O@tPB*: Alien: Covenant

*Orca at the Pirate Bay 🙂

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Alien: Covenant (2017)

The crew of the colony ship Covenant, bound for a remote planet on the far side of the galaxy, discovers what they think is an uncharted paradise, but is actually a dark, dangerous world. When they uncover a threat beyond their imagination, they must attempt a harrowing escape.

IMDb: 6.6

Tomatometer: 70%, 59%

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Let me say this right away: I don’t really know what to say about Alien: Covenant. I don’t even know what to think about it exactly. It doesn’t even depend on the expectancies each audience member has when watching Alien: CovenantPrometheus sequel or Alien prequel – it will leave most of us rather undecided and speechless.

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So let’s try to analyse the movie by ultilizing the usual attributes, and let’s start with the director, Ridley Scott. He’s the heart and soul of the Alien franchise, he’s the man with the greater vision, the man with all the answers. And I must admit AC looks great as a science fiction film, has very high production value and a lot of real effects that happened in camera and not on green screen.

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The actors all did great jobs, even though most of the characters were treated and develoed like the throwaway characters they were. Best of all was Michael Fassbender’s slightly over the top performance as the two androids David and Walter, which indeed makes sense. Also very good were of course Katherine Waterston (Daniels), and astonishingly well were aslo Billy Crudup as Oram and Danny McBride as Tennessee.

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All the others played much better than their characters deserved. I tell you why, right after the next photo. 😉

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Remember that the whole Alien franchise has always been more of a horror thriller in space than real SciFi? After the weird Prometheus Ridley Scott obviously remembered as well as gives us the good old Xenomorphs and horror again. The crew of the proud vessel Covenant behaves accordingly and does the most stupid things and comes to the most harebrained decisions. They are really just dead meat, like the hordes of stupid teenagers we love to see being slaughtered in the usual horror flicks.

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Without wanting to give too much away it needs to be said that the real danger hides somewhere else, much closer and in plain sight, and the xenomorphs are rather symptoms than the cause of the horrortrip. But anyway, back to the movie and the old question: Is AC any good?

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Let’s say it’s heaps better than Prometheus. It brings the aliens back and tries to still keep a quasi high level of philosophical stuff. And while the alien parts were great and even a bit of nailbiting fun, the rest left us cold.

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The action and suspense parts were competently filmed but nothing new. AC borrowed many motives from earlier Alien movies, nothing we haven’t seen already. Still it was ok-ish suspenseful. But honestly, we’ve expected more. More creativity, new ideas, a break from the old horror-movie mould.

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But that was exactly what AC didn’t give us. So it rather disappointed both sides of our expectations, it wasn’t the all-explaining Prometheus sequel and neither a cool Alien prequel.

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That’s extremely poor form considering that the script was written by no less than six (in words: 6) screenwriters. Maybe the old adage of “too many cooks …” turned out to be true again. Oh Hollywood, will you ever learn?

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Paricularly shameful I find this happening to a Ridley Scott movie. That man  is a H-wood heavyweight, his own production company was co-producing this movie, so he shouldn’t be in a position were he needs to accept stupid compromises. We expect a Ridley Scott film to be a Ridley Scott film, not some ruined by committee shitfest.

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So do we have to assume that what we just watched was indeed purely Ridley Scotts idea? Really? That’s indeed rather disappointing. But at least, as I already stated, AC was much better than Prometheus. Although he could film my hometown’s phonebook and it would be better than Prometheus.

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Let me tell you what I think: Methinks Ridley Scott has driven the Alien vehicle in a cul-de-sac and can’t find a way to turn around and get out of that particular predicament. If I was in his shoes I’d have a simple solution, so simple and elegant, only a simpleton such a Orca would do it. Listen …

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I’d never made Prometheus in the first place. By examining the past and asking the real big questions, one would only demystify the Aliens and make them less suspenseful. Instead of digging up past artefacts I’d look in the future of the story and the franchise.

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I would start my next movie exactly where Jean-Pierre Jeunet’s Alien: Resurrection (1997) left off: Yes, I’d introduce our favourite xenomorphic space monsters to earth! A rich world of adventurous adventures awaits us there. Undreamed of occasions to spin the story to future heights. Sounds good? I think so.

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CONCLUSION: Neither here nor there, Alien: Covenant is despite all the talent and money and Ridley Scott just Meh.

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YouTube reviewers:

Jeremy is mercilessly overacting as usual. 🙂

Alachia is overanalyzing as usual.

Grace gives us a lot of spoilers and Hollywood insider knowledge.

Chris even liked Prometheus … imagine that. 😮

Mark is troubled. 😦

IGN thinks Alien: Covenant is in parts “ponderous, even pretentious”.

 

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