Alien: Covenant ★★½

This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.

This review may contain spoilers.

My gawd is this movie flawed. The franchise - in Ridley Scott's hands - is practically dead.

I'd high hopes that he'd found his mojo after The Martian but he had a great script to work from in that movie. In Alien: Covenant, he has an awful smorgasbord of crappy dialogue and poorly rendered throwbacks to Alien and Aliens (and even Alien 3, with a dull xenomorph POV technique that's frankly terrible).

The movie starts with a typographic nod to the original masterpiece, but that's where the similarities end. (When the typography came up on screen, I thought, 'You'd better earn the right to connect this movie to the original in such an iconic way, Mr Scott, or I'll be mighty unhappy.)

There are some minor positives to find, if you look hard enough. I enjoyed Michael Fassbender's performance(s), and Katherine Waterston is plucky enough, if a bit Ripley-lite. The movie looks fantastic - natch - and the music is magnificent. I'd listen to that soundtrack again without hesitation.

The other characters are forgettable, though and the xenomorph - with its inexplicable accelerated gestation period and its standuppyness - is dumb. And you won't believe that Scott filmed a shower sex / death scene; I thought the reel had been swapped at that point for Species II.

I'm giving this movie two and a half stars because despite its NUMEROUS flaws, it actually entertained me, was technically excellent and was better than...gulp...Prometheus.

Scott has another one in the works. I'll see it, of course, but it will probably be the final nail in the Alien coffin.

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