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Review by wired.de (Spoilers)

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Tiwaz

May-07-2017 8:21 AM

 

Automatically translated:

"Alien: Covenant" could have been great - without the alien

As the first alien prequel, Prometheus was a disappointment for many fans.Director Ridley Scott has continued a sequel with Alien: Covenant . Although this is better by length, it has a central problem: the monster in the main role.

The prologue of Alien: Covenant shows the young Peter Weyland, founder of the megac company of the same name, who sent the space ship Nostromo to the planet Zeta-2-Reticuli in the first alien film of 1979. The CEO stands in a huge room with white walls, a gigantic window gives the view untamed nature, a flock of birds rises from a lake in a valley valley. A majestic sight whose visual language distinguishes the new film from Ridley Scott from the 38-year-old original.

Weyland activates in this scene for the first time the Androids David, which he himself has built. After the first test, David turns around and asks his creator, "When you created me, who created you?" When Weyland does not have an answer, David faces an insoluble dilemma: If he is an immortal android, why could he? Then created by a mortal man who has so many obvious errors?

By  dealing with such philosophical questions,  Alien: Covenant removes even further from the original films around the Xenomorph, as his predecessor  Prometheus (2012) did. No Horrorfilm wants to be the second  alien prequel, but a science fiction epic, which deals with the great themes of life.

 

Each species is at any rate devastated

 

That it was in Scott's prehistory to the alien series should no longer go to body horror, twisted corridors and the naked fear of the other, showed five years ago alone the title Prometheus . The film sought its model in Greek mythology, in that story about how the Titan of  the same name stole the fire from the gods . Scott used this as a metaphor for man's desire to meet his own creator and seize his technologies. 

Alien: Covenant also refers to literary and philosophical models. Time and again, the characters take time for extravagant dialogues, in which big ideas are cut. The realization that binds them all: every species, including mankind, is at any rate sacrificed. At the center of this discourse is the Android David, who sees himself as a life form of life superior to man - but not as a final stage of development.

The new alien  is not a bad movie, even if he has left many questions that he poses unanswered or not. But he could have been a much better film. What hurts him is the  alien trick. While the references to the original are still discreet at the beginning, they are growing more and more in the course of the film. In the end, Covenant  quickly spins all conventions of the series, for which there was no place before, but which can not be missed: alien eggs, facehugger, xenomorphs and a fight in the narrow corridors of a spaceship. Although all this is actually irrelevant to the narrative.

In the last half hour, Covenant  is almost like a complete alien movie. A nostalgia that feels wrong: in order to keep the complete alien metamorphosis in the short time, which remains the film, it is accelerated. Instead of hours or days, it takes only a few minutes in the prequel until the face of the facebugger becomes a xenomorph. Here you can see how much Scott was compelled to pay tribute to the original, but then broke his own rules, so that was possible at all.

The body horror in Covenant has a knock-on effect, because the film deals with completely different topics. Perhaps it would have been better to tell a very special science fiction story instead of forcing it into the corset of the Alien series. Then the film could have become another Ridley-Scott masterpiece - instead of just a negligible prequel.

Alien: Covenant has the same problems as many prehistoric films: They are supposed to explain something, that the original was only a marginal note, which remained unspoken, leaving room for interpretations. If such a detail is then embellished, it is often difficult to find a satisfactory conclusion. The question of the Covenant to answer: Where do the Xenomorphs come from in Alien ?

 The answer is not only boring, but also unnecessary. It was already included in the original from 1979 in the subtext: The universe is a terrible place in which unimaginable dangers lurk, and the individual man is only a gameball of the big conglomerate. A bitter realization, the  Alien: Covenant  diluted by his elaborate explanations.

Eine Theorie die nicht auf Etwas solidem basiert ist für gewöhnlich nur Geschwätz.

3 Responses to Review by wired.de (Spoilers)

Ingeniero

May-07-2017 9:15 AM

Thank you Tiwaz for posting this.

Tiwaz

May-07-2017 9:17 AM

You're welcome. :)

Eine Theorie die nicht auf Etwas solidem basiert ist für gewöhnlich nur Geschwätz.

centrosphere

May-07-2017 2:38 PM

"The answer is not only boring, but also unnecessary. It was already included in the original from 1979 in the subtext: The universe is a terrible place in which unimaginable dangers lurk, and the individual man is only a gameball of the big conglomerate"

I couldn't agree more.

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