Archive for the ‘Science Fiction’ Category

I’ve contributed an article to Let Your Geek Sideshow, a blog from Sideshow Collectibles. This article is about the science behind the fiction in the Jurassic World franchise. Check it out! There’s all kinds of cool stuff on this blog – podcasts, lists, features about your favorite monsters and superheroes, and much more. And if you’re a collector, you’re in luck – Sideshow produces the most quality fan memorabilia on the market.

https://www.sideshowtoy.com/geek/jurassic-fact-the-science-of-fiction-in-jurassic-park/

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Connections are made

Microscopic conscience

The mechanized soul

 

I see goodness

I witness the coming together

Of souls, minds, ideas

 

But are the thoughts our own?

 

Perhaps not for long

When, through hunks of metal

Consciousness is duplicated

 

Does the soul exist?

If we can, in fact, create it?

Your network–

Streaming doubt into my veins

There are ghosts, surrounding…

 

They are data. They are bytes

Bytes and bots–

As the Spirit of God is breathed over the waters

And as the wind moves reality

We know not, we see not

Where the invisible originates

 

These thoughts are cliche

Familiar, but it’s true

Not science fiction

I love Star Trek. I adore Godzilla. The two of them combined? In anime form? Not as much. I mean, I liked Guyver: Bio-Booster and Yu-Gi-Oh!, so I know that anime can be cool. In the anime world, ANYTHING can happen, and this is both its great appeal and its downfall. Sometimes, it’s just too much – too many plot lines, too much dialogue, too many impossible scenarios. I feel the same way about the CGI saturated climate of American cinema.

With Godzilla: Planet of the Monsters (now available on Netflix – check it out), these elements exist in abundance, but they are contrived much more effectively than they were in previous attempts to “anime-ize” Godzilla. Masaaki Tezuka’s Godzilla X Megaguirus and Godzilla X Mechagodzilla flirted with this a bit at the turn of the century. They were live-action, sure, but the silliness, the excessive dialogue, the exaggerated character emotion, and the over the top-ness definitely put these two films in the category of Japanese animation. But with this new Godzilla, actually going all out and becoming a full blown anime epic, the excessive elements are pulled off way more effectively. This is due to the fact that with hand drawn frames (it’s hybridized with CGI in this movie, but it still LOOKS like a cartoon), the filmmakers are not under any constraints at all. Want a 1,000 foot Godzilla destroying flying motorcycles that just blew up his baby, but it’s too difficult to do with suit-mation and CGI? No problem. Draw it. That’s something I really miss about movies. Everything is computerized now, but I miss stuff like Bambi and The Lion King. Yes, a completely different category from science-fiction, but my point is that if you’re doing a cartoon, the only limit is your imagination. And though I have a few problems with this latest entry into the Goji saga, it puts a smile on my face to think about the imagination behind it.

A bunch of kaiju (Kamacuras, Rodan, others) start attacking mankind, destroying everything in their wake. Then, a ferocious being more massive and destructive than anything in existence – Godzilla – rises from the ocean and begins to decimate both the remaining humans and the other monsters. Two technologically advanced alien races arrive on the planet, promising to destroy the beast in exchange for resettlement on Earth. One of these races, the Exifs, are a highly spiritual people who worship a powerful deity and attempt to convert the Earthlings to their beliefs. They look like a cross between Star Trek’s Vulcans and Middle-Earth’s Elves, which really bummed me out. Their ears and their attitudes are some of the most blatant ripoffs I have ever seen. The other aliens are the Bilsards, and these ones are much cooler. They are even inspired by the Black Hole 3 aliens from the original Godzilla vs. Mechagodzilla, saying they hail from a distant galaxy on the third world down from a black hole. Mechagodzilla itself is also seen briefly in Monster Planet, but it is blown away by the big G before it can activate. The three species, human, Exif, and Bilsard, join forces to defeat Godzilla, but, surprise surprise, they fail. Their only solution is to leave Earth and find a new world to populate. In their time, they are gone for 22 years, but by the time they go back to Earth to try and defeat the monsters again, 20,000 years have passed on our blue, kaiju infested marble. The plants and animals of the world are beginning to evolve, and they are taking on the characteristics of Gojira. A man named Haruo, who watched the beast kill his family when he was four years old (which seems to be a recurring theme in many Godzilla movies), is hell-bent on revenge, and he has a high tech plan in mind to rid the planet of the Goliath once and for all. Does he succeed? Get on Netflix and find out.

