Alien: Covenant

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You always know better than the idiots in horror movies. Don’t go to an uncharted planet streaming John Denver songs to the universe. Hell, don’t go into space period! When you get to the planet, don’t trust its lone inhabitant who lives in a graveyard and conducts science experiments in a drippy cave. Especially when the results of those science experiments look suspiciously like the creepy little things that just blew up your only ride off the planet. But if not for those dumb decisions, there wouldn’t be much of a movie here, and certainly not one about Aliens with a capital A.

As the SXSW Sneak Peek hinted, the idiots in Alien: Covenant are more tolerable than most, because every bad decision leads us to a place we want to go. Ridley Scott’s playful approach here elevates Alien: Covenant above every entry in this franchise since Aliens. The bad decisions aren’t infuriating, they’re chess moves, most of which lead to another piece getting ripped apart into gooey chunks by space monsters.

Everything in this movie services the Aliens, including the speedy pace at which they burst out of people (taking only as long as needed to cause maximum carnage). Alien: Covenant felt like a Star Wars prequel in that respect, as the technology (in this case, the creatures produced by those previously mentioned science experiments) behind the Aliens seems better in the “past” than in the “future”. I suppose that’s inevitable when prequels are made 30 years later, and I was a lot more forgiving of it here that I was with Star Wars. I think that’s because in Alien: Covenant, the changes from the original rules make the movie more entertaining, while the changes in Star Wars made the movies into a CGI tutorial mixed with a boring political drama.

Above all else, Alien: Covenant is fun, and that’s because Ridley Scott and his cast (led by stellar performances by Michael Fassbender (x2) and Katherine Waterston channeling Ripley and kicking Alien ass just like Sigourney Weaver did) deliver everything this franchise’s fans could possibly have asked for. No unnecessary exposition, no extraneous plot points, just Aliens mowing down idiot after idiot.

For that, Alien: Covenant gets a score of eight chest-bursting xenomorphs out of ten.

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24 thoughts on “Alien: Covenant

  1. Jade

    Great post! So many people hated the movie, but I find it great fun as well. Also, if I were in an Alien movie, I would likely be that idiot staring down at a facehugger without knowing it. 😉

    Liked by 3 people

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  2. The Vern

    Explaining where the xenomorphs come from was not interesting and takes away the horror of that species. If the crew had more of a personality I would have been invested when they got picked off. Yes I understand the whole dumb teenage vibe working for some but it didn’t work for me

    Liked by 2 people

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    1. Sean Post author

      It’s a good point about the horror disappearing when the curtain is pulled away. It limits where we might find them, for now. But with how the movie ends, it seems there is a lot of damage to be done now that the demented genius just got a whole new lab.

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  3. J.

    I was hoping to go see this last week, but, y’know, stuff. Anyhoo, I plan to go see it soon. Everything points towards it being infinitely better than Prometheus.

    Liked by 1 person

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    1. Sean Post author

      I found it way better than Prometheus. Still glad I saw Prometheus first, though, because Alien: Covenant leans on it even while trying to be a stand-alone movie.

      Liked by 1 person

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      1. J.

        Currently emailing about a visit to the cinema with a pal of mine. Hopefully see it on the big screen before it’s too late.

        Like

  4. Liz A.

    This is the third review I’ve seen of this movie today. One negative. One positive. And you’re more positive than negative. (Still, I’m not going to see it. Not my thing.)

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  5. badblokebob

    That’s… rather a different take to mine. I didn’t hate the movie like some, but “no unnecessary exposition, no extraneous plot points” is almost the opposite to what I took from it. There is certainly some Alien-based carnage, but I thought the film was less interested in that than it was in pondering all the Prometheus-y stuff.

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    1. Sean Post author

      That is a very different take. Interesting! It definitely takes a while to get going but that made it feel like Alien, and I liked that vibe. I also didn’t get feel that Prometheus poked its head in too much except as was necessary to explain David.

      Liked by 1 person

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  6. Stephanie Ward

    The first two lines of your review are priceless. 😀 I also love the bit about “every bad decision leads us a place we want to go.” Based on everything I’ve heard so far, I’m not in a hurry to see this, but it sounds like it was good fun.

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  7. Courtney Young

    If you look at this movie as a stand-alone movie, it’s definitely good/entertaining. If you lump it into the franchise, it doesn’t offer much. But, that back-burster sequence in the beginning was something special. So well executed and shot. I wish the rest of the film had been more like it.

    Liked by 1 person

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  8. Hazziesof

    I really enjoyed some of the themes in the movie and the aliens were exactly what I wanted, so I guess I shouldn’t complain too much about the predictability. I like your review and I agree, there probably wouldn’t be much of a movie without some of the stupid mistakes. lol But I can’t help but yell, “Come on!”

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    Reply
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