Ridley Scott: Back To His Roots

    As the release of Alien: Covenant draws nearer, the excitement continues to build, but also the questions.

    Ridley Scott’s Alien prequel film Prometheus was released in 2012, but while it was fairly well received by critics, garnering a 72% on Rotten Tomatoes, fans were not impressed.

    Most expected the prequel to be much more connected to the 1979 film. Ridley Scott’s original Alien terrified audiences and brought something new to the table of film. The film was hit and has since become one of the greatest science fiction movies of all time.

    Prometheus did not quite live up to the expectations.

    So the questions are now flying around in a flurry. Ridley Scott has said you will see all of the pieces of the Alien franchise in this new film, but what will that mean for Alien: Covenant?

    Will the film satisfy audiences and fans alike? Or will it falter?

    Science Fiction In His Roots

    Of course we all know Ridley Scott is no stranger to science fiction. Aside from the 1979 classic Alien, the director is also behind the critically acclaimed film Blade Runner.

    So he can definitely do science fiction, no question there. But for some, after Prometheus, people began to wonder. Maybe he shouldn’t have gone back into the franchise. The previous two Alien films has flopped and were poorly received.

    But a few years after the 2012 prequel, Ridley Scott released his Oscar-nominated film The Martian. The film starred Matt Damon as an astronaut stranded on Mars. The film was a huge hit, but also proved that Ridley Scott could indeed still do science fiction and do it well.

    The Martian’s success and the fact the film was praised for both its directing and script is very promising and points towards more of the same for Alien: Covenant.

    Ridley Scott is an incredible filmmaker. So years of working on projects outside of the science fiction realm are in no way going to harm the outcome of Alien: Covenant. For a director with such immense talent, Scott will sufficiently be able to harness his skills and produce a quality film.

    What We Know We Can Expect

    The big aspect we definitely do not need to worry about in any way is the technical quality of Alien: Covenant.

    Of course none of us have seen the film, but look at Scott’s track record. All of his films are visually impressive and well directed.

    In particular look at such films as The Martian, Exodus: Gods and Kings, and also Prometheus. Despite your feelings or thoughts towards Prometheus and putting aside the confusing story of Exodus, you have to admit that the visuals of all three of these movies are fantastic.

    Polish cinematographer Dariusz Wolski first worked with Ridley Scott on Prometheus and has worked on every one of Scott’s films since. Wolski is the cinematographer for Alien: Covenant, so one can expect the film’s visuals to satisfy.

    Wolski has also worked extensively with director Gore Verbinski, having served as cinematographer for the first three Pirates of the Caribbean films. Those films were also quite visually impressive.

    Of course, the visuals of Alien: Covenant aren’t the only aspect we can expect to be on par. Ridley Scott’s directing style is unique and specific, and since working with Wolski, his films have felt incredibly smooth and flawless.

    Actors seem quite comfortable in their roles and each and every frame is deliberate and assists in telling the story. These are staples of a Ridley Scott film.

    Ties To The Franchise

    Another question that has been raised is how much will Alien: Covenant truly connect to the rest of the films.

    Ridley Scott has gone on record saying the film will include: “…[the] egg, face-hugger, chest-burster, and then the big boy.” So of course this will bring all the fan favourite elements into the mix, but what of the overall story?

    The film is definitely a sequel to Prometheus, as the characters of Shaw (Noomi Rapace) and David (Michael Fassbender) are signed on to the film.

    But the bigger question is how will it tie back into the original Alien film?

    Scott has said he would like to do two more films after Alien: Covenant, which will lead back into the 1979 film, connecting all of the films together. Scott also revealed these new films (including Prometheus) will reveal who exactly created the xenomorphs aliens.

    This could be quite interesting as the story could go as far as to explain the crashed ship discovered in the original Alien film. The origins of the “Space Jockey” in the pilot’s seat have always been in question with many theories being put forth.

    Could Alien: Covenant and its potential sequels finally answer that question. We’ll have to wait a while to know the answer, but the possibility is exciting nonetheless.

    May 19th, 2017

    Alien: Covenant is due out on May 19th, 2017. So of course all of our questions will be officially answered then. But until that time, speculation will continue to run wild.

    Some things, however, are certain. Dariusz Wolski’s camera team will make the film look beautiful. Ridley Scott’s style will be a satisfying sight. Michael Fassbender will kill it playing two different androids.

    Alas, the most important questions still remain. But do not fear. Alien: Covenant has a massive amount of potential to not only be the movie the fans want, but a quality film as well.

    So for now, we’ll have to wait patiently (or impatiently) for the film’s release and discover the answers to all of our questions and then decide on its quality for ourselves.

    See you on May 19th, 2017.

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    • Connor Campbell

      Screenwriter

      Connor Campbell is a writer/director, who lives in Calgary, Canada.

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