Alien Horror Story: Covenant - RIDLEY SCOTT


“I think what we have to do is gradually drift away from the alien stuff.” Say what? Scott’s Alien: Covenant, which came out earlier this year, felt like a return to some legit old-school scares but failed to set the domestic box office ablaze (though, combined with international sales, it ended with north of $240 million in ticket revenue). “People say, ‘You need more alien, you need more face pulling, need more chest bursting,’ so I put a lot of that in Covenant and it fitted nicely. But I think if you go again you need to start finding another solution that’s more interesting. I think AI is becoming much more dangerous and therefore more interesting.”


That’s weird, he already kind of did the Alien-movie-without-Aliens in Prometheus, then went back around to the xenomorph again with Covenant. Now he wants to drop them again?


Gordon’s Personal Alien Universe Canon:

  1. Alien
  2. Aliens
  3. Spaceballs
  4. Alien: Isolation videogame

That is all.


I can’t imagine a movie franchise going down with less dignity than Jaws, but Ridley’s really making a go of it.


Aw man, it’s not quite that bad, not yet. I did enjoy Jaws 3D for what it was but Jaws 4, with its roaring great white that followed Elaine Brody to the Bahamas because of a blood feud with the family? That’s not even “so bad it’s good.”

We can at least say that the Alien movies still have a decent budget and look really good, unlike the increasingly B-movie aesthetic of the Jaws films.


Obligatory posting of Roger Ebert’s “Jaws: The Revenge” review.

I believe that the shark wants revenge against Mrs. Brody. I do. I really do believe it. After all, her husband was one of the men who hunted this shark and killed it, blowing it to bits. And what shark wouldn’t want revenge against the survivors of the men who killed it?




I thought the first act of Covenant was very good, too brief in fact. Cutting out a lot of the character building moments from the final release was a typically short-sighted mistake by whoever’s decision that was. When the shit first hits the fan, I thought Ridley delivered big-time. That entire build-up and attack sequence with the neomorphs was great stuff.

And then David appeared like a Messiah-like figure, and the movie crashed like the NCC-1701-D (yes I had to look that up) in Star Trek Generations. There are a few cool moments following it, but generally it never recovers from a general feeling of WTF. I mean, I can’t say I hated it, but it sure was disappointing. But anyway, I’m sure this is well-trodden ground for this thread.

In the end, even Prometheus was a better movie (a guilty pleasure, despite a few massive plot holes and bits of idiocy).


“Face pulling”?



Come on, they’re nowhere near that bad. As flawed (very) as Ridley’s last 2 movies were, they were an improvement over the previous 3 movies (including the AvP ones) and essentially every movie has been at least watchable – unlike, for instance, the Terminator movies, which have been even worse – and even they are nowhere near Jaws sequels level.

I better debate would be how the series ranks compared to, say, the Indiana Jones movies. Probably not as well, but I’d much rather rewatch any or all of the aliens movies than see Crystal Skull or even Temple of Doom (that one is close though).


Aww, I still like Temple of Doom. Even though the plot is basically lifted from Gunga Din.

“Fortune and glory, kid. Fortune and glory.”


I’m still kind of blown away that Temple of Doom seems to be held in such low regard by fans. When I was growing up my friends and I loved it, just about as much as the first one. It’s another of those things that I assumed everyone liked until I discovered the internet.


Yeah, same here. I mean, as a kid I knew Willie Scott was annoying, but I adored the opening sequence, the score, the bridge climax, etc. I even liked Short Round. (“You call him Doctor Jones!”)

It’s probably considered racist now, anyway, or at least supportive of hoary ‘white savior’ tropes.


Honestly, the only thing I really didn’t like about Temple of Doom was Kate Capshaw. Her character got annoying real quick. Still have not seen Crystal Skull and I think I’m going to keep it that way.

Also, I don’t count the AvP entries as part of the Alien franchise. To me, it’s like grouping Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein in along with the Karloff movies.


Dignity means something different from quality. The rest of your post is unfortunately founded on misconstruing his argument as being something that it very much isn’t.


I thought they jumped the shark with Jaws 3, myself.

Ba-dum-bum. I’ll see myself out…


It’s hard to beat Nazis and Judeo/Christian mythology at the end of the day.

The Ark of the Covenant. The Holy Grail. Some magic rocks.

Literal Nazis. Some Indian guys.


Fair enough that dignity means something different than quality, but the examples in my post are still correct in that context as well.


Jaws 2, 3 and 3D had worse and worse directors. I don’t think Indiana Jones was ever held in particularly high regard other than for being swashbuckling fun.

The difference with Alien is that Ridley Scott is the one actively making these movies, and coming out with ridiculous statements, all the while being thrown money by the studio to make the best movie he can.


Agreed - makes sense, and I better understand the original point you were highlighting. That said, while I’m punching Spielberg, I do think Jurassic Park is another example - while the original Alien had a level of class and drama beyond Jurassic Park, JP was played seriously and despite its flaws remains one of the best movies in its genre, while Spielberg’s Lost World was just embarrassing.

By “ridiculous statements” do you mean Ridley’s movies themselves, or are you talking about something he actually said?