Alien: Covenant – Good, Bad & Ugly Review

The crew of a colony ship, bound for a remote planet, discover an uncharted paradise with a threat beyond their imagination, and must attempt a harrowing escape. – (Source)

Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 74% (Critics) / 98% (Audience)
Directed By: Ridley Scott
Written By: John Logan, Dante Harper, Jack Paglen and Michael Green
Starring: Michael Fassbender, Katherine Waterston, Billy Crudup, Demián Bichir and Danny McBride
Studio: 20th Century Fox

The Good:
Much like in PROMETHEUS, Michael Fassbender steals the show not only playing Walter, the synthetic assigned to The Covenant ship but also reprising his role as David from PROMETHEUS. He makes both artificial humans completely unique in so many ways that sometimes I forgot that it was the same actor playing both roles.
I really liked how Scott flipped expectations and took the franchise down a different path where the origins of the xenomorphs we know and love are now tied indirectly the fault of humanity and tied into the age old cinema conflict between man and artificial life.
And of course this movie looks amazing which is nothing shocking from a movie with Ridley Scott’s name attached to it.
There were also a couple of really well done action set pieces and the imaginative new ways Scott came up with to have aliens gruesomely burst out of people’s bodies were greatly appreciated by this fan of the franchise.

The Bad:
Why oh why do people who are supposed to be trained for something as important as shepherding a ship full of sleeping human beings and frozen embryos with a mission to colonize a planet react so badly to stressful situations? I would assume that the people chosen to be the crew for that mission would have steadier nerves and not completely freak out, lose all composure and clumsily cause the deaths of fellow crew members as well as accidentally blow up the only means of transport to get everyone off of the planet of death and back to their ship. The crew of The Covenant were worse than the moronic crew of The Prometheus.
Also the majority of the ship’s crew were a bunch of ciphers whose names I couldn’t remember, whose jobs were a mystery to me and whose deaths meant absolutely nothing. And this was even with an inordinate amount of time being spent with these people before all hell broke loose with the various xenomorphs.

The Ugly:
That “big twist” at the end was so lazy, hamfisted and predictable as all hell. Five minutes after David showed up it was obvious what was going to happen.

Final Verdict: I really wanted to love this movie but Ridley Scott makes so many of the same mistakes in ALIEN: COVENANT that he made with PROMETHEUS and then makes a few new ones too and those mistakes drag down a wonderful looking film with a couple really thrilling scenes to the point that it all just became very unsatisfying. On the plus side the plot was a lot tighter this go round and throwing in back-bursting aliens really did make me giddy as a schoolgirl.

Grade: C+

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