As an aficionado of just about anything 'Alien,' Ridley Scott’s latest film in the 38-year old franchise, ‘Alien: Covenant,’ may be my most anticipated movie of 2017. Five years after 2012's 'Prometheus,' which I thought was pretty darn good (so sue me) even if it had too much "Space Jockey" (Engineer) and too little Alien, a new installment is long overdue as far as I'm concerned. And the gorier the better!
‘Alien: Covenant’ takes place in 2104, about 10 years after the events which expired, I mean transpired in ‘Prometheus.’ Centering on the crew of the space ship “Covenant” in cryogenic stasis entasked with transporting 2,000 settlers to a habitable planet dubbed Origae-6, only to be rudely awakened prematurely to deal with an on-board crisis before responding to a garbled and mysterious transmission from an unknown planet nearby which just so happened to be suitable for human habitation without the need for terra-forming. Sounds familiar? Needless to say, they encounter hostile Xenomorphs of various types on the planet.
While ‘Alien: Covenant’ is undeniably a direct sequel to the divisive ‘Prometheus,’ it can also be considered to be a prequel to ‘Alien’ and hews more closely to the 1979 original than perhaps any of the other films in the official Alien canon. With deadly Xenomorphs skittering around the confined corridors of Covenant preying on soft fleshy things that die messily, the claustrophobia-induced anxieties and nail-biting suspense of that original Ridley Scott film are rekindled. It's also perhaps by no accident that the movie’s heroine, Daniels "Dany" Branson (Katherine Waterston, whose pedigree is impeccable given her lineage), somewhat resembled the young Ellen Ripley.