Stuff I Watch in October: Alien: Covenant (2017)

alien: covenant

Happy October and welcome! All 31 days this month, I will be reviewing all the films I watch in the month of October. They’re mostly a selection of horror or suspense films in my own library or films and shows that have been recommended to me.

Please enjoy and leave a comment!

And if you missed any of our past reflections, take a look:

The Phantom of the Opera (1925)
Psycho (1960)
The Haunting (1963)
It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown (1966)
The Other (1972)
The Legend of Hell House (1973)
Young Frankenstein (1974)
The Rocky Horror Picture Show (1975)
Halloween (1978)
Alien (1979)
The Shining (1980)
Halloween II (1981)
The Evil Dead (1981)
Halloween III – Season of the Witch (1982)
Ghostbusters (1984)
Teen Wolf (1985)
Aliens (1986)
Big Trouble in Little China (1986)
Predator (1987)
The Monster Squad (1987)
The Witches of Eastwick (1987)
The Lost Boys (1987)
Evil Dead II: Dead By Dawn (1987)
Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers (1988)
They Live (1988)
Beetlejuice (1988)
Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers (1989)
Ghostbusters II (1989)
Predator 2 (1990)
The Addams Family (1991)
Alien 3 (1992)
Army of Darkness (1992)
The Nightmare Before Christmas (1993)
The Crow (1994)
Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers (1995)
From Dusk Till Dawn (1996)
Scream (1996)
Alien: Resurrection (1997)
Scream 2 (1997)
Halloween H20: 20 Years Later (1998)
The Sixth Sense (1999)
What Lies Beneath (2000)
Scream 3 (2000)
28 Days Later (2002)
Bubba Ho-Tep (2002)
The Ring (2002)
Halloween: Resurrection (2002)
Identity (2003)
AVP: Alien vs Predator (2004)
Shaun of the Dead (2004)
Snakes on a Plane (2006)
Alien vs Predator: Requiem (2007)
Halloween (2007)
Grindhouse (2007)
Halloween II (2009)
Predators (2010)
Absentia (2011)
Prometheus (2012)
The Cabin in the Woods (2012)
Escape From Tomorrow (2013)
Oculus (2013)
Before I Wake (2016)
Hush (2016)
Ouija: Origin of Evil (2016)

Our next film is…

WATCHING: Alien: Covenant (2017)

Alien: Covenant

DIRECTOR: Ridley Scott who should know better by now and just run as fast as he can, far away from this franchise, unitl they’ve gotten their heads together and have delivered a decent film.

WHAT IS IT?: Alien: Covenant is the fourth stand-alone film within the Alien franchise and the seventh overall film in the Alien universe if we’re counting the two AVP films.

THE PLOT: A decade following the events of Prometheus, the “Covenant” makes its way across the galaxy to the planet “Origae-6” with 2000 colonists in hypersleep and over 1000 human embryos in cold storage. Something goes wrong during a hypersleep malfunction and fries part of the ship, causing the crew to land at a nearby planet — which used to house the Engineer home world.

When they land, they find that the planet is dead, with all plant life gone and no sign of the Engineers. What IS there is David, the android from the Prometheus, who tells the crew of the Convenant that his colleague, Elizabeth Shaw (from the last film) is dead from when he and Shaw crashed on the planet and that the mutagenic organism the Engineers were carrying was accidentally released killing most, if not all life on the planet.

Additionally, the shit begins to hit the fan when the organism is unleashed on the crew, which causes the birth of more Neomorphs and, eventually, paves the way for the first Xenomorph to come to life. Worse yet, David seems to have an adoration for the creatures and believes they are humanity’s rightful successors.

WHAT DID CRITICS THINK?: They were generally impressed. The main complaint is that Alien: Covenant felt like a “greatest hits” album and didn’t do enough to take the franchise in a new direction. A few critics felt that Fox released this film as a “response to the Prometheus critics” — but also tried to appease the defenders of that film as well, and that it didn’t work.

WHAT DID I THINK?: We’ve been here before. This might have been a cool idea years ago when this series was still a few years old and had gotten through the “Marines kicking alien ass” phase. Unfortunately, this was saved for later and it’s formulaic and, worse yet, boring and not the least bit frightening.

Yes, like Prometheus, the film looks great and that’s mainly because Ridley Scott is back, attempting to guide this franchise back into relevance again. Hiring the scribe who wrote Skyfall was a step in the right direction and this feels more like an “Alien” film…but by the time the Alien shows up, you’ve already seen enough.

That, and the “pathogen” reasoning for the Alien’s existence STILL doesn’t make much sense and is just as bad as the Midichlorians plot device in the Star Wars prequel films.

The cast is fair with yet ANOTHER Ripley clone in Katherine Waterson who plays “Daniels” in the film. She’s not even close to being that iconic or even memorable, which I can easily say for the rest of the cast as well. Michael Fassbender is the best part of the film and he outshines everyone and everything, playing both David and the newest version of the “David” android, “Walter”.

A colleague of mine wrote an article begging with 20th Century Fox to just stop making Alien flicks. I’m starting to believe them.

Alien: Covenant is yet another lifeless dud in this long-running franchise.

GRADE: C-

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