So, how does the Gorilla-Whale hold up this time around, in anime form? Pretty darned good. He’s not quite as imposing as he was in Shin-Godzilla, but he looks exactly how he should – mean, large, and in charge. Some have said that he looks a bit like an old wrinkled man in the face, but it’s easy to get used to after looking at it for a while. I think it’s actually neat – he looks like a wise (if extremely evil) dragon straight out of Chinese mythology.

His screen time leaves a lot to be desired, though. I think he’s fully visible in this movie even less than he was in the 2014 incarnation. What follows is that the movie seems to not even really be ABOUT Godzilla. It’s more about the struggle of humanity, and it made me realize something. The creature known as Godzilla has always been portrayed as a metaphor for nuclear weapons, but he’s actually a metaphor for much more than that. He is an archetype for any struggle that any one person or society is compelled to overcome. I view his villainous role in this movie as an allegory for my own personal problems – my demons to be defeated – and I’ve never really looked at it that way before, even after twenty years of watching kaiju movies. It took THIS – this anime, this cartoon – to make me realize that. A simple concept, yes, one almost not even worth writing about. But it actually kind of meant a lot to me.

So, the vibe of this movie, as well as the last couple of films, seems to be that the human element is the focus, not the monster element. Has it been well-executed? Are the human plot lines and the dialogue well written? Yes, definitely. But do I like this? No. It’s a monster movie. Show me them scales and teeth. And that’s probably the biggest beef I have with Monster Planet.

7 out of 10

junglepic

As I dip my quill to begin the dictation of these first lines, six hours have passed since I began reading through the records of the library. Oh! How Happiness and I miss each other already! However, she is likewise very busy currently tending to our newborn daughter and to the Rhinocydont hatchlings – which reminds me that I must write quickly, for Dienok and I are due for a hunt at dawn. Still, no matter how quickly I write, I know that I will have to stay awake throughout the whole night to finish it (perhaps even after the hunt).

I am not alone, however. Our cat, who the whole kingdom knows by the title, “Princess”, is with me, curled up next to my papers at this very moment (she has learned not to spill my ink or eat my parchment, for she will have to sleep outside if she does it again). She is always with me when I am alone. Her presence has proved to be an immense comfort to me most of the time, though I do wish that she would leave me to myself on occasion.

Now, back to hurrying. About two minutes have passed since I finished reading the works of Alpha, Amoris, and Steer (the records do not show who dictated Steer’s poetry for him). The content of each scribe’s work is written beautifully, but it lacks the substance of narrative integral to storytelling. The whole Jungle has long wished that I would write a second book, but my life is so perfect now that I have constantly had to tell them that I have nothing to write about (I once attempted to compose a book of poetry for Happiness, but have since hidden it, for it cannot do her beauty and excellence justice). So I have now decided to give the Jungle Dwellers what they want with another book. But, as a wise man once said to me, “It’s not about what you want. It’s only about what you need.” And this whole world needs, in fact, desperately requires that the chronicles of my late friends (the REAL heroes of this Jungle, no matter what anyone, including Happiness, says) be made known.

Most of this story came from Alpha’s diary, and the only reason I even read it is because Happiness and the bovine tribe have convinced me that Alpha would have wanted it. It has been the strangest thing I have ever experienced – entering the mind of a mind reader.

The writings of Amoris were cryptic and prophetic, for she composed in detail the periods of isolation that the heroes experienced, hundreds of years before the events even occurred.

I believe I have captured the essence of my beloved Steer’s mind and soul due to heartfelt and cathartic poetry he left behind. This gives me the greatest joy of all, though it does make me wonder what he might have truly thought of me at least on occasion when he was alive. But the same goes for Emanuel, the Rhinocydonts, and, most of all, Snapper. Not necessarily about what he thought of me, but about the fact that all the inhabitants of the Jungle, myself included, may not have truly known him or any of these heroes at all.

