Head’s up, we are going to bury the lede here (because the history of the film franchise series in question is a worthy starting point)!
You have your alien creatures … they leap forth from their leather-like egg pouches, implant themselves on your face (affectionately dubbed “facehuggers”), implant an embryo, which gestates and bursts through the unlucky host’s chest. Brilliant!
We were introduced to this creature — this ALIEN — back in 1979 by director Ridley Scott and screenwriter Dan O’Bannon in Alien … which signaled the arrival of the kick-ass heroine Ripley (Sigourney Weaver). The egg-laying queen was a force to be reckoned with in filmmaker James Cameron’s 1986 sequel, Aliens. Alien3 in 1992 was a disaster and Alien: Resurrection (1997) was an end-of-cycle “monster movie.”
When you have a creature this magnificent you simply can’t let it go, so the studio followed this original cycle with director Paul W. S. Anderson’s 2004 crossover, Alien vs. Predator, which was a solid reboot of the series, but the follow-up in 2007, Aliens vs. Predator: Requiem, was a dark muddled mess. This left the Alien film franchise homeless once again.
And that brought us full-circle back to filmmaker Ridley Scott, who delivered in 2012, Prometheus, “a prequel” to the series. It was a magnificent new branch to the series — everything, however, seemed so much more advanced than the original film, even thought it is a prequel. No matter, it worked and series fans loved it.
One more thing, in parallel to the alien creature, the original film, Alien, also introduced us to a member of the crew (played by Ian Holm), who was an android. He (it) malfunctioned and was a somewhat creepy counterpoint to the terror of the alien creatures that the crew of the Nostromo had to battle.
The “synthetic” life form, played by Lance Henriksen, turned hero in Aliens and then was dropped as a component of the series in all subsequent iterations.
That was until Prometheus, which reintroduced the android to the series in the form of the malevolent David (brilliantly portrayed by Michael Fassbender), who is well-aware that he (it) is far superior to the human beings who created him … and intends to do something about that!
Who is the greater terror … the alien creatures or the creature of our own making?
Now to the lede … 20th Century-Fox Home Entertainment announced this passed week that director Ridley Scott’s Alien: Covenant, the sequel to Prometheus, will be heading to the home entertainment marketplace as a three-SKU product offering on Aug. 15.
The ARR is a quick-to-market 88 days and domestic ticket sales currently stand at $73.7 million.
Planned for release are a stand-alone DVD edition, a Blu-ray/DVD Combo Pack and a 4K Ultra HD/Blu-ray Combo Pack.
Fassbender is back as David, and in a duel role, he also plays Walter, the good android (it is all in the programming, you know) and a member of the crew of the “colony” ship, Covenant (a more Spartan version of the Avalon from Passengers). They are bound for a new planet when they get a distress call and the ship is diverted to investigate.
You know it. I know it. We all know it. Diverting to an unknown planet in answer to a mysterious transmission can only lead to disaster for all involved (the crew members are, of course, the new “victim pool”).
So what has David been up to? And what of Shaw (Noomi Rapace) … she survived the massacre of her crewmates, what was her fate (oh, you do not want to know).
Alien: Covenant really delivers. And goes right to the heart of it: Which is more terrifying, the monsters we create; the ones right here at home … or the monsters that might be lurking out there in the vastness of space? It’s humans versus android versus alien creatures and the ending leaves it open for another edition in the Prometheus offshoot of the venerable Alien film franchise series (expect it in theatres in 2019).
As to bonus goodies, filmmaker extraordinaire, Ridley Scott, provides commentary, there are a dozen deleted or “extended” scenes, there’s a making-of documentary titled “Master Class: Ridley Scott” and two additional multi-part featurettes — “USCSS Covenant” and “SECTOR 87 - PLANET 4.”