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Review: Alien: Covenant (2017) — A Chest-Bursting Return to Form for the Xenomorphs

Luke Miksa finds out if Alien: Covenant has what it takes to return a long mediocre franchise to past glory.

Alien-Covenant

Following 2012’s disappointing Prometheus, director Ridley Scott returns to the well once again, continuing the origin story of the Alien franchise with Alien: Covenant; a series which began all the way back in 1979 with horror classic Alien, launching Scott’s career in the progress.

Alien Covenant crew 2

Not a spoiler: Most of these people die.

The year is 2104 — fifteen years since the events of Prometheus — and the colony ship Covenant is carrying two-thousand colonists and human embryos to the remote planet Origae-6. After a devastating neutrino storm hits the ship, the crew is woken from their stasis by the synthetic Walter (Michael Fassbender), who was overseeing the trip on its extended journey. The crew, including new captain Oram (Billy Crudup), scientist Daniels (Katherine Waterston), pilot Tennessee (Danny McBride), and security Lope (Demian Bichir), intercept a human transmission from a nearby planet, and decide to investigate the source. Once on the surface, the crew must begin a desperate escape when they find out that there are more dangers on the planet than first expected, but not before dealing with the source of the transmission: the wreck of an Engineer ship, which was piloted by Elizabeth Shaw and synthetic David from the Prometheus mission.

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Retro Review: Legend (1985)

This article was published on the original Sorry I’m Late.com on 30/08/09.

Legend

Legend is director Ridley Scott’s attempt at 80’s style fantasy, starring Ferris Bueller’s Mia Sara as Princess Lili and as her love interest a pre-Top Gun Tom Cruise as forest dweller Jack. In a convoluted series of events, Jack takes Lili to see some sacred unicorns – which he shouldn’t for some reason – and then she proceeds to touch one – which she shouldn’t for some reason. This turn of events leads minions of the Lord of Darkness (Tim Curry, in top form) to chop off the stallion’s horn – an item of coveted power – and kidnap Princess Lili, both to be brought before Darkness in a master plan to bring eternal night to the world. Now the ‘heroic‘ Jack, aided by his misfit band of elves and dwarves, must rescue the princess and save the world from its inevitable pitch-black doom.

The massive problem with this movie, and there are copious issues, is the fact that it takes so much pleasure in being so damn dark that there’s minimal fun to be had – a crucial element of fantasy. Take similar genre films from the time – Labyrinth had the music, Willow and Princess Bride had charm and characterisation, and the one thing that they all shared was a sense of wonder. Legend is too dark and scary for children yet the plot and pacing is too juvenile for adults.

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