If you pay any attention to the internet, you’ll have noticed that Prometheus, Ridley Scott’s anticipated return to both sci-fi and the Alien franchise, has been a somewhat divisive affair. A pummeling marketing blitz succeeded in drumming up hype but presented a relatively inaccurate picture, portraying the film as a more directly linked precursor to Alien than it actually is. As a result, cinema-goers’ hopes for the film were somewhere in the territory between a straight origin story and Alien: Again…
Prometheus was neither, leading to tepid critical response and an army of disappointed fans kicking the internet hyperbole machine into top gear. I circumnavigated these expectations but braced myself for a Phantom Menace level disaster. Going in with this pessimistic attitude and some knowledge of the viral pre-release material allowed me to appreciate what this cut of the film is: a well-intentioned mess.
This said, the resuscitation of the franchise lore, and interesting themes and ideas in the film are far more substantial than the negative response seems to acknowledge. Here’s five reasons why Prometheus, love it or hate it, is a much better film than the fanboy rants, clunkily written script and the messy cut would suggest.
1. It’s a movie, not a Wiki
There’s three areas that need to be established before looking at Prometheus: the non-direct prequel which allows for further pre/sequels, Ridley Scott’s most recent work, and the way the franchise has been dealt with post Aliens. Firstly, the only behemoth science fiction franchise that ever thought it necessary for a trilogy of blockbuster prequels is Star Wars, infamously one of the most soul-destroying trilogies of all time. Prometheus bares more direct comparison with the unholy Phantom Menace than it would seem on the surface. Both have clunky scripts, both introduce new angles on well established franchises, and both received near-universal panning upon release.
But where Prometheus succeeds is in the way it approaches the prequel idea. As opposed to directly answering questions left by the previous films, it subtly hints and suggests at what might have happened as opposed to Menace’s approach of “because Midichlorians and uninteresting political corruption.” While there’s no shortage of needlessly blunt exposition in Prometheus, the style in which it addresses the lore of the previous films is much more a victory than a defeat. Bluntly stating exactly what happened would have been lazy, awkward, and completely at ends with Scott’s vision for the film (and most likely future films).
2. Scott and direction
Compare Prometheus to Scott’s previous film, 2010’s Robin Hood, and it’s apparent that things could have been much, much worse. A brainless retelling of the classic Robin Hood story, it’s a bland remake that brings nothing new or interesting to the plate. Also note the lead roles’ attempts at accents. Noomi Rapace’s Elizabeth Shaw accent has claimed some criticism, yet it’s nowhere near as bad as Crowe’s vocal tour of the British Isles. Across the space of a single sentence Crowe’s accent awakes in Ireland, takes the ferry across the Mersey to Lancashire, and in his next breath he’s taken the megabus to Cornwall.
While Robin Hood’s visual style is acceptable, the film certainly isn’t, leading to an end battle scene more “Saving Private Robin” than merry men stealing from the rich. Robin Hood was an abject failure and a weak addition to Scott’s portfolio, making his deft blending of Prometheus’ already established fiction with its evolution into new territory all the more impressive.
3. The Context of Franchise
Those disappointed that Prometheus was more Star Trek than Alien are forgetting the previous attempts at recreating Scott’s 1979 masterpiece. The last pure attempt at making one Xenomorph the main antagonist was Alien 3, the flaws of which were more in concept than direction. Director David Fincher’s (The Social Network, Zodiac) trademark style could only steer the film into the realm of an intense character drama with the Alien being a superfluous necessity. Alien: Resurrection on the other hand, is an objectively bizarre outing, a Romero-esque exploration of the nature of the creature itself. While this description of the film makes it sound worse than Fincher’s inherited mess, I hold it as one of the best films in the franchise.
