Ridley Scott’s Alien franchise has been around for nearly 40 years and has consisted of five movies, not including the one that’s being reviewed in this article. In 2012 Scott opted to jump on the prequel bandwagon and start an origin story of everyone’s favorite Xenomorph…that’s the fictional extraterrestrial species that we’re introduced to in the original 1977 classic. The problem with Prometheus (2012) is that it contains exactly ZERO of these terrifying creatures. With that being said, the prequel still managed to capture the imagination (and dollars) of many based on the knowledge of what’s to come…eventually. 2017 must be eventually because fans are finally introduced (ummm reintroduced??) to this gut splitting, nightmare invoking killing machine. Are you ready for Alien: Covenant to breathe down your neck?
Alien: Covenant is set not long after events that were laid out in Prometheus. A spaceship full of pioneering colonists heads toward a new life on a new planet. Before this mission really gets going, disaster strikes that sets off a series of unfortunate events that will eventually place the entire ship in a massively dire situation. Things go from bad to worse when curiosity puts the crew in a situation that will change the evolutionary food chain forever.
The familiar face of Michael Fassbender returns to the franchise in the same capacity as he did in the last movie. Androids have been the mainstay of every movie in the franchise and that streak continues here. Oram (Billy Crudup) serves as the ship’s captain, not a role that he sought out. He must do his best to keep everyone level-headed while the walls are crumbling around him. Katherine Waterston and Danny McBride just a couple of the other actors tasked with keeping things interesting.
Ridley Scott addresses his most glaring flaw from the first movie, he gives audiences an up close and personal look at the Xenomorph in its natural killing-without-prejudice state. And for that fans will thank you. The biggest disappointment, at least in my eyes, is that Scott has yet to recapture the bone chilling fear that was felt in both Alien (1977) and Aliens (1986). Oh well, I guess you can’t have everything. The story unfolds in a gratifying manor for the most part. Fans will get some of what they love mixed in with a few dull moments here and there.
No matter how you slice it, Alien: Covenant addresses items that were blatantly avoided with Prometheus. Now that I think about it, Prometheus as the title should have been warning enough that it might lack a Xenomorph sighting. Overall though, the new offering is step in the right direction. Tried and true fans finally get some things that they’ve been hoping for. Sadly though, the lack of true horror holds this chapter back from being exceptional. You can see it in theaters starting Thursday, May 18th at 7:00PM in many cities around the US.