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MOVIE: Alien Covenant brings franchise back

MOVIE: Alien Covenant brings franchise back

Clayton, I, too, am predisposed to like the latest entry in Ridley Scott's monster mash. But it can be! He was just a talking head at the end of Prometheus, so where is he now? But for all my problems with Alien: Covenant, you're right about that. The titular aliens - creatures that gestated inside humans to burst out of their victims' chests - were truly the stuff of nightmares. Covenant uses the mythology established by Prometheus and fuses it with the story and character types of Alien. I need to know more, but until I find the answers! There are a number of alien species in the Alien-verse (facehuggers, chestbursters), but what you're referring to is called a xenomorph.

The first two "Alien" movies were instant classics for their groundbreaking mix of science fiction, horror and suspense, anchored by Sigourney Weaver's ferocious heroine, Ripley.

So, how Alien-y was Prometheus?

The idea of "How much power do we dare cede to computers/robots in the future" was perfected almost 50 years ago in "2001", but at least Ian Holm's android was a real twist on the concept in the first "Alien" film.

Only one more day until Alien: Covenant comes out and all this hype can finally either be backed up by a film that warranted it or we can be disappointed and hope that never again will another Alien film be made. Which was kind of true then and kind of not true now.

Throughout the entire franchise, we've seen alien facehuggers infect humans, creating the Xenomorph that we are so accustomed to. There are just a few films in between.

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As in Prometheus, a religious subtext is introduced and then immediately abandoned. Indeed, Covenant continues the existential musings of Prometheus, delving into the impulse to be godlike both through creation and destruction. We get snapshots of who Danny is, whether it's through a moment of frustration or a feisty quip to her crew.

The humans in the story are a plucky crew of space explorers; a tight-knit group of couples piloting a ship of colonists to a new planet that holds their dreams of a fresh start and new life. Fassbender plays a dual role in this: Walter, a new, short-haired robot with a passable American accent, and David, an old, long-haired robot with an actual British accent. Yes, but he also plays another synthetic named Walter.

In the trailers for Alien: Covenant, so far, I haven't seen any engineers at all. "But I am fascinated by the possibility of what else is out there". Did David and Shaw split up? Aliens? Alien vs. Predator? It's sort of like the Star Wars prequels; whether you love or hate Covenant, it's going to be hard to go back to the originals without Covenant whispering in your ear the whole time.

But while "Alien: Covenant" has an ace up its sleeve - Michael Fassbender times two - the sheer number of tricks "Alien: Covenant" pulls out, some of them lifted from the five earlier installments, adds to a general sense of deja vu, which is no doubt made worse by the many "Alien" rip-offs that now adorn our galaxy. Like the fact that they're all married to each other.

After a cosmic event damages Covenant's solar sails, the crew's sleeper pods are activated - though during awakening, the ship's captain, Branson (James Franco), is killed in a pod malfunction.

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