After her last encounter, Ellen Ripley crash-lands on Fiorina 161, a maximum security prison. When a series of strange and deadly events occur shortly after her arrival, Ripley realizes that she brought along an unwelcome visitor.
Charles S. Dutton,
200 years after her death, Ellen Ripley is revived as a powerful human/alien hybrid clone who must continue her battle against the aliens. Along with a crew of space pirates, Ripley must also prevent the deadly aliens from reaching Earth.
After a space merchant vessel perceives an unknown transmission as a distress call, its landing on the source moon finds one of the crew attacked by a mysterious lifeform, and they soon realize that its life cycle has merely begun.
Ellen Ripley is rescued by a deep salvage team after being in hypersleep for 57 years. The moon that the Nostromo visited has been colonized, but contact is lost. This time, colonial marines have impressive firepower, but will that be enough?
During an archaeological expedition on Bouvetøya Island in Antarctica, a team of archaeologists and other scientists find themselves caught up in a battle between the two legends. Soon, the team realize that only one species can win.
Almost eleven years after the futile and disastrous expedition on the distant moon LV-223, the deep-space colonisation vessel Covenant equipped with more than 2,000 colonists in cryogenic hibernation, sets a course for the remote planet Origae-6 with the intention to build a new world. Instead, a rogue transmission will entice the crew to a nearby habitable small planet which resembles The Earth. The unsuspecting members of Covenant will have to cope with biological foes beyond human comprehension. Ultimately, what was intended as a peaceful exploratory mission, will soon turn into a desperate rescue operation deep into the cold infinite space.Written by
I seem to be in a bit of a minority in quite liking Ridley Scott's last Alien outing - 2012's "Prometheus": a heady, if at times ponderous, theory to the origins of man. The first hour of that film is really good. But for me, what made the original 1979 film so enthralling was the life cycle of the 'traditional' Xenomorph aliens through egg to evil hatchling to vicious killing machine. This somewhat got lost with "Prometheus" with a range of alien-like-things ranging from wiggly black goo to something more familiar... and frankly I was confused. Some - repeat, some - of the explanation for that diversity of forms in "Prometheus" is made clearer in the sequel "Alien: Covenant".
"Covenant" (named again after the spaceship at its heart) is a follow-on sequel to "Prometheus", so it is worth re-watching it if you can before a cinema trip. At the end of that film we saw Elizabeth Shaw (Noomi Rapace, "The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo") and a reconstructed android David (Michael Fassbender, "Steve Jobs") flying off in an alien craft still loaded with its cargo of nasty alien black goo. Shaw had a mission to seek out The Engineer's home world - named "Paradise" - to find out why after creating man they were intent on going back to finish them off with a WMD. A neat prologue film has been released (see the full review on bob-the-movie-man.com) which documents this.
We pick up the action 10 years later in a totally improbable 2104. (Give us a break writing team! We know they won't have got through planning permission on the third Heathrow runway by then, let alone invented interplanetary travel...! 2504, maybe!)
Daniels (Katherine Waterston, "Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them") has just suffered a sudden bereavement (an uncredited James Franco -- blink and you'll miss him). She has also been rudely awakened from hypersleep due to a sudden system mishap: no, not to find Chris Pratt there like "Passengers", but by the ship's android Walter (also Michael Fassbender) who's also revived the rest of the crew. While effecting repairs they receive a garbled John Denver track mysteriously beamed to them from an earth-like planet not too far away. As this might be a suitable homestead, and as spending weeks more in hypersleep is unattractive, Captain Oram (Billy Crudup, "Spotlight") votes to check it out, against Daniels' strong objections. Needless to say, this proves to be a BIG MISTAKE as the new film neatly links hands with the first film.
It's a far more action-oriented film than "Prometheus" and has enough jump scares and gore to please most Alien fans. A shower scene towards the end of the film is particularly effective and will likely put an end to relaxing shower sex for many people for good!
It also looks visually stunning (cinematography is by Dariusz Wolski ("The Martian", "Pirates of the Caribbean") with location shooting in Milford Sound in New Zealand. The special effects are also a cut- above the normal CGI with a devastated Pompeii-like city, a picture of blacks and greys, being particularly effective.
In the acting stakes it is really all down to Waterston and Fassbinder. I wasn't a great fan of Waterston in "Fantastic Beasts" - a bit insipid I thought - but here she adopts Ripley's kick-ass mantle with ease but blends it beautifully with doe-eyed vulnerability. Some of her scenes reminded me strongly of Demi Moore in "Ghost". Fassbinder is fascinating to watch with his dual roles of Walter and David, both slightly different versions of the same being. And the special effects around the Fassbinder-on-Fassbinder action, tending somewhat towards the homoerotic in places, are well done.
Unfortunately the rest of the crew get little in the way of background development, which limits the impact of the inevitable demises. They are also about as clinically stupid as the spaceship crew in "Life" in some of their actions; I guess you could put some of this down to the effects of panic, but in other cases you might see it as a simple cleansing of the gene pool in Darwinian fashion.
Also making uncredited guest appearances are Guy Pearce as Weyland (in a flashback scene) and Noomi Rapace.
Music is "by" Jed Kurzel, but to be honest he does little than wrap around reversions of the original Jerry Goldsmith classics: not that this is a bad thing, since those themes are iconic and a joy to hear again on the big screen.
My expectations for this movie were sky-high, as it was hinted as a return to form for the franchise. And in many ways it was, with a "man, Gods and androids" theme adding depth to the traditional anatomical-bursting gore. But to be honest, some of the storytelling was highly predictable, and I left slightly disappointed with the overall effort. If my expectations were an 11/10, my reality was more like a 7/10. It's still a good film, and I look forward to watching it again. But perhaps this is a franchise that has really run its course now for Mr Scott and he should look to his next "Martian"-type movie for a more novel foundation to build his next movie "log cabin on the lake" on.
(For the full review - with graphics and video - please visit bob-the- movie-man.com. Thanks).
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