When I am finished (whether before or after the hunt), I shall go over the whole work with Dienok for his approval. I wouldn’t want the public’s intimate knowledge of how his race once was to be a reason for him to return to his home world with his dragon kingdom (which Happiness could do for him at any time; but, thank the Creator, they have decided on remaining in the Jungle indefinitely).

I do believe that this is enough of a preface, so I shall now begin the tale. Please, enjoy it, for the sake of my fallen friends.

– Contentment (written signature)

junglepic

Prequel to THE FIRST AND THE LAST

Chapter One:

Though it was eight o clock in the morning, there was no light. The trees of the jungle grew too close too each other in this place for that. It was like a sanctuary of darkness – a cathedral of black where the only things to be made out were the sharp smells of flora and fauna. Perhaps this place had existed since the dawn of time – no – far older than that. More like since before the dawn of time. Before the worlds. Before the wars. Before Happiness.

Except, of course, for the fact that this place contained life. Amid the immense trees and the for once silent fairies was a horse. The hunters did not know exactly where it was located. They just knew that if there was one place in this jungle that an escaped dumb beast would flee to for protection, it would be here.

The two warriors couldn’t even see each other, and they dared not even breathe, much less speak, for fear of startling the hidden horse and forcing it to escape further into the blackness. Thankfully, these two could communicate with one another via their minds.

“Do you smell him, Snapper?”

“No, Alpha. But I smell something else. Something not right…out of place…wait. Wait, I can smell him now.”

“How far?”

“We must walk another hundred feet. Cautiously.”

“I know, Snapper. We must be very quiet. He could run away at any moment.”

“No. Cautiously. There is something else here with us.”

Alpha and Snapper moved on. The fierce Kappa warrior had a difficult time in doing so, for he was very heavy. Alpha’s agile, silent form had already succeeded him by several yards. But it was more than just the fear of making noise that held Snapper back.

It was the fear of the “something else”.

As they continued to stalk, Alpha took great care to not let his hidden thoughts about Snapper reach the turtle’s mind. Snapper had been different as of late. He didn’t eat as much. He was easily startled. And, most disquietingly of all, he had lost his edge in the art of sword fighting. Alpha would never forget the time he caught Snapper rumbling up his cannon in anger when his twin brother beat him in a sword match. Alpha would have intervened, but thankfully, Snapper collected himself quickly. His brother didn’t even realize that Snapper’s cannon was preparing to fire, which would have completely decimated the winner of the sword match. But Alpha did. And he knew that Snapper could somehow sense a new presence within the Jungle. Something that did not exist before. However, when asked about it, Snapper always shrugged his massive shoulders and grunted. Was this new presence of the Alpha? Or the Omega?

They could only guess.

“Halt,” said the telepathic voice of Alpha.

“What is it?” thought Snapper in reply.

“There is light. Sunlight, stabbing through the trees.”

“Nonsense. There are no open spaces in this part of the Jungle. Oh, you are right. I can see it now. And there’s the horse.”

The sunlight rained down upon the horse, briefly illuminating his black body before he moved back into the shadows. His head was at the ground, eating what looked like mushrooms. This horse, like so many other things in this Jungle, was different from horses belonging to other worlds.

For one, the horse was actually owned by another horse. The owner’s name was Swiftmane, and he was the Jungle’s lead breeder of dumb horses. Whenever he was not jealously wishing that he had been born a unicorn (pure black, red eyed, horned creatures that were this world’s epitome of grace, wisdom, and beauty), the Common Horse Swiftmane was busy with his farm of dumb horses. These ones were bred for milk, and, more importantly, for their nourishing, delicious meat that was the source of Horse Steak, the absolute delicacy of this world.

