Alien: Covenant ★½

Remember when Danny Mcbride was the biggest concern we had for this film? Halcyon days, in retrospect.

In all honesty, I'm surprised how much leeway this is being given in some quarters. It's a terrible film. 

Dead simple dichotomy: in Alien/Aliens, the characters do the logical thing for the most part, only failing in simple human ways, being inferior to the alien, or being sabotaged. In Prometheus and this pile of whoopsie, every single decision is a stupid decision.

If you have to move your plot from point to point by having characters do the opposite of what they should do just to make it happen, you make your script into a dud and turn your protagonists  into simpletons. 

So as they merely advance the plot, these characters barely exist as individuals; there are b-tier cannon fodder placeholders you've hardly seen before dying left and right, so you don't care.  The poor bastards who can actually act and deserve the paycheque have to chew through pounds of bullshit dialogue whilst trying to do a silk purse/sow's ear magical reversal. 

The stupidity of the characters' actions mirrors the essential mediocrity of the plot. Stealing beats and cues from Aliens now - something Scott didn't even have a hand in, naughty - but failing to understand why those things worked, leaves us with dross. 

What really boils my piss is the lazy world building. The film looks pretty, but snoozery abounds: the cameras on the protagonists' packs have GoPro mounts. Fucking GOPRO MOUNTS. The displays are all flatscreens, despite Alien having curved CRTs. They use touchscreens rather than the buttons we see in the original etc etc. 

Sounds nit picky, but If Scott can wave his hand and go 'Fine, that'll do' because he cares so little, why should we? 

I genuinely think we're in a Phantom Menace/AOTC situation here, where people came out of the sequel going, "Well, that was better, wasn't it?" but then gradually realised that just because it had 100% more fan service and action scenes, those things couldn't stop it being a turd. 

Go on, off you toddle. Come back when you've realised just how shit this is. Go on, I'll be waiting.

Treble liked this review