Alien: Covenant’ a successful sci-fi sequel

By Uriel Gonzalez

Ridley Scott is without a doubt a highly accomplished filmmaker with some of the most thought provoking, visually stunning and wonderfully cast films in cinema history to his credit; his accolades speak for themselves with masterworks such as “Blade Runner” and “Alien.” Needless to say, “Alien: Covenant” had big shoes to fill, and at the ripe age of 80 Scott has managed to tailor the new film to do that well.

First off, the film is gorgeously shot. Like in all of Scott’s previous films, it is evident that each scene is meticulously planned, producing breathtaking footage. The film seamlessly blends practical effects and CGI, satisfying old-school purists yet incorporating new techniques.

The set design, creature design and locations are all up to par. It’s clear much time was invested in finding an awe-striking, natural location. On top of that, the team behind the film managed to create mystic ancient architecture to complement the almost paradise-like setting on the new planet.

“Alien: Covenant” is a sequel to “Prometheus,” however, the film works as a stand-alone movie, so if you have yet to see the 2012 film, rest assured you won’t be left in the dark. On the other hand, if you have seen “Prometheus” and want more the film serves as a worthy sequel and answers a multitude of questions, with plenty of series Easter eggs to boot.

If you are looking to “Alien: Covenant” for H.R. Giger’s trademark nightmare fuel, you will be satisfied.

The new neomorphs are horrifying, taking inspiration from Giger’s iconic xenomorph design with a few new twists. The way the beasts make their entrance is a particularly unsettling sight with the gore meter turned way up.

One of the film’s perceived weaknesses is its reliance on human folly to make a bad situation into a worse one. But honestly, how interesting would a horror movie be if everyone made perfect decisions under pressure?

These characters are far from foolish, for the most, and it is understandable how people placed under similar pressure might react similarly. So while the film does include some classic horror cliches like splitting up in a hostile environment, I would not consider their actions to be so farfetched.

The acting was top of the line all around, keeping the audience engaged without clunky lines of dialogue or mediocre acting.

Danny McBride, who played Tennessee, was most impressive. He is mostly known for his comedic roles in films like “Pineapple Express,” but here he manages to break his mold and deliver a powerful performance.

Also, Michael Fassbender, who stole the show in “Prometheus,” managed to come back and do it again. He convincingly plays two characters, David and Walter, with vastly different accents and personalities, further flexing his acting muscle. Katherine Waterston also fills her familiar character role nicely.

While this movie does unapologetically include classic slasher tropes, it manages to be much more than a standard gore fest. Much like predecessor “Prometheus,” the film explores many biblical themes, such as a god complex, creation and its origins and does so without a pretentious or preachy tone.

If you enjoy pondering philosophical questions in films, this may be the movie for you.

Aside from that, “Alien: Covenant” manages to throw even the most hardcore “Alien” fan for a loop. The film has so many fake-outs and twists, making the plot anything but predictable or boring.

Overall, “Alien: Covenant” manages to be a highly engaging, well-acted and visually stunning sci-fi slasher.

Classic sci-fi enthusiasts had high hopes for Ridley Scott’s new entry in the illustrious “Alien” series, and despite minor nitpicks, the film manages to quench anybody’s nerdy thirst for an intergalactic sci-fi thriller.

Courtesy of 20th Century Fox

‘Alien Covenant’ movie poster

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