But those delicious meals were not being enjoyed frequently as of late. The livestock was depleting. It began at a slow pace, about a horse a month, but gradually escalated to two a week. Naturally, due to Alpha’s well-honed telepathy, Swiftmane put Alpha in charge of finding the beasts and discovering the reason for their disappearances. Alpha’s powers always produced an accurate answer for anything questioned of in this world, except for the fates of the Jungle’s creator, Happiness, as well as her future rescuer who was to come from another world (Alpha did, however, have some insight into certain things about these two that didn’t involve his telepathy). But this horse dilemma proved to be the third puzzle that Alpha was unable to solve with his enchanted mind.

Still, Alpha did succeed, with abundant help from Snapper, in locating a few of the horses, but most remained unaccounted for. Their condition upon being discovered caused great fear amongst the Jungle Dwellers. Blood was always present. The amount varied from a trickle to a pool, but it was there every time, along with an occasional piece of hoof or horse hide. Without tracks or any other signs of predation, all the Jungle folk were totally baffled.

All they could ascertain was that something had assaulted the horses from above—some sort of flying beast. But the fliers of this world were gentle, herbivorous animals that never caused any trouble—aside from the Fairies, but the only flesh those creatures consumed was their own.

No—there was something in the air, possibly ever-present, and it had proven itself extremely lethal. A specter of death, a power of the air, a killer that could soon lose interest in livestock and begin attacking people.

But that’s not what troubles Alpha the most. What truly disturbed him was that whatever else these monsters may have been, they were completely alien to this world. Alpha’s senses told him that they belonged neither to the good force his name represented, nor to the corrosive energy of the Omega. All created beings, even the cowardly humans, could be identified in at least a small way with one or the other. The phantom, on the other hand…

Crack.

The horse, startled by the sudden noise from within the Jungle, jerked his head up and began scanning his surroundings.

“What was—”

Snapper’s thought was cut short by a visual and auditory frenzy. The horse was thrashing about violently and screaming in ways no one had ever heard from a horse before. A blur of feathers and blood surrounded the animal from all directions. Alpha and Snapper rushed forward, but were too late to even get a good look at the winged assailant.

The entire incident lasted no more than two seconds, and during that time, all the two warriors could make out were flashes of yellow and red, a pair of glowing green orbs, and four impossibly long limbs with what appeared to be hooks on the ends. Then, their eyes were blinded as a cascade of burgundy blood rained down on them from above.

The phantom had struck again, and Alpha knew in his heart of hearts that this was only the beginning.

Ridley Scott knows what he’s doing. He knows damn-well.

The 2012 Alien prequel known as Prometheus, while being a film of grand visuals and ideas, was much maligned by many xeno fans due to the lack of the iconic monster first introduced in 1979. Was it an Alien movie or wasn’t it? Though I knew it was well before seeing it, that question still entered my mind on more than one occasion while viewing it. Not enough creatures, not enough deep space claustrophobia, not enough psychological horror, not enough…well, ALIEN.

Sir Scott has learned from those mistakes and brought back the terrifying face rapist in all its slimy glory. There’s no question – COVENANT is a full on Alien movie, and, at a few frightening points, is a bright highlight of the whole franchise. I read a quote from Scott where he says “Okay, you wanted aliens? All right. I’ll give them to you.” Give them to us he does, in a way that would make Giger proud, in a bloody, disgusting (my wife had to look away many times to keep from vomiting), and, yes, scary way.

It didn’t actually scare me (I’ve seen these films since I was four years old), but the pacing and structure of the first two acts truly did fill me with dreadful anticipation. You’re going to be gripping your arm rests, waiting with a racing heart to find out what happens next.

One thing I liked about it was the music. The new score was foreboding and excellent, but the real treat (and there are many treats in this movie) was hearing Jerry Goldsmith’s score from the 1979 original. Those haunting symphonies haven’t been in a motion picture since 1986, and they will put a smile on any Alien lover’s face that will remain for hours after watching the movie.

And that’s just one example of why this film is so excellent. Look at Star Wars, Trek, Godzilla, and Marvel movies – retro is in. Everyone’s bringing back the movies of the 80s and revamping them. Usually it ends up being a rehash of sorts, and seems to indicate that Hollywood has run out of ideas, but with Covenant, the nostalgia is extremely effective. It honors the other films in the franchise, and plays out like an Alien greatest hits collection. The claustrophobia and slow pacing of the original, the intense action of the second one, the existential nihilism of the third, and the beautiful body horror of the fourth – all of these elements are combined and hybridized in Covenant like one of David’s unholy mutations.

