Review of "Alien Covenant (DVD)"

published 24/10/2017 | thedevilinme
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""In space no one can hear you groan....""

Alien Covenant (DVD)

Alien Covenant (DVD)

Star – Michael Fassbender
Genre – Science Fiction
Run Time – 122 minutes
Certificate – 15
Country – U.S.A
Awards – 1 Win & 6 Nominations
Amazon – £10.00 DVD £14.99 Blue Ray
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For many people ‘Alien’ is in their top tens of all-time, comfortable in the all-time Horror, Action and Sci-Fi top fives for me. It’s a tremendous film. ‘Aliens’ is also a belter and in two of those top tens. After that it went down hill a bit with the rather feminist and comical Alien 3 and the B-Movie distraction that was Alien V Predator, a videogame in all but name and unfairly panned. But it was deemed there was still enough life in the Alien Universe for a revisit and so another trilogy has arrived. The ‘hit and miss’ Prometheus (2012) kicked it all off and Alien: Covenant the direct sequel in the Ridley Scott trilogy, Alien Awakening the final film due in 2018. AC takes place on December 5th, 2104, 18 years prior to Alien, which takes place in 2122. That means you have seen lot of this before and that means the critics groan.
The Box Office

Alien – (Budget $11 million) – Gross $205m
Aliens – (Budget $18 million) – Gross $443m
Alien 3 – (Budget $55m) – Gross $138m
Alien V Predator (Budget $60million) –$172m
Prometheus – (Budget $120m) – $433m
Alien Covenant –(Budget $97 million) – Gross $247 m

Cast

Michael Fassbender ... David / Walter
Katherine Waterston ... Daniels
Billy Crudup ... Oram
Danny McBride ... Tennessee
Demián Bichir ... Lope
Carmen Ejogo ... Karine
Jussie Smollett ... Ricks
Callie Hernandez ... Upworth
Amy Seimetz ... Faris
Nathaniel Dean ... Hallett
Alexander England ... Ankor
Benjamin Rigby ... Ledward
Uli Latukefu ... Cole
Tess Haubrich ... Rosenthal
Lorelei King ... Voice of 'Mother' (voice)

Plot

Around eleven years after the futile and disastrous expedition to the distant moon LV-223 the deep-space colonization ship ‘Covenant’, packed with more than 2,000 colonists in cryogenic hibernation alongside the crew, set a course for the remote planet Origae-6, the plan to build a new world in what is charted as a sustainable environment for humans.

As they sleep an advanced android called David (Michael Fassbender) is in charge of the ship maintenance and navigation. During the fourth two year sleep cycle the crew is quickly awakened by David when the ship is badly damaged in a neutrino storm, the captain killed in the chaos. Whist fixing the outside of the ship they pick up a rogue transmission in English from deep space. De facto captain Mitch Hallett (Nathaniel Dean) decides to divert the ship from its original course to check it out after tracking the signal and the rest of the crew somewhat concerned with going in blind. It comes from a planet that is on the database and could be habitable for a new colony and so why not?

Above the planet they dispatch a small ship with most of the science and tech crew aboard to investigate below, most armed and ready for any threats. After a bumpy landing, as expected, the naive crew is soon in trouble and although no wildlife on the Earth like planet, yep, they are not alone…

Results

The big problem with this film is its set before ‘Alien’ and so that negative skewed timeline means the film has to retread old ground and so Alien cliché upon Alien cliché, one particular moment painfully so. But, of course, the crew don’t know how the face clamping, acid dripping Alien thing works and so all new to them. It’s not all new to us and so the critics got stuck in with the fans. It is a bit wearing now. As David says in the film - ‘one wrong note eventually ruins the entire symphony’, and there are plenty of bum notes here. To say the crew is naive is an understatement.

As with Prometheus the distraction from that now familiar fearsome monster thing comes from the not so cerebral creationist narrative and the idea the alien is a mere hybrid of humans and so we all came from the same place. A religious aspect is added to counter that coldness and that saw a few raised eyebrows. But Ridley Scott is a big fish and only on board if he gets to make the movie he wants so leeway given to get him to commit to all three films. That aspect obviously sets up the final film. The critics were also a bit rude about that muddled storyline to tie all the films together.

I enjoyed it to a point and as it’s a Ridley Scott film so it looks good with strong special effects and measured pacing and action. But you can see bits from the other films cut and pasted in all the way through and yet again our hero is the emancipated female who takes on their forced responsibility around incompetent men. Ridley Scott is known for that in his films and now pretty much the norm in most Hollywood Sci-Fi franchises. Even Dr Who is not sacred with the new female Doctor and her politically correct ethnic assistants being dumped on the writer’s to help sell it around the world. Still, that’s a better story than Harvey Wienstein.

It feels like two hour film and a lot more on the cutting room floor, judging by the deleted scenes extras on the disc. It does enough to keep you interested although you are not wowed by the films anymore as nothing new here. As good as Martian was there is no doubt JJ Abrahams and Christopher Nolan have drawn level with Scott in the Sci-Fi genre. I can still recommend it as you know you are going to see it as w still need this kind of movie to try and wow us.


RATINGS


Imdb.com – 6.5/10.0 (165,245votes)
Rottentomatos.com – 69% critic’s approval
Metacritic.com – 65% critic’s approval

Trailer

http://www.imdb.com/videoplayer/vi3276781081?playlistId=tt2316204&ref_=tt_ov_vi
Special Features


-Audio Commentary-

Scott and co discuss their film


-Phobos-

An outtake around crew testing for the mission.

Critics

MTV –‘Yet again a crew sniffs after a mysterious ping and sticks their nose in a deadly larva pod. Are our astronauts learning? God no. And if the audience expected a different plot, we're not learning, either’.

NY Times –‘
In space, nobody can you hear you roll your eyes’..

The Mail –‘It's weird and won't be for everyone, but Alien: Covenant is fun, strange, gross, kinda boring a little bit, and also SCARY’.


Newsweek –‘As redesigns go, Alien: Covenant is not ambitious, but it's roaringly, repulsively effective’.

Globe & Mail -‘The new film is intended to act as several things, none of them particularly admirable.

CNN com –‘Yet director Ridley Scott -- who birthed the original nearly 40 years ago as well as that last film -- plunges back into the latter's mythology, with equally uninspired and perhaps more blatantly derivative results’

Washington Times –‘Scott loses none of his ambition but by the end Alien: Covenant feels like what it ultimately is, the middle portion of a bigger story that ends with the creation of a perfect species’.

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Comments on this review

  • euphie published 14/11/2017
    e :o)
  • kojak123 published 11/11/2017
    E! Great review. I didn't hate this but it's hardly cemented its place as a classic. Mind you, it's going to be impossible to recreate the tension of the original "Alien" or the action of "Aliens"... people always expect perfection to be improved upon.
  • Nymphypig published 10/11/2017
    Never watched any of the alien films! Fab review :)
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Product Information : Alien Covenant (DVD)

Manufacturer's product description

Product Details

DVD Region: DVD

Director(s) (Last name, First name): Scott, Ridley

Classification: 15 years and over

Actor(s): Michael Fassbender, Noomi Rapace, Katherine Waterston, Guy Pearce, Billy Crudup

Production Year: 2017

EAN: 5039036081313

Video Category: Feature Film

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