After that are the two worst additions to the canon, the AVP debacles. A pairing of substandard action films with the base premise of “look! these guys fight a bit!” nearly ruins the franchise entirely. Therefore it’s excellent news that Prometheus completely rejects and overwrites the mythos established in these two films. The idea that the Predators gave human life technology is completely rejected by the plot of Prometheus, replacing them with “the Engineers”. (SPOILER ALERT) Also, the idea of the Xenomorph being created on Earth is again shunned by the ending of Prometheus, in which a xeno-like creature erupts from an Engineer after being impregnated by Shaws squid-child (SPOILER END). This represents one of the biggest victories of the film, the reclamation of the canon from the two stupidest entries.
Another factor in the films reception is the question of who the actual lead character is. Those holding the Alien: Again hopes would no doubt attach themselves to Rapace’s Shaw, as is the natural assumption following Sigourney Weaver’s series mainstay Ellen Ripley. Still, the movie is much more interesting when the focus shifts to David, not only is he the strongest character in the cast, he’s the most interesting. He also best represents one of the film’s main themes, the creation of new life.
Prometheus succeeds again in the way it humanizes its robotic character. Whilst David is quite obviously an android, you feel much more attached to his potential for humanity than you ever felt to Bilbo Baggins’ understated human-like performance in Alien.
5. The Beauty and Potential of it all
Prometheus’ visual style is surely the most pleasing aspect of the film, the opening sequence is by far one of the most stunning things I’ve witnessed in a cinema in recent years. The visual trauma that occurs in certain areas of the film is equally memorable; Scott’s brilliant cesarean sequence clearly shows he still know what’s he’s doing. The film’s potential is ambitious and huge, with the themes of creation, robotics, faith, and life and death abound. While the inherent vagueness of these themes may rub many viewers the wrong way, you certainly wouldn’t get things like a passionate fan’s “Alien Jesus” theory had everything just been laid bare.
Despite the atrtiness of it all, the movie is is doing quite well world-wide, a good sign for cinema at large. Continuing a trend started by Christopher Nolan’s Inception, Prometheus helps cement the idea that action blockbusters don’t have to be totally braindead. While the themes maybe clunkily addressed at times, Prometheus feels like a new era for the franchise, hinting at the Alien mythology to come. Prometheus feels like Scott and Lindeloff are hinting at a far wider fictional universe, a new canon that would dwarf the series’ beleaguered past and breathe new life back into a creature that’s a shadow of its former self.
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41 thoughts on “5 reasons Prometheus is a better film than you think”
That last scene literally, no irony – completely sounding like a cliche took my breath away, I was breathing hard for twenty minutes after leaving the theater.
But more importantly how does Prometheus fit within the AvP canon?
that was me after The Avengers.
Great piece! This is the first time I’ve heard about the criticism of Noomi’s accent. I’ve been a huge fan of her work since first seeing The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (Swedish adaptation) and feel that her English is incredible considering that she’s had a decent grasp on the language for little over two years. Antonio Banderas has been “fluent” in English for over twenty and his lines are still, at some points, incomprehensible. Great work guys, keep em’ coming!
The last scene and Michael Fassbender were the best part of the movie. The rest wasn’t that bad.
Your argument has some…problems.
1. The film does hint strongly at the possibility that the Engineers gave humans tech. After all, they created us. It doesn’t say it outright, but it doesn’t “overwrite” the shitty AvP films in that respect.
2. The movie was not panned at all. It’s actually mostly positive reviews, and I think there are as many fans as haters of the film. Fandom can’t be properly gauged, but critics can.
74% on Rotten Tomatoes.
I liked it as well, but I agree that it’s script is not the best. The characterization of David and the hints it drops at its themes are very good, but some characters stupidly and the evolution of the snake-like alien organism is confusing. I can’t make sense of how it evolves into a xenomorph. Can you.
Decent article, bro. Keep writing.
I guess, at the time of writing all i was hearing was a lot of British critics state how disappointed they were with the film which was the main inspiration as well as twitter lambasting which is never advisable to pay attention to.
I kinda disagree on your point about the predators, ok they didn’t give them technology but the roles in both films are distinctly similar to the point that it almost seemed like intentional protectivist revisionism from Scott. There’s a BBC film podcast interview with Scott where he talks about watching the franchise evolve where his views on AVP are pretty vitriolic.
