Alien: Covenant

Alien: Covenant

I really wanted to like ALIEN: COVENANT. I certainly felt as though PROMETHEUS received an overly harsh pummelling from franchise fans. PROMETHEUS was at least a highly original effort that I found intriguing despite its flaws. I heard a few reviews of COVENANT that again pummelled the film, laying on thick a host of reasons for hating it, and decided to skip its theatrical release. I'm glad I did. After watching the film on Blu-Ray and sitting there dumbstruck, I decided to watch some of the special features that included the obligatory self-congratulatory, mastibatory remarks from the director and producers of the film and was left even more dumb struck. Hearing Ridley Scott proudly announce he was making a film that would "scare the shit out of people" and producer Mark Huffam declare that the screenplay does not "over-explain the origins of the xenomorph" I was doubly dumbstruck. ALIEN: COVENANT is dull, derivative, unconvincing and fantastically unscary. Terrified of losing the millennials, who are gonna check their phones no matter what's happening on screen, Scott has lost his nerve completely. Thus, in the time it took Harry Dean Stanton to locate Jonesy and meet his demise in 1979, Scott hurriedly kills umpteen characters in quick succession, leaving us with a final non-sensical few survivors we can expect to be picked off with no audience investment, sympathy or fanfare.

The most interesting character in the whole sorry mess is Fassbinder's David, a Nietzschean ubermensch hell-bent on killing the god(s) that created him. Although the film does not mention Nietzsche, it's use of Wagner gets the all-too obvious message across pretty quickly. I half expected to hear Richard Strauss' "Also sprach Zarathustra". It wouldn't have been out of place considering how unoriginal everything else in the film is. Fortunately David is so diabolical that he outranks the xenomorphs in the monster stakes.

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