Alien: Covenant (2017) Review
Written By: CM
Edited By: Grave Reviews Staff
Director: Ridley Scott
Producers: David Giler, Walter Hill, Ridley Scott, Mark Huffam, Michael Schaefer
Writers: John Logan, Dante Harper, Jack Paglen, Michael Green
Date Reeased: May 4, 2017
Michael Fassbender as David 8
Billy Crudup as Chris Oram
Danny McBride as Tennessee Faris
Demián Bichir as Dan Lope
Carmen Ejogo as Karine Oram
Jussie Smollett as Ricks
Callie Hernandez as Upworth
Amy Seimetz as Maggie Faris
Rating = 3/5 Graves
***May contain some spoilers***
11 years after Prometheus, a colonization spaceship takes off to move to another planet. Seven years away, synthetic crew member Walter One wakes up his crewmates from stasis after a shockwave damages the ship. Upon repairing the ship, they pick up a transmission of a human voice from a nearby planet and decide to take a closer look. However, upon landing, they immediately regret their decision as two of their crew members start getting deadly infections.
Alien: Covenant (2017) is a lot more gruesome than Prometheus. Opting for a darker color palette, everyone can already anticipate the amount of gore it has compared to the first film. This time, we get a lot more alien action, a severed head, disturbing makeshift alien mutation labs, and some bone cracking. All of these mixed with Prometheus’ impressive visuals, this sequel is definitely a step-up when it comes to the gore.
The Grave Review
Alien: Covenant started off extremely underwhelming. Once again viewers were introduced to new characters and a whole new generation to learn. Prometheus’ open ending didn’t help either. As many had become invested in Dr. Shaw’s quest for answers, the new setting of its sequel was disappointing as everyone wanted it to pick up where the first film left off. However, towards the middle of the film, Alien fans finally get some answers to their decades-long questions.
David’s return in the sequel was exciting. In Prometheus, we already caught a glimpse of the villain in the making. This time, the android has come back full force, finally revealing the story behind the xenomorphs we were introduced to in the very first Alien movie. The revelation was not the most original, but the realization is quite haunting.
The situation has gone full circle. In the beginning, a clip of David talking to his creator, Peter Weyland, was a clear premonition for what’s to come. Ultimately, we find out that the very thing that is the biggest threat to humanity was created by humans themselves. The idea of the “engineer” humanoids getting wiped off by their creation’s creation was a spine-chilling plot twist that definitely left Alien: Covenant on a satisfying note. It was a lot more well thought out than Prometheus and it finally connected to the beloved original story.
The addition of a new heroine, Daniels, once again did not disappoint. Although she’s not as kickass as Ripley or as smart as Dr. Shaw, she was able to stand alone as a strong protagonist. However, she is not the star of the show in this film. Usually, the Alien series mutes out secondary male characters to let the feminist themes peek through, but this time, Fessbender’s characters Walter and David as well as McBride’s Tennessee won the hearts of the viewers.
Fessbender’s stellar portrayal of Alien’s androids, both a ruthless villain and a protector, helped fans understand the importance of these synthetic beings. Although this was touched on in Alien Resurrection, it was a mere afterthought that ended up being half-baked. In Alien: Covenant, we finally see two androids interact in powerful dialogues that ultimately defined their importance in the franchise. For the first four films, they were merely passive supporting characters and Scott’s decision to make them the very cause of the first four movies was an excellent risk to take.
Despite this big improvement on the plot, the characters, and the storytelling, a question that pops up in this film is how many times can they borrow from the first film. This repeated story of waking up from stasis and ending in stasis after a sequence of fight scenes with the last standing alien that somehow managed to enter the spaceship has been proven to be effective as a sci-fi thriller, but in this film, it just got tiring knowing how it’s going to end. Unless Scott switches it up in the next movie, there’s simply no point on continuing the series anymore.
Overall, Alien: Covenant (2017) stands as a decent sci-fi thriller. This modern-day Frankenstein plot is a story that will never get old. Exploring the dark themes of creation and scientific innovation is at the very heart of genre. Scott redeemed himself with the plot of Alien: Covenant and after that plot twist ending, many fans are anticipating the return of this prequel series to the big screen.
For the foregoing reasons, Grave Reviews gives Alien: Covenant (2017) three graves out of five graves.
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