Speaking of David, he and his doppelganger, Walter, are the best parts of the film where characterization is concerned. The dialogue and nuances between them is fascinating to watch, and the parts are played very well by Fassbender. All the acting in the film is great, even if the characters aren’t very memorable. But I didnt see it for the people. And neither will you.

It’s all about that xeno, baby. These Aliens are wicked. They move faster, look sleeker, and do more damage than they’ve ever done before. The Neomorphs, an early breed in the xeno evolution, are both beautiful and sickening. They enter the body through spores, then burst out from either a back or a neck. These violent eruptions alone make Covenant one of the bloodiest movies I have ever seen. The creatures start out almost “cute”, but quickly mature into living nightmares. With white skin, spiked backs, and human like limbs, they look like a ghastly combination of Giger’s scariest paintings and the Newborn from Alien: Resurrection. There’s one shot in particular where a Neomorph stares into the face of David as he tries to communicate with it. These short few seconds are the epitome of cinematic horror. You actually feel like the monster is looking at you , and it really is quite a thrilling feeling…

But the movie’s crowning achievement is the traditional chest bursting scene. Though it doesn’t shock us nearly as much as the original did (we are probably all secretly a little sick of it) it still packs quite a punch. There’s no way to ever recapture that particular moment of terror from the first film, but the Alien birthing scene in Covenant is still better than all the chest burster sequences of the other 6 entries. And despite being visceral and completely over the top, the moment somehow elicits a feeling of beauty and even tenderness, which is something I’ve never felt while watching a horror movie. You’ll just have to watch the scene for yourself to know what I’m talking about.

Oram: What do you believe in, David?

David (smiling): Creation.

With a subplot focusing on androids retelling the tale of Satan’s rebellion (David is Lucifer, Walter is Adam, the Xenomorphs are the demons, Earth and the xeno home world are both symbols of paradise, and humans and Space Jockeys are “God”), a well paced and well structured screenplay, good acting, fantastic special effects (too many CGI aliens though, as it is with monsters in EVERYTHING nowadays), and horror that makes the blood run cold, Alien: Covenant fixes all of the problems of Prometheus, explains the origin of the Xenomorph, and stands as the third best entry in the franchise, behind Alien and Aliens by only a little bit. This is a better “throwback” movie than the new Star Wars episodes, the American Godzilla, Jurassic World, and all of the superhero movies combined. Long live nostalgia, and long live the facehugger.


lol…..lol…..lol…..

This isn’t going to be very long. I’m already sick of reviewing stuff anyway and want to get back to poetry and my books, but I can’t resist reviewing this film. I’m gonna be lazy about it and not be in depth or anything, which is actually kind of more than it deserves lol.

When I say that, I mean that it isn’t a good film compared to other good films. It’s not well thought out. The plot sucks. The actors suck. And, most importantly, it’s not going to be remembered in the same way the original ID4 was remembered. Even though the original wasn’t like an Oscar winner or anything, it was still fun and bombastic (like most movies of the 90s).

But if you are like Roger Ebert and hated the original, then you’ll wanna stab your eyes out with this one.

Aliens come back to destroy the world. But instead of multiple mother ships, they come back with…..

ONNNNNNNEEEEEEE!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Don’t need to clarify that plot hole.

Now, at first, I thought their whole “picking up China And dropping it on Europe” was fucking stupid. Like, what’s the point?

But now, I see that the aliens have emotion and actually have resentment towards humankind for the war of 96. Revenge in the most destructive and “fuck you” way possible.

(Or a way to sell movie tickets by “trying” to be original)

Back to the one ship thing, the aliens are now revealed to be controlled by a queen. She rips off of Aliens and Godzilla.

Heavily.

Now I will list my two main complaints.

Those badass, slithery, freaking tight looking aliens are back, suits and all. But guess what?

They’re all CGI.

