Well, that was a fucking fun ride. I LOVED ALIEN: COVENANT. Completely blows Prometheus out of the water. And that’s really funny because it is more of a Prometheus sequel than it is a true Alien prequel. Of course you actually get Xenomorphs again in this movie but the mythology, theology, and over all sci-fi integrity that Prometheus brought is front and center in this film. I am not going to lie, I am an unabashed Prometheus fan. People didn’t like it because it asked more questions than it answered, it was weird, they didn’t like the Engineers, there were no Xenomorphs. But I saw a more complicated film that tried to do something new that people hadn’t seen before than to just explain what the fuck a “space jockey” was. But Alien: Covenant is for both Prometheus fans and it is also trying to win back the people that didn’t like Prometheus very much. And I think it exceeds on all levels.
Don’t get me wrong, this doesn’t even touch Alien or Aliens in terms of quality and being a masterpiece. But it does get closer than anything that came before it. So yes, the best Alien film since 1986’s Aliens. I’m not afraid to say that. If you are expecting a click, click, click action bonanza you are going to be extremely disappointed. You get more of the slow burn that the first Alien film gives. Lots of exposition, and a slow crawl toward the nightmare you know is before you. And when things do get going, they never let up until the end. The action is pretty stellar and the special effects are fantastic. Well most of them are. If I do have one complaint is that some of the shots of the aliens in action could’ve used a little more polish. But the worlds, ships, and environment are so real and awe-inspiring to look at since the world of Avatar.
But Zach, is it scary? Well, there are some very gross and disturbing parts. It gives you probably the most graphic gore infested Alien film to date. But I wouldn’t say it is scary. More tense and action oriented, with a dreadful and sinister vibe. Not like horror jump scares left and right. Which is okay. Cheap jump scares don’t work anymore. Dread is always the perfect recipe. Ridley’s Scott’s direction in this is near pitch perfect. I am very glad he came back to the genre that he started and is treating his series like Michael Bay does with Transformers, but instead of keeping dropping his baby like Bay does, he actually nurses and cares for it. All the shots here are wonderful to look at and the set design is fantastic. And if you are looking for answers to Prometheus, while it still asks a couple of questions we will get with the inevitable third film, you get some huge answers the last film asked, and those answers are delicious and satisfying.
The acting is better here too. Michael Fassbender shines in everything he is in and here is no exception. He is perfect playing an android and seems to be really into his role. The film has a couple of smarter characters in this than the last one two. Danny McBride, Katherine Waterson, and Billy Crudup are fine here, but they are no Fassbender and definitely no Sigourney Weaver. McBride is actually really quite impressive here, considering that he is playing a little something more serious than the usual assholes and obnoxious characters he plays. Waterson is one of the better female characters to date, showing a more impressive strong female character that has some smarts as well as brawn. But like I said, this is the Fassbender show.
I love this film. I already want to see it again. If you like it depends on how much you love the Alien franchise and how much you liked Prometheus. It’s a direct Prometheus follow up while also trying to lean it’s way more toward the Alien mythos and atmosphere. The perfect combination in my eyes. I see it traveling straight more toward an Alien environment in the third one, with some last minute insights wrapping everything up leading us to the events of the first film. I thought this was a really great film with a lot of cool ideas, awesome action, beautiful cinematography, relentless gore, and just a whole lot of fun. Also, love the mixture between the score of Prometheus and Alien. Just a really cool melting pot of a movie.