Aug 18 '15 at 11:13

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