Alien: Covenant (2017)

Alien: Covenant (2017) Trailer

Starring:  Michael Fassbender, Katherine Waterston, Billy Crudup

Director:  Ridley Scott

Runtime:  2 Hr 2 Min

Genre(s):  Horror, Sci-Fi, Thriller

Review by:  John Dixon

Spoiler Free Review: (read if you have NOT seen this movie)

Following the outcomes of the movie “Prometheus” Alien: Covenant takes place about 10 years afterward. A colonizing crew with 2,000+ bodies are on their way to colonize a new world still 7 years away. Everyone is trained on what to do, everything is planned on how to do it. When they get a strange transmission from a habitable planet only a few weeks away they decide to consider this their new home. A decent entry into the Alien franchise, definitely ranked towards the top of this franchise. This movie will explore the origin of the “Aliens” we all know.

Spoiler Filled Review: (read only if you HAVE seen it and don’t care about spoilers)

Seeing aliens walk upright always creep me out. Watching a white one walk upright and just stand there? Best scene in the movie. For me, anyway I thought it added a layer to these creatures knowing that they don’t just run around and tear up humans. I liked to see the aliens evolve in a way to see how they reproduce. To us, its the old fashioned way but this movie introduces the actual old fashioned way. By spore, initially evolving to a more efficient “implant eggs in your mouth” method. Which is what we are used to seeing in an Alien movie. Glad to see Ridley Scott back and in the Alien Directors chair. Following up his Prometheus “comeback” to the Alien franchise he keeps it rolling.

The casting is a confusing one for me. I’m ok with their main cast. Although the biggest parts went to Fassbender (2 roles) an unknown, and an unproven in this genre. The unknown being Katherine Waterston (Daniels) and the unproven being Danny McBride (Tennessee) more famous for his roles in anything with James Franco and his “Eastbound & Down” TV comedy series. It was the small roles by bigger named actors. Like Guy Pearce? I get the fact that his character was in Prometheus (much younger) via flashback. How about James Franco? He was in a 10 second video to his “wife” then gets burned up in his stasis pod. Was that even him in there? That was weird. Maybe McBride had him drop him off at work one day and he decided to hang out and act a bit. I’m throwing Billy Crudup’s role in there for a bit role, because honestly his role was shorter than a 2 year olds attention span during an episode of Matlock.

The plot was simple and straight to the point. Colonists that get detained by John Denver and a “rip your face off and then rip your buddies face off” killer species. The simple story-line is not what bothered me the most about the writing. It was the idiotic characters. Apparently in the future we emulate the movie Idiocracy because these people are pretty clumsy and dumb. 1. Why would anyone visit a new planet without wearing face-masks? Did they not learn anything from War of the Worlds? I understand a Quarantine situation. I don’t think these people quite got it. T’s wife lose’s it and goes back to the “quarantined” room to shoot the Alien? But first there’s blood to slip on. Same idiot then loses containment and then has a chance to shoot and slips on some more blood! Seriously, then she decides to shoot explosive containers. Idiot! I guess Tennessee did marry her for her looks. How about lowering the entire ship below “Safety precautions” and then after things calm down, they take another smaller ship to the planets surface. Why didn’t they just do that to start with without using so much time. How about the new captain shooting the alien over David’s shoulder? That was actually a smart move. What was stupid was the fact that he saw David wanting to trust these Aliens, and then he goes all Captain Dumb-ass and bites when the Android David asks him to look into the Alien egg. Idiot! And finally after being attacked by the last crazy android (David) they just assume that the android that is with them is Walter. Don’t they have some sort of Serial Number? I know when the future comes along and my Fassbender Android steps out of his box, I’m checking for a serial number.

I’m all for Ridley Scott being the director here. But honestly I think he did the best for the way it was written. Jack Paglan should have been spot on. Even Michael Green wrote “Logan”. But he does have the credit of writing Green Lantern. So… there’s that. I’m clueless at who to point the finger at. Maybe it was just better from their point of view because Ridley’s believe it or not story was believe it or not not so wonderful. Cohesive story? Well I really dug all of the interactions of the characters and story prior to John Denver. I was invested. Even with the side step to another planet, I was on board. When we met the Android David and he started just spouting off random crap. I lost interest. Seriously the “recorder/flute” scene had me like WTF is this?! Then we went into the events that followed the last movie and from there it was just a spectacle of seeing how Aliens were made. The special effects were grandiose and I appreciated that. But, Ridley was average on this day.

