As a big fan of Prometheus, this was the prequel-sequel I was dreading. All the promo stuff, all of Scott's comments made me fear the worst. That feedback from his last effort had burned him and rather continue to push on, into new ground, he was panicking, back-pedalling furiously into fan-pleasing territory. In (a safe) space, no-one can hear you scream.
So let's walkback the previous film's wild, weird mythology. Let's cut short the potential expansion into an even bleaker and more awful universe. Let's explicity show the who/what/why/when. Finally, every last mystery, or room for speculation in the franchise has been extinguished.
Forget the blasted, Lovecraftian hellscape of the 1979 film and its impossible, unknowable horrors. It turns out this nightmare creature was actually made in a cave, by recorder-playing, kung-fu-kicking Michael Fassbender. How can you reconcile that?
Nick's review is bang on. Like the other big franchises it's now just a mega-budget fan film with little idea what once made it great. It looks nice, sounds good, but it's a mishmash, with not enough restraint and too eager to please.
You want the proper alien, sorry, "Xenomorph"? Here he is! You like him, don't you? Look, here he is again! And again! I know keeping it hidden and mysterious is passé, but at no point was it treated as anything more than a mindless slashing monster.
Now I quite liked the proto/neo/whatevs being so spastically ferocious, they looked foetal, incomplete. But then the final alien comes out and behaves exactly the same way. There was no sense it was smart, or had its own motives and life cycle -- no sense it was anything other than another ravenous beast.
And I'm not really a 'lol plot holes' guy, but I did wonder, if David killed all the Engineers, then spent years creating the alien creature. How come the derelict ship on LV-426 has a cargo of his eggs? Did the doomed Engineer come back and, uh, accidentally fill his cargo hold with the fruits of David's labour before flying off, or did he just happen to do the exact same experiments out in deep space before crashing on the moon?
You know what, it's not totally awful. There's a couple of super-tense sequences. From initial planetfall and infection it's just 25 minutes of quick-cut frenetic action horror. There's some really crunchy, bloody eviserations. Dual Fassbender is neat, and the oddball downbeat ending is kind of fun. And damnit if I didn't get a bit of a thrill, seeing the 100% real and proper facehugger and alien on the big screen again.
I'll watch it again. And yeah I'll probably watch Alien 7.