**No Spoilers for Alien: Covenant**
The Alien franchise holds a very special place in my heart. It’s one of my all-time favorite series of films, even though there is really only two good movies out of all of them. Both Alien and Aliens have a spot on my list for the best films ever. I fell in love with the characters and the mythology of the xenomorphs, and sadly all that love turned into pain when I saw Alien 3 and Aliens: Resurrection. Not only do they fail in comparison to the first two movies, but they are just really bad films to watch.
And then Prometheus came out.
I was so hopeful when I sat down to watch Prometheus. It was the prequel to Alien directed by Ridley Scott, who also directed the first movie. The trailers looked incredible and it was also the first R-rated movie that I saw at the cinema. Sadly, I walked out of the theater completely disappointed by what I saw. It was devastating.
Five years later, we now have Alien: Covenant, the sequel to Prometheus as well as the prequel to Alien but is also the second film in a series of prequels that Ridley Scott wants to make in the Alien universe. Yeah, it’s a really confusing structure of movies.
Going into Alien: Covenant, I was hesitantly excited. It seemed like the movie was trying to remove itself from the disaster that was Prometheus and instead focus more on what made Alien so special. They even decided not to call the film Prometheus 2. Again, the trailers looked great so I couldn’t help but get a little excited. So is the film any good?
I think so.
The hard thing about this movie is that it is spilt up into two types of genres. Large portions of this film is focused on the more philosophical aspects of the Alien universe that was explored in Prometheus. Then there was also sections of the movie that served as true Alien sci-fi horror sequences that were not present in the previous film. Surprisingly, a few of the more Prometheus-like moments of Alien: Covenant were actually interesting and enjoyable to watch. It offers up some topics of conversation in regards to the Alien universe and what it means for the future. However, there are also certain sequences that drag on and don’t fit tonally with the sci-fi horror elements that are scattered throughout the rest of the film.
One of the big reasons why I love the Alien franchise is its use of sci-fi horror and biology. The process of what makes a xenomorph a xenomorph is so terrifying and interesting to me. This movie has some truly great moments of suspense and disgusting gore. I haven’t been afraid of an Alien film in a long time, so it was refreshing to be on the edge of my seat again. I’m just sucker for a chilling xenomorph kill.
Unlike Prometheus, there is actually a few really likeable characters. Daniels (Katherine Waterson) works well as the lead. I thought the beginning of the film does a great job of getting us attached to the character, but unfortunately there really is no arc for her after the first 10 minutes. But at least she doesn’t make stupid decisions, like running away from a giant ship in a straight line (looking at you Prometheus)! Danny McBride does incredibly well in a dramatic role. He doesn’t get a whole lot to do in the film, but he isn’t there as an annoying comic-relief character. Michael Fassbender does a great playing two completely different androids: Walter and David. David continues to be the best factor of Prometheus and Walter makes a fine addition to the cast of androids in the Alien films.
It’s hard to talk about what I really don’t like about this film without getting into spoilers, so I’m going to say things as vague as possible:
The prologue video “Last Supper” that is featured on the 20th Century Fox YouTube channel should have been in the beginning of the movie. I didn’t watch the video until after I saw the movie and it baffles me that they didn’t include it in the film.
The big questions asked in Prometheus are never really answered or even recognized in this movie.
There are new HUGE additions to the confusing Alien lore that don’t really make any sense. I can imagine that future films COULD answer some of the plot holes, but right now it’s just a big complex mess.
Instead of giving us any answers, the movie just asks more questions.
The movie continues to follow the trend of making Space Jockeys (Engineers) the WORST part of the Alien franchise.
I’ve seen the movie twice now, and I’m still not quite sure how a feel about it. When the film acts more like an Alien film, it is wonderful and terrifying. But when the movie acts more like Prometheus, it suffers from a confusing lore full of philosophical questions. However, unlike Prometheus, some of the “philosophy” actually works. I’m going to give Alien: Covenant a GOOD out of 10 because I think the positives slightly outweigh the negatives. At least by the end of this film, I can see the potential of a great Alien film in the future.
The one thing I know for sure is that this is NOT as bad as Prometheus.
What did you think of Alien: Covenant?
Let me know down below!
Thanks for reading!
**My next review will be on Wonder Woman**