I didn’t think about it. I just watched it. The ending was predictable. C’mon we all knew that it was really David. The movie was sort of easy to watch, I mean, It didn’t piss me off for any real reason… except for the idiots. They upset me. Greatly. Seriously, didn’t they know it is the #1 rule to NOT have shower sex in a horror genre styled movie? That’s like auto-death right there. Nah, kidding. I liked the simplicity and more than anything it was neat to find out how the Aliens were birthed. The next one should tell us how they got to the planet Ripley found them on in the original movie right?



Comic Book Connection Michael Fassbender: X-Men Franchise – Billy Crudup: Watchmen, James Franco: Spider-Man 1,2,3 – Guy Pearce: Iron Man 3
Nudity Bonus Amy Seimetz (Faris) during the Shower scene.  Very small but it still counts!  (the scene not the other… c’mon!)
Favorite Moment Any scene with the Black Long Head Alien in it really.  The standing Alien was cool but I’m a sucker for the OG.
Most Hated Moment Tennessee’s Wife with a shotgun.  That’s all I have to say.  I’m getting heated up just thinking about it.
THIS Movie reminded me of THAT Movie This movie reminded of the original, maybe it was Daniels haircut but something took me back to the original.
What did my wife think of this movie? I really liked it.  It was a well told origin story that tied well into the Alien franchise.
Box Office Budget 97 Million
How much it made Domestically $74,213,560.00
Was it a Box office Success? Or Failure? Failure
Did you notice? 1.  The Xenomorph “Alien” was last seen 10 years ago in the Aliens vs. Predator movie.  Before that was 10 years as well.
2.  When Daniels fought the Alien she said the same thing Ripley said in the original.   “I got you, you son of a bitch.”
3.  Even though it only made 74 million domestically it did pull in 232 Million Worldwide.  I guess the world loves Aliens.
Rotten Tomatoes Score
Critics 71%
Audience 59%

127 Hours (2010)

Trailer:  127 Hours (2010)

Starring:  James Franco, Amber Tamblyn, Kate Mara  – Directed By:  Danny Boyle

Running Time: 1hr & 34 mins – Genre: Adventure, Biography, Drama


Big JD (Host)

Movie Selection Relevance

I’ve been really wanting to select this movie for quite awhile.  I’ve told Ran-Dizzle to watch it in the past but did he?  No, so here ya go!  Now you have to.  🙂  More importantly I’ve been on a James Franco kick lately.  He’s been popping up in a bunch of movies I’ve been watching lately.  The Iceman, Lovelace, This is the End and a movie trailer of a movie called As I lay Dying that seems like another winner from Mr. Franco.  It really helps that he’s been working his ass off.  Just in 2013 he was in 11 movies. and 9 movies in 2012.  For 2014 he has on dock 10 movies.  I should call him “James (Brown) Franco: the hardest working-est man in Hollywood”.


Aron loves his X-treme sports, especially his rock climbing.  One normal day he sets out on some rock climbing excercises when he gets stuck between a rock and a hard place.  Then his survival skills come into question as he awaits rescue.  Will he make it out alive?  He has 127 hours to live so you can find out for yourself.


James Franco is spectacular in this movie!  He is the only one onscreen for most of the movie.  Sure there are others that appear in this movie but it is Franco that carries the torch.  And he sets the place ablaze!

His (James’) acting ability was never in question.  Kate Mara and the other hitchhiker Amber Tamblyn were recognized right away from TV and another movie I like.  Amber had a reoccurring role in House, M.D. and Kate was in Entourage and played the Subpoena Issuer in Iron Man 2.  Both had short roles in this movie but they did have a point and they did well.  It made you feel like after he got caught you then feel the anxiety of leaving someone waiting.  Your missing a good time.  The anxiety of him hitting it off with a girl.  Instead you then have to stick it through with him to survive.  …and drink some urine.  I just threw up a little.

