Ridley Scott returns with Alien Covenant bringing his fans yet another R-rated masterpiece that he has become synonymous for.
FILM: ALIEN: COVENANT
CAST: Michael Fassbender, Katherine Waterston, Billy Crudup, Danny McBride, Demián Bichir
DIRECTOR: Ridley Scott
In space, no one can hear you scream. After nearly four decades, those words remain synonymous with the sheer, relentless intensity of Ridley Scott’s masterpiece of futuristic horror, ‘Alien’. Now, the father of the iconic franchise returns once more to the world he created to explore its darkest corners with ‘Alien: Covenant’, a “pulse-pounding new adventure that pushes the boundaries of R-rated terror.”
All is quiet aboard the spaceship Covenant. The crew and the rest of the 2000 souls aboard the pioneering vessel are deep in hyper-sleep, leaving the synthetic Walter to walk the corridors alone. The ship is en route to the remote planet Origae-6, where, on the far side of the galaxy, the settlers hope to establish a new outpost for humanity. The tranquility is shattered when a nearby stellar ignition shreds Covenant’s energy-collection sails, resulting in dozens of casualties and throwing the mission off course.
Soon, the surviving crew members discover what appears to be an uncharted paradise, an undisturbed Eden of cloud-capped mountains and immense, soaring trees far closer than Origae-6 and potentially just as viable as a home. What they’ve found, however, is actually a dark and deadly world full of unexpected twists and turns. Facing a terrible threat beyond their imagination, the embattled explorers must attempt a harrowing escape.
Set ten years after the events depicted in Scott’s 2012 hit ‘Prometheus’, ‘Alien: Covenant’ returns to the roots of the director’s groundbreaking saga with a uniquely terrifying tale filled with “white-knuckle adventure” and “monstrous new creatures”. With this, the sixth installment in the blockbuster series, the director edges ever closer toward revealing the mysterious origins of the mother of all aliens, the lethal Xenomorph from the original film.
From the beginning, Ridley Scott was out for blood.
“I think Ridley’s first line was, ‘We’re going to make a hard R-rated film, and we’re going to need a lot of claret,’ which is a term for film blood,” recalls ‘Alien: Covenant’ producer Mark Huffam. “That was the very first conversation – we’re out to scare the pants off everybody.”
Scott’s original ‘Alien’ remains a standard bearer for the horror genre, a psychologically taut, uncomfortably claustrophobic film, as lean and effective as the sleek, vicious beast that first stalked Ellen Ripley and the crew of the starship Nostromo back in 1979. “In a funny kind of way, I always thought of ‘Alien’ as a B-movie, really well done,” Scott says. “The subtext was pretty basic – it was seven people locked in the old dark house and who’s going to die first and who’s going to survive.”
For ‘Alien: Covenant’, the Oscar-nominated filmmaker sought to recapture the same foreboding atmosphere of constant danger and dread while also offering new insights that would add richness and depth to the larger ‘Alien’ mythology. That approach was necessary, he says, to keep the storytelling fresh and surprising. “You can’t keep being chased down a corridor by a monster – it gets boring,” Scott says. “It came to me that no one had asked the question, who made this and why. You could say monsters from outer space, gods from outer space, engineers from outer space invented it. They didn’t. ‘Alien: Covenant’s’ going to flip that around.”
Following in the sure footsteps of Sigourney Weaver’s Ripley, Katherine Waterston focused on her character Daniels’ place in the broader legacy of Scott’s female heroes. “Ridley Scott is a director who has always portrayed women in a really honest and believable way, he’s always been attracted to those kinds of characters,” Waterston says. “Daniels is the kind of person who gets clearer in a crisis. At the beginning of the film, Daniels is capable and smart and she’s good at her job, but I don’t think she sees herself any kind of heroic figure. As the events of the film unfold, she’s able to function and think clearly in those moments of crisis. It was easier for me to relate to her coming to realize that she was capable and brave, rather than that she was born ready for battle. I don’t know anybody like that.”