Last month saw the return of the stealthy Xenomorph, one the most iconic movie beasts ever put to screen in Ridley Scotts Third outing in his mastered ‘Alien’ universe, with fans going literally space crazy with all the trailers and internet buzz, we have decided to let our thoughts settle out for more than we wanted and actually sit down and ask ourselves, was it worth it? Be aware, some spoilers lay ahead.
‘Bound for a remote planet on the far side of the galaxy, members (Katherine Waterston, Billy Crudup, Danny McBride and co.) of the colony ship Covenant discover what they think to be an uncharted paradise. While there, they meet David (Michael Fassbender), the synthetic survivor of the doomed Prometheus expedition. The mysterious world soon turns dark and dangerous when a hostile alien life-form forces the crew into a deadly fight for survival.’
Setting out the story on the table, chest busters and all, this is somewhat plain-Jane which gave off a kind-of been there, done that vibe. We’ve got our main protagonist who with their crew ‘stumble’ across and unknown planet that happens to be perfect for colonization and once there (you called it) things go literally bat shit crazy.
Now, to the average movie goer – some may feel that, that is their cake and they’ll certainly eat it up but for us (fans – since the first face hugger clawed at John Hurt) we were left scratching our heads and thinking was it all worth it? Our answer; yes and no.
Covenant gives us a little more answers in the now set in stone Prometheus-esque universe and one thing we need to reiterate is that Scott has taken a left turn in the franchise idea and began to delve into the roots of somewhat of a ‘God creation’ origin like story. We are sad to it is not the Xenomorphs movie any more but one characters origin: David.
Fassbender yet again pulls it out of the bag in his seconding outing and David and now new A.I model Walter who is abroad the Covenant. Playing against himself in few scenes were a delight to watch and the actor is truly stellar in the role.
Another worthy mention is also, Danny McBride as Tennessee. In our opinion he brought a silent humor and nice depth to his pilot character as is one of the more remembered characters of this piece.
We don’t mean to sound anyway blunt but Waterstone was perfectly fine in her role also. Sadly, we feel that she may be compared to Weaver from the original and some of her scenes mimic her – which in a way works as we feel because it is the same universe – may be that is how some characters would react to the same situation, its all to be delved into for the fun of it!
That being said we jump onto the crew and sadly this is where we begin to get a bit nit-picky. The crew are extremely forgettable throughout and we were honestly just sitting there being able to pick out who would meet their demise and when. Some of the decisions made in the writing for them is laughable and falls into some of the more cliched (horror type) tropes seen in many films of the genre, ‘wandering off alone’ and the oddly place and unnecessary ‘shower scene’. We felt that we deserved may be more smart plot points for the characters.
As we’ve certainly seen from all the marketing, the morph is back and are they back! In all it’s bloody glory, Scott (again) gave a little bit more to his fans in many scifi ways – including the new edition the Neomorph who happily decides to burst through ones spin and devour anything in its path. Now we gotta give him props there, that was cool but again under used and thats where we bring that point back up.
Was it worth the hype, our chief writer gladly voices his opinion:
‘For me, Alien: Covenant was the movie Prometheus probably should have been. It looked great, we got some decent Alien action, plenty of gore, it looked beautiful and the character of David was absolutely sinister. If I could fault it on anything, I’d say we didn’t get any feeling for any of the human characters and were merely just waiting for them to be popped off in whatever gruesome way happened next. However, if you look at it as David’s story/trilogy above all else it makes a bit of sense that we’d get little emotional attachment to them. Given how it ended, I’m pretty excited to see where the Alien franchise goes and how it links in to the original Alien movie.’
As you read, characters are at the fault line here and we feel, if Scott added just one scene into the run time we may have cared that bit more. Entitled repectfully ‘The Last Supper’ we meet our doomed crew as they laugh and joke as their voyage takes flight and they begin to pack it in for the long journey, now remember this prologue you might say is four plus minutes, now we can’t fathom why Scott decided to make it a viral YouTube click (yes it has four million plus hits) but we feel having this as part in part with the runtime would have given us more of a feel to why they are doing this and in turn laugh along with their witty banter in the scene.
It may be too much of a nit-pick but that just honestly how we felt. We also got an opinion of a fan and how she felt Covenant played out through and through:
‘Going into this Alien-Prometheus converged film, did I sit in that red cushioned seat expecting ‘Alien: Michael Fassbender’? Not entirely. Although Fassbender’s performance was great, I was hoping for a little bit more of the highly anticipated gruesome aliens. However I did have a good time with this film and one thing i can be certain about is that the cinematography was absolutely breath-taking. Ridley Scott’s phenomenal shots of the uncharted paradise that the Covenant ship crew resort to have been lingering in my mind ever since I watched this film. Unfortunately in my opinion there was not enough character development or in fact development of the aliens which was a slight disappointment. All in all, ‘Alien: Covenant’ was an enjoyable film with some outstanding and exciting sequences and although it didn’t quite fulfill my expectations, I am glad to have seen it.’
Fans will jump with joy in seeing some glorious return to form kills/horror tension filled scenes but we feel that Scott played it too close to the chest with this one and somewhat stopping the lil alien from bursting out to a well deserved feast last scene by Cameron’s sequel.
Yet, how can one movie live up to the hype with it has ‘Alien’ in the title? Will it ever be a well rounded success like its predecessors? May be not, but this is an okay mash-up of everything Scott knows best in tension and popcorn horror.
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