I had a chance to see Ridley Scott’s new film, Alien: Covenant, last night and I wanted to share a few thoughts on the film:
- Overall, I am very torn about it. On the one hand, all the complaints that people had about scientists/crew members behaving stupidly in Prometheus are back with a vengeance. On numerous occasions, a character says “I’m just going to wander off by myself in this extremely dangerous location, but I’ll be right back!” Did these people learn nothing from Wes Craven’s Scream? The fact that it’s 20 years later and filmmakers like Ridley Scott are still using the same tropes of people acting super dumb is a disappointment.
- On the other hand, I think this movie is one of the best prequels/requels/sidequels/sequels/whatevers ever made, in the sense that it not only improves upon previous films like Prometheus, but actually makes them more thematically resonant. The story, the plot, the ideas are really strong in this film — the characters are not.
- Fassbender’s performance in Covenant is one of its highlights. Putting aside his blockbuster fare, Fassbender continues to choose roles that are artistically challenging, and his role in this film is no different.
- There are Xenomorphs in this movie and they mostly look pretty weird because they are mostly CG creations. Remember when you first saw Attack of the Clones and there were a gajillion storm troopers that didn’t look quite right (because they were all CG and not practical)? That’s what it kind of feels like to see Xenomorphs move and behave in ways completely free from the constraints of their filmic predecessors.
- DEFINITELY watch Prometheus before you see this film, if you want to be slightly less lost about WTF is giong on.
I think Covenant is definitely strong enough to recommend it. I just wish its profound ideas were in a better film. I discuss my thoughts further in this Periscope broadcast.