Alien: Covenant

Movie review by
Jeffrey M. Anderson, Common Sense Media
Alien: Covenant Movie Poster Image
Popular with kids
Blood, gore, moody visuals, and a strong female character.
  • R
  • 2017
  • 123 minutes

Parents say

age 15+
Based on 20 reviews

Kids say

age 15+
Based on 45 reviews

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this movie.

Positive Messages

Not a message movie, as such, but raises questions around why humans would have a need to populate a new planet (why couldn't they take care of their old one?) and why David would spend so much time and energy experimenting on the alien.

Positive Role Models & Representations

While none of the characters are perfect, Daniels is a strong woman who shows bravery and resourcefulness in the face of great danger.


Lots of blood and gore. A man burns to death; his charred body is shown. Aliens burst from characters' chests and backs. Face-hugger aliens. Character is beheaded; severed head shown floating in water. Characters are sick, vomiting, spewing blood. Character's face burned by alien acid. Shooting, explosions. Thousands of dead, blackened bodies. Fighting, kicking, stabbing with nail.


A couple has sex in shower in a somewhat graphic scene; they're interrupted. One naked breast shown. A woman removes her gear to reveal a tank top and starts to wash herself.


Multiple uses of "f--k," plus "s--t," "t-ts," "son of a bitch," "ass," "damn," "take a leak," "Jesus" as an exclamation.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Several characters drink whisky while toasting to a fallen comrade. Cigar smoking. Mention of drinking a "cold beer."

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Alien: Covenant is the sequel to Prometheus and the sixth overall movie in the Alien series (or eighth. if you count the Alien vs. Predator movies). It's scary and violent: There's lots of blood and gore, aliens bursting from body cavities, a beheading, and someone being burned alive (charred remains are shown). Faces are burned with acid, characters vomit and spew blood, and there's fighting, kicking, and stabbing, as well as shooting and explosions. Language is also fairly strong, with multiple uses of "f--k," plus "s--t," "t-ts," and more. There's one somewhat-graphic sex scene, with partial female nudity (a breast). Characters drink and smoke briefly. As has often been the case in the Alien series, one of the central characters is a strong, brave woman (here played by Katherine Waterston).

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byUsername101 May 22, 2017

Surprisingly good... and surprisingly violent

I thought this was going to be rubbish, but i was quite surprised... the violence is quite graphic and gory with lots of sploshy blood and back intestines, at o... Continue reading
Adult Written byPres October 13, 2020

Not for kids

Everyone dies
Extreme Gore
Out of place gratuitous graphic sex scene
Teen, 15 years old Written byHarry.trax May 24, 2017

Really good sci-fi horror movie , with blood,gore and more ...

Violence and Gore : 4/5
Sex and Nudity: 3/5
Language: 4/5
Frightening images and terror: 5/5
Total : 16/20 : For bloody sci-fi violence, gore, languag... Continue reading
Teen, 13 years old Written bymurdermystery November 30, 2019

Just OK

ALIEN: COVENANT has intense violence and blood as well as some rough language. The main thing parents will need to know about is the sexual shower scene, which... Continue reading

What's the story?

The story of ALIEN: COVENANT picks up after the events of 2012's Prometheus: A crew of 15 travels with hundreds of hibernating colonists, seeking to build a new life on a remote world. Then a sudden shockwave damages the ship, and android Walter (Michael Fassbender) prematurely wakes the crew (Katherine Waterston, Billy Crudup, Danny McBride, Demian Bichir, etc.) from cryosleep. They discover a nearby planet with habitable conditions and decide to check it out. On the surface, one crew member steps in the wrong place and releases weird spores; before long, he's sick, and an alien pops out of his chest cavity. Other crew members die in quick succession, until they're suddenly rescued by David (Fassbender again), the android from Prometheus, who's been stranded on this planet for years. David knows all about the murderous creatures, but can they be stopped?

Is it any good?

While the story offers little new -- it seems patched together from Alien, Prometheus, and even Blade Runner -- director Ridley Scott's moody, thoughtful style makes this sequel worth seeing. Alien: Covenant, which is -- counting the two Alien vs. Predator movies -- the eighth in the Alien franchise, starts quite similarly to the original 1979 film. It has an unexpected wake-up call, an investigation, and the discovery of the horrid monster.

But even as Covenant moves into territory already covered by Scott's other sci-fi movies, it proves that Scott knows what he's doing here. He creates powerful, striking imagery right out of myth, from a doomed necropolis filled with blackened, statue-like bodies to David's years-old laboratory cave, filled with creepy specimens and papers flapping quietly in the chilling draft. And the slightly faster, noisier way that Scott handles the alien attacks -- they're not as spooky as they were in the original -- is easily forgiven after scenes between David and Walter arguing over the meaning of existence.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about Alien: Covenant's violence. Did any of it feel unnecessary/over the top to you, or it is appropriate to the genre/story? How did it affect you? What's the impact of media violence on kids?

  • Is Daniels a role model? Why or why not? Does she represent any valuable character strengths? How does she compare to the other female characters of the Alien franchise?

  • What's the appeal of the Alien movies? How does this one compare to others in the series?

Movie details

Our editors recommend

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Themes & Topics

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