It really shouldn’t be this hard to make another great Alien movie.
Alien Covenant is the follow up to the disappointing Prometheus with both being prequels to the original Alien. It follows a group of people heading to colonize a planet. During their journey, they make a stop to investigate a distress call (stop me if you’ve seen this before in an Alien movie). As they always do when people do dumb stuff like that, bad things happen and we have a reason to see the iconic Alien back on screen.
I’ll start off by saying I’m going to review this movie without being biased on the fact I don’t think this or Prometheus needs to exist. I don’t want to know where the Aliens come from. Alien and Aliens are some of the best sci-fi movies ever made and didn’t need prequels. But people that make these things don’t care what I think. Go figure. So with that said, this movie is much better than Prometheus. The problem with that statement is that Prometheus is awful, so it’s not saying much. I like the angle this movie takes in terms of telling it’s story. Most of the characters aren’t developed much. but several of them are particularly interesting. Without spoiling much, Michael Fassbender plays sort of a duel role and is the best part of the movie. It was also nice to see the Alien back on screen in its true, terrifying form. If nothing else, the movie is entertaining through its runtime.
Covenant has a lot of problems. First of all, the Alien is not used enough at all. Most of the movie features other monsters that are relatively boring comparatively before the actual Alien is finally revealed near the end. It also misses a lot of opportunities. The first Alien movie is one of the most terrifying movies ever made. It is sci-fi horror at its best. This one tends to shy away from the horror element. It tries a couple of times and is genuinely scary, but it could have taken it to a whole other level to really keep the audience on the edge of their seats. The ending is also extremely predictable and I think most people will be able to see it coming.
All in all, Alien Covenant is an enjoyable entry into the franchise. Unfortunately, it is really going to rely on another sequel/prequel to prove how good or bad it ultimately is. Honestly, this movie kind of feels like a midseason episode of Game of Thrones (or similar TV show). Some stuff happens but it feels like it is really just set up for bigger and better things. We’ll see what ends up coming of that. But for now because it’s entertaining, but just doesn’t quite live up to its potential, Alien Covenant gets a 3.25/5.