Alien vs. Illegal Alien
As the iconic tagline goes, “In space, no one can hear you scream.” 40 years have gone by and those words remain engraved in our brains. Synonymous with the intensity of scares courtesy of Ridley Scott’s horrifying work of cinematic art titled ALIEN (’79), the creator of one of the world’s best freak-show-flicks is blessing us once again. Luring his audience into a darker realm of unknown, who better to revisit your heart and mind’s pulse-pounding reaction. If anyone knows how to terrify audiences with smart, sophisticated storytelling, it’s Scott. His original remains a standard bearer for the horror genre.
Set 10 years after the events of Scott’s 2012 hit prequel PROMETHEUS, ALIEN: COVENANT returns to the roots of the director’s scream-saga with a unique tale inundated with cosmic adventure and monstrous creatures. With this, the 6th installment in the blockbuster series, Scott’s vision comes closer towards revealing the mysterious origins of the mother of all aliens, Xenomorph from the original flick.
All is quiet aboard the spaceship Covenant. The crew and the rest of the 2,000 souls aboard the pioneering vessel are deep in hyper-sleep, leaving the synthetic Walter (Michael Fassbender) to walk the corridors alone. The ship is en route to the remote planet Origae-6, where, on the far side of the galaxy, settlers hope to establish a new outpost for humanity. But peace and tranquility is brought to a halt when a nearby stellar ignition kills Covenant’s energy, resulting in casualties and throwing the mission beyond off course.
Grainy, straight-forward, and beautifully brutal, COVENANT isn’t the strongest or most viciously vibrant of the series, but it has heart. And it dances to the beat of its own dreadful drum. Linking it with its predecessor is made obvious from the start, but PROMETHEUS has a bit more ambition in terms of story-line, characters and their overall objectives. However, COVENANT (although it runs on a simple note) presents an intense continuation into a realm I’m glad Ridley Scott opened up to. It indulges in the spectacle that is the ALIEN franchise as it pays homage to insecurity and harsh darkness of deep-space exploration in the name of mankind. One that grips your soul, pulls it out of your body, and cinematically rips it to shreds. The backbone of this film is clearly Michael Fassbender. This man owns his characters and allows the audience to frightfully (yet intriguingly) root for him despite conflicting atrocities. It doesn’t bury his supporting cast, but Fassbender is clearly the franchise’s new face. One that we’ll continue to see giving COVENANT’s ending.
Grade: B / Genre: Sequel, Sci-Fi, Horror / Rated: R / Run Time: 2 hrs.
Starring: Michael Fassbender, Katherine Waterston, Billy Crudup, Danny McBride, Demián Bichir
Directed by: Ridley Scott
© 2017 20th Century Fox