I’m sick of movies doing this. Does the population really not realize that practical effects work way way way way better than computerized ones? Or is it the studios’ fault? In one scene, the aliens shoot a bunch of people with their guns as they wade around within some form of creek or something.

Halo 6!!!!!!!! Yay!!!! Oh….wait….

Why wipe out all of humanity in one fell swoop when you can hunt them down on the ground with laser guns? Right?!?!?!

The other main complaint I have(aside from the script and the acting) is that this film TRIES SO HARD TO BE EXACTLY LIKE THE FIRST INDEPENDENCE DAY. I mean LITERALLY. I felt sort of the same way with FORCE AWAKENS, but at least it didn’t seem contrived. Plot structure, lines, everything.

Be all that as it may, however…

This movie is FUN

I think they should have taken it more seriously, but they obviously didn’t. If they had, it coulda been a film that would be remembered for decades to come.

But since it wasn’t made seriously, and was made more as a campy throwback to the original, it is actually a very enjoyable film with some great moments and good special effects(practical would have been better though).

Therefore, I give ID4 Resurgence a 6 out of 10.

But it’s like a 3 if they Actually seriously tried their hardest on it.

I’m a sucker for aliens! Can’t help it!

Bottom line (hate me if you must) it’s worth watching, but still nothing compared to the original ( much less compared to landmark sci-fi such as “alien”, “Star wars”, and “Star Trek”).

BRENT SPINER IS FREAKING AWESOME THOUGH

p.s.

Why are the digital effects not as good as they were in another Emmerich movie titled, “Godzilla” (in name only)? It’s been eighteen years since that one came out, and this one looks shitty compared to it. Video game CGI….I digress.

This review is 4 years too late. Maybe 3, since I only started by blog in 2015. But either way, I find it shameful that I haven’t mentioned this movie throughout my blog career. The “alien” movies are the greatest films ever made. So I should have reviewed this one early on. 

But wait… Is it actually an “alien” movie?

I think I’ve discovered the answer.

Anyway, I’m not gonna go through the plot and stuff like that, other than the fact that some scientists are on a mission to discover whether or not aliens created human beings. Which to me is immediately stupid(but still epic) because either way, someone had to create the alien creators in the first place, as mentioned by the film’s chief protagonist, Elizabeth Shaw. But it doesn’t matter – the film is about people looking for the alien “engineers” who created us. 

Turns out, they’re right. The world they arrive on is completely devoid of life – at first. But then, an android playing the role of a resentful Lucifer finds a bio-mechanical substance that can alter life forms and in fact create new life, and he uses this to infect a scientist who proceeds to impregnate his girlfriend with an extra terrestrial Satan spawn. 

Did I mention that this was an “alien” prequel? Well, we will get to that later, after I explain the merits as well as the mistakes of this film. 

The best thing about the film is Michael Fassbender’s portrayal of David the android. The character is a devil straight out of   “Paradise lost”, hating his creators(mankind) who look down upon him, and slowly plotting revenge against them. The film has many spiritual themes, but this is by far the best one explored. He also practically creates the XENOMORPHS, although AVP(if it’s considered canon by Ridley Scott) and the upcoming “Covenant” may prove that the acid creatures were alive long before David infected Charlie. Sorry if you haven’t seen this movie yet, but I’m sure that by now everyone has. 

Another merit of this film, though the one I just mentioned is the chief example of this, is the religious themes. Who created us? What happens when we die? What is our purpose? The way the film explains it, especially through the special effects, is spectacular, though I honestly feel that our origin story(as well as that of the xenomorph) could have been written better(Shaw’s conviction in her Christian faith however is rendered beautifully). 

Which brings me to another merit – special effects. They are amazing. Some of the best CGI I’ve seen in years. Tons better than Jurassic World and the new Godzilla. A lot of artists who worked on the first alien film in 79 also worked on this one, and it definitely shows. Some of the shots of the kitchen and corridors in this movie are eerily similar to those in the original “alien”, though much more streamlined and advanced. But even though this movie technically takes place before the first “alien” film, it still looks better, obviously, because it’s not 1979 in the world of filmmaking anymore. The way Prometheus explains this is that the NOSTROMO ship from the original alien was basically a space truck, and that the Prometheus vessel in this film is a fully funded science vessel. I must say, it makes much more sense and works way better than the updated effects of the Star Wars prequels.

