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Alien: Covenant is incoherent and pointlessly complicated

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A scene from

And while the latest installment in Ridley Scott's 21st century revival of the series offers a heavy dose of the expected extraterrestrial gore, the film resonates not because of its scares or effects, but thanks to the simple fact that the filmmaker wholly commits to building an atmosphere of sadness and dread around it.

For all you know I could be wrong and Convenant could earn more than Prometheus. But as soon as they land on the seemingly peaceful planet, all hell breaks loose and the crew soon find they're in for the fight of their lives when they discover the sinister truth about why things are so quiet on what was surely once a habitable planet. In this movie, we hardly get to know the characters, which means we hardly care about their plight.

The legendary director still remembers audience reactions from 1979, following a preview of the original Alien.

By getting the ball rolling on the alien being brought to life at the end of Prometheus, his actions are likely to carry some major consequences in Alien: Covenant. Prometheus wasn't universally loved, but it threw a few new twists and quirks in the pot that made the final dish taste a little newer and original. David, the resident android aboard Prometheus (played by Michael Fassbender), uses that virus to infect a fellow crewmember, who then unwittingly proceeds to impregnate Noomi Rapace's character with a tentacled alien that then "impregnates" the Engineer, and thus is born the beginnings of what will become the xenomorph.

The following is part of Kim Holcomb's conversation with actors Billy Crudup, Danny McBride and Demián Bichir. You get the drift quickly here. Yeah, there was a lot of birthing going on. Like Prometheus and Scott's Alien, Covenant finds the crew of a deep-space vessel investigating a mysterious, possibly risky planet (in this case, on a fairly flimsy pretext) and discovering some horrific monsters lurking there.

When it comes to Alien: Covenant the good news for Scott is Prometheus is so bad that there is nowhere to go but up and this one is up. Watching it happen again, in this movie, made me just wonder why we're supposed to be exhilarated by that again.

The creatures show up, do their thing and the humans react accordingly. Best lower your expectations.

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. The cast here is picking up the scraps out of a half-cool freezer.

In the trailers for Alien: Covenant, so far, I haven't seen any engineers at all. The team decides to investigate to see if this really is the paradise they're seeking to start a new colony.

"One of the big deals for me was to come to Hollywood", the Brit recalls.

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 is screening in cinemas while Alien: Covenant is scheduled to release on May 19.

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