The soundtrack is pretty melodramatic with exception to the beginning.  Love the intro.  It shows his intensity and his love for everything outdoors.  It basically throws you into his X-treme world immediately and doesn’t let up.  The intro song helps with that.  The directing and editing was done very well.  When this could have been a disaster of a movie Danny Boyle is great.  With so many one on one moments with Franco it had the chance to become boring.  This never happened for me.  It’s all in the editing of scenes and keeping the internal story moving along to NOT make you think about what’s going on in other places.  And when you watch this movie without spoiling it I will say that I enjoyed the ending.

Before I was a married with kids man, I could have really related with Aron’s motivation to stay alive.  He wanted to see his future son.  Who knows when that could be its just the thought that you may die without ever being able to pass on knowledge to your offspring.  That hit home with me, because there were times in my “single” life that I had doubts that I would ever find that special someone and that made me push through it in hopes of one day meeting my kids.  Yeah, I just compared being single to being stuck in crevasse with a boulder on your hand.

My only issue with this movie is that it leaves very little to be desired when talking about re-watch ability.  You can watch it once a year and be fine but, it’s really not a sit down and watch on a Wednesday afternoon just after you watched two Monday’s ago.  Not really the movie’s fault but I cannot give a movie a 5 Star rating unless I can watch it over and over again.

Comic Book Connection:  James Franco – Spider-Man 1-3, Kate Mara – Iron Man 2, Lizzy Caplan – Item 47 (Marvel One-shot), Smallville

Nudity:  No.




This is one of those movies that brings reality to light, as it is a true event it shows you lots of things to do to survive when the worst happens as well as bring those fears among what could happen when one does something like this. Not many movies especially over rock climbing or any really outdoor activity catches my attention I even procrastinated watching it, and Big JD tells me “Your going to love it.” I wouldn’t say I loved it but I did think it was a good movie.

First of all James Franco did a great job playing Aron Ralston being stuck between a rock and survival for 127 hours. I mean to play that part where you can’t move and all the stuff that Aron had to do even down to *Spoiler* urinating in the Camel Pak to which he had to drink later. The best part besides it’s a true story, is that you see the rock as a symbol of something taking a hold of him and saying LOOK, look at what your choices in life are causing, He hallucinated that he wasn’t going to make it to his sister’s wedding, how if he answered his mom’s call he wouldn’t have been where he was, he could have went and partied with those girls and the inflatable Scooby-Doo. ..but instead he was stuck between the rock and his survival.

The writing was done very well but when you only have basically one scene and quite a few flashbacks you really don’t have to be Shakespeare to make this movie quite dramatic.

The Soundtrack was quite unusual but I liked it, kind of like a burned cd or playlist on an Ipod to Aron’s everyday journey into rock climbing, biking, hiking…

As a movie and a story I think this movie was amazing and tells Aron’s tale well and I think it’s a must see for any wanna-be hikers,rock climbers, or anyone who wants a challenge you should definitely watch this.

And just as important as the message at the end of the movie, if your going to tempt fate by doing things on your own make sure people know where you are because sometimes things don’t always work out like we want them.




WOW!! That is about all I can say about this movie. It was amazing to watch. I don’t think I could be as calm or collected as Aron if I was in any kind of situation as this. The movie itself was moving and full of hope in a very hopeless situation. There were times when you wanted to yell at the fates for Aron and you kept cheering him on. Halfway through the movie, I had to keep looking away from the screen because it was just to much to take in. 

James Franco did an amazing job in a basically one man show. There were hints of other characters to help keep Aron going but other than the feel good fun scene at the beginning of the film it is him and his own mind.

I remember hearing this was based on a true story when it first came out. If Franco’s portrayal of Aron is anywhere accurate to how Aron really responded then more power to him. He was so calm from beginning to end. He just kept going and doing what he thought needed to be done. I don’t want to tell you how he kept himself going but I will say the mind is a powerful thing.

I would not recommend watching this with small children but older ones yes. Use this as an example of what can happen when no one knows where you are going or when you’ll be back.

It does get a little graphic but the music helped me get through the rougher scenes. it blended well with the movie and kept me going.

So yes, watch this movie! It has a total WOW factor and is super amazing.