Weak character-writing means poor Noomi Rapace never achieves the strength of Sigourney Weaver's Ripley - but it probably doesn't help that she looks six inches shorter.
The humanoid engineers? Just reek of poor prosthetics... Rafe Spall - usually a real presence plays and dies as the stupidest space biologist imaginable... The flabby alien thing looks like a joke... the fabulous "space jockey" of Alien is diminished in size and power - and proves to be merely an exotic space suit for the humanoid engineer. Really?? I much preferred the notion that this was the ossified carcass of a huge alien suggested in the first - and, then finally, we were shown a diminutive pseudo alien that was really a joke compared to what we had grown used to. Is this supposed to an earlier, less evolved alien? We are not told, and are supposed to guess?? I'm all for films that demand thinking about - but, really.. after all the shit we've just sat through, do we care any more? At this point, we just want it to end - which fortunately it's about to do... And finally, one more script point that has really bugged me from the moment it came up: the quote from Lawrence of Arabia, which I've always loved - and is echoed by Fassbinder in the early scenes: "The secret, is not MINDING that it hurts..." A great line - but which is never later referred to, so becomes quite pointless. That line needed to have been repeated later in the film, when he or some other character was under stress or pain. Without that later echo, the line and its establishment becomes quite pointless. Perhaps it was in an earlier cut, but then removed - but without trimming its set-up.. These are all things which master director Ridley Scott, you'd think, would have seen and addressed. The fact that he didn't, but delivered this exceedingly below-par film, makes you wonder....