That being said,despite the wonderful CGI and miniature work, the film still pails in comparison to the sets of the first “alien”. Now that shit was epic. It felt real because it WAS real. Wasn’t a detailed video game like this one. 

So, effects are pretty good for what the video game CGI guys do nowadays, but how is the acting?

Passable.

I mean, Noomie Rapace is the only one who really stands out as an actor other than Fassbender, but all the actors still do a nice job with the script they’ve been given. 

But Fassbender as David – damn near perfect. Ridley Scott apparently wanted this film and his future alien prequels to have an intensely religious, spiritual theme – well, he only succeeded with the David character – and that’s actually more than enough. 

David resents his creators. Even Peter Weyland, the old man who commissioned his construction, calls him “a man, but a man without a soul”. And the other characters in the film treat him the same way, aside from Shaw, who feels sympathy and, more importantly, respect towards the android. 

But Shaw’s boyfriend certainly doesn’t. He constantly refers to David as “boy”, constantly wants to use him as nothing more than a mechanical tool, and even tells the android straight to his face that he can’t feel disappointment or any other emotion.

Well, David proves him wrong whether Charlie knew it or not. He infects him with the black virus (one more criticism – waaaaaaayyyy too much like the x files) and speaks to him in a very sarcastic”you have no idea what I got planned for you” type of way. David is easily the best thing about the film, from his desire for revenge to his quoting of classic motion pictures in an attempt to be more artsy and human. He reminds me of Star Trek’s DATA – except he performs in the way I always wanted Data to perform. Emotional, vengeful, and sarcastic – this character wants to be his own man, as far away from the human race as he can possibly be – and yet, compared with the other characters, he’s more human and believable than all of them.

Finally we come to the point of me watching this film – it’s connection to the “alien” universe. When I first watched it in 2012, I was excited anytime the word Weyland was mentioned. I was overjoyed with the depiction of the SPACE JOCKEYs, the “engineers”. 

But after two hours of some well designed extra terrestrials that paid a faint homage to the original xeno, I was quite disappointed to find the titular creature at the end of the film making up only about 60 seconds of the entire movie. I still liked the film, but I agreed with Eric Cartman’s opinion – even the writers didn’t know what this movie was about. Is it ALIEN or not?

Well, that complaint has slowly diminished with me over the past few years. Even though Ridley Scott is a liar about whether his films will contain the original Alien or not, I have finally concluded that Prometheus is a true Alien movie with just enough hints and Easter eggs to make it so. I originally hated how it sort of distanced itself from the iconic franchise it was intended to preclude – but I have changed my mind. 

It’s a good idea, letting us know just barely that is is a film connected to the Alien franchise. And this makes us want to see part two, “alien: covenant” even more. But regardless of what Scott planned, he is a liar. He originally said that “covenant” wouldn’t have any XENOMORPHS in it. Now he’s endorsing their appearance. Somehow, I feel that all this double talk was planned – that he only made Prometheus 10 % of a real alien film just to get us excited for the next one where he’s gonna go all out.

So, without further ado, I grant this film 7.5 out of 10 stars. Better than the AVP films, but not quite up to par with “alien: resurrection”. 

