Alien: Covenant (2017) - Director Ridley Scott helms this sci-fi misfire, a direct sequel to 2012's Prometheus and the 8th overall Alien movie. In the year 2104, the colony spaceship Covenant is headed for a new planet. It has dozens of colonists in deep sleep hibernation, as well as a ship's crew of around 10. The ship is largely self-maintained, but is assisted by the android Walter (Michael Fassbender), who is forced to awaken the crew after a mishap. They soon receive a distress call and decide to check it out, finding an alien world with a dead civilization, as well as the android David (also Fassbender) who went missing with the ship Prometheus ten years earlier. But as a mysterious illness breaks out among the crew, and David begins acting very peculiar, the crew of the Covenant find themselves in a fight for their lives. Also starring Katherine Waterston, Danny McBride, Billy Crudup, Amy Seimetz, Carmen Ejogo, Demian Bichir, Jussie Smollett, Callie Hernandez, and cameos from Guy Pearce, James Franco, and Noomi Rapace.
All three films in this series that Scott has helmed have featured androids as threats as much if not moreso than aliens. This movie is really all about Fassbender, who I'm sure enjoyed the dual role, imbuing the two androids with enough differences to make them distinct. But I, and seemingly most of the rest of the potential audience, was hoping for more alien and less android. While the creature from the original films is still scary and visually interesting (when it's not too glossy via CGI), I had hoped for much more about the Engineers, the mysterious alien race partially explored in Prometheus and whose home planet we visit here. But they, along with their culture and civilization, are reduced to nothing in a few short moments.
Waterston and McBride make for more believable blue-collar type workers (which is keeping in tone with the original 1979 film), but their characters are largely unexplored, while Crudup, as the new captain raised in rank after a tragedy, gets stuck with a character meant to be unlikable due to his religious beliefs. That's a mistake in my opinion, although it would have been fine if they had found a way to tie his beliefs in with the notions of godhood discussed by the androids. I also had problems with other aspects of the script, namely the routinely stupid decisions these purported professionals make, the total lack of bio-hazard awareness or protections while exploring an alien world for the first time, and a stupid insistence on having multiple characters smoke. How likely would smokers be asked to join a space program now, let alone in a hundred years? This is a very underwhelming viewing experience. 6/10