Don’t be hatin: that was a great movie 

imageThe ALIEN franchise has always been essential, influential, groundbreaking, and just damn well conceived. Though it was inspired by B movies like “It: the terror from beyond space”, “Planet of the Vampires”, and the Swiss surrealist, H. R. Giger(who designed the creature, and let’s face it: if the alien didn’t look as disturbing and original as it did, no one would have given the films a chance, despite the excellent acting and screenplays), it always had a flair of originality as a franchise that inspired countless sci fi sagas. Play “Halo” or “Call of Duty”. Watch the remake of “Dawn of the Dead”(I may be wrong, but its structure seemed to closely follow that of the second xeno installment, “Aliens”). Watch the original Independence Day. Play any sci fi video game or watch any extra terrestrial movie. Star Trek’s “Borg” (how did H. R. Giger not get a credit for the imagery?) and “Species 8472”. It’s all inspired by INTERNECIVUS RAPTUS(species name of the xenomorph -http://web.archive.org/web/20080820074424/http://www.anchorpointessays.com/egg.html )specifically the way the monster and story was portrayed in James Cameron’s “Aliens”(don’t ever watch “alone in the dark”, “the cave”, or “leviathan” – movies that rip off the alien franchise so much that they make my stomach turn). Hell, even the “Predator” franchise probably wouldn’t have happened without “Alien”(predator never really ripped off of alien in any way. I just feel like “Alien” opened the door for the galactic Arnie hunters). Even though many agree with me, you can probably already tell that I am extremely biased. The Alien films are my all time favorite movies. I even love the ones people hate. Alien 3″(why? That stuff was DARK, nihilistic, claustrophobic and terrifying), “Resurrection”(a beautifully directed film with stunning cinematography and SFX), and – gasp – even the AVP films(okay, they are shitty compared to the originals of both franchises, but you can’t say that they aren’t fun). But, regardless of how much I enjoy the films that started and came after “Alien 3”, the first two alien films are the watermark. That’s why I became so excited when I heard about Neil Blomkaamps “Alien 5” film, a direct sequel to the second movie, which would bring back Ripley, Hicks, and the lovable little girl turned hardened badass Newt. Prometheus was awesome and extremely well directed, but it still disappointed me(I basically waited two hours to see the last ten seconds of the movie).

So yay for Alien 5 right?

Cue Ridley Scott, director of the first Alien.

He decides to come in and stall Alien 5 until his Prometheus 2 film, “Alien: Covenant”, can be released. What? Keep us from seeing our favorite actress Sigourney Weaver kill acid bleeding monsters so that the sequel to the prequel can be made? Okay, okay, so he had “Prometheus” way before Blomkaamp started working on “5”. He has the right to finish “Covenant” first, even if it annoys (but still excites) us Alien fans. I’m truly excited for “Covenant”, especially now that, unlike “Prometheus”, it’s an actual “Alien” film. But here’s why I have a few worries:

RIDLEY SCOTT IS ONE OF THE MOST TALENTED DIRECTORS IN THE INDUSTRY AND DIRECTED MY ALL TIME FAVORITE FILM (ALIEN), BUT HE TRIED TO MAKE PROMETHEUS ONLY “LOOSELY” CONNECTED TO THE XENOMORPHS AND HAS BEEN MAKING CONTRADICTIONS FOR YEARS NOW.

I don’t remember the exact quotes, but the contradictions are as follows:

(Four years ago) “Prometheus will have Alien in it”

(A few months later)
“Prometheus will not have Alien in it”

(The movie comes out and, lo and behold, the creature is actually in it, albeit for only ten seconds at the end)

(2015)
“The beast(referring to the ALIEN not actually being in Prometheus 2) is cooked. They’ve wrung it dry. There’s only so much snarling you can do. No more Alien. I’m done with “dragons” and shit.”

(A few months later)
“We’ll have them all. Egg, face hugger, chestburster, then the Big Boy. And it’s not “Prometheus 2”. It’s “Alien” (covenant)!”

What the fuck?

Ok, I do put my tongue in my cheek at these contradictions, but I actually have nothing against Scott or the new Alien film he’s making (at least it will be more of an Alien film than Prometheus…hopefully). I love the hell out of him, and he’s tied with Inoshiro Honda, David Fincher, and Steven Spielberg as my favorite director. I’m just annoyed in a very immature way that I won’t see Ripley again for a while and have to keep guessing on whether “Covenant” is really going to be a film with the xenomorph or not (I’m sure it will be though… Scott has said before that successful sequels to films such as “Star Wars” has shown him that giving in to the nostalgia of the fans is where the money really is).

I do however have a very big glimmer of hope:

Danny McBride reveals his role in ‘Alien: Covenant,’ gushes about film’s practical FX