I think as well the whole snake like creature to Xenomorph thing is all to do with the substance/life form in the vases. The Engineer who dies at the beginning of the film is largely credited with creating all building block of life on earth (which could be stated in the film a hell of a lot more than the mild hint), whilst it killed him it also left room for further evolution. You also see maggots eating from the soil of the crypt before the snake things appear. It all seems very inconsistent but thats my theory on it all, going back to the way xeno’s take on characteristics of the host, what ever is exposed to this bio-weapon reacts differently.
Cheers man, much appreciated 🙂
First, let me start off by saying that this is a great article that I completely agree with.
I though Prometheus was a great film and I can’t wait to see where it goes.
That being said, I started reading this article and saw the stuff about the critical response. “Tepid” was the word used. That didn’t seem quite right to me.
It took me 30 seconds to hop over to Wikipedia to check the critical response and see that it has a 74% on Rotten Tomatoes and that tainted the whole article for me.
It is a well written, well thought-out article that makes very good points, but the fact that you couldn’t take 30 seconds to fact-check something in the second paragraph of the article kills the credibility of the article for me and left a bad taste in my mouth the entire time I was reading it.
I’d expect that from some random nerd rage blogger, but you’re on Laser Time and are obviously very good at what you do, which makes that huge oversight even less acceptable.
You’re very talented, I can’t wait to see what more you have to write, and this is 99% a great article. But that 1% is unacceptable from a writer of your caliber. I understand that it is a mistake and I’m not trying to crucify you or anything, here. That’s why I keep stressing the fact that it’s a very good article. But that oversight has really rubbed me the wrong way.
I actually wrote this article around the UK of launch of the film and gauged it off not only the critical response in the UK, gauging it from twitter reaction, Empires 3 star review and British Radio. I think aggregate sites can be misleading, for example hearing a stand-in crew for the regular hosts of BBC radio film program and listening to two non-regular critics and the host kick the utter shit out of the film and not be recorded by the site. Plus by anyones standard the actual comments regarding the film are by definition “tepid” “luke warm” and in some cases “room temperature” the reaction isn’t blazing but then at the same time not cold as an ice queens bra towards it. I will bear checking these sites out in the future but considering this film was hyped up to be a masterwork you can’t help but feel 74% is still a bit short of the mark considering how good it actually is.
I don’t think the movie is as bad as the internet seems to be saying, but I certainly didn’t care for it, and there are three reasons why:
1. If you’re gonna make an ‘Alien’ prequel, do that. If you’re gonna make a movie exploring the implications of meeting your creator, do that. The movie was a confused mismash of both these ideas, and thus failed to do anything interesting with either.
2. Fassbender, Rapace, and Theron all turned in Oscar-worthy performances. Every other character was a ridiculous cartoon. The wacky scientists, Idris Elba disappointingly acting like he was in a Colt 45 commercial, and Guy Pierce looking like fucking Benjamin Button all just bugged the hell out of me.
3. Mother. Fucking. Damon. Lindelof. I’m sorry, but the ‘Lost’ style of writing makes my stomach churn. It’s fine to have ambiguity. It’s fine to raise interesting questions. ‘Inception’ and Scott’s own ‘Blade Runner’ are great examples of that. However, when the script feels like its being made up on the spot, with each scene full of irritating lapses in logic and pointless mystery, it just isn’t good.
Fairly argued points and i tend to agree with you about Lindelofs writing style but you say “do an Alien prequel” how would you have tackled it? The only route i could have seen would be doing Alien: Again, but subbing every human character with a Space Jockey which would be bizarre and would probably absolutely tank at the box office. And whilst i agree with those three performances you mentioned (I don’t actually believe the criticism of Rapaces accent holds true) I actually really warmed to Idris Elba’s character and thought he seemed the most human of the bunch. And with Guy Pierce there’s obviously the TED 2023 viral and the post release viral of him doing his tie up spouting philosophy, i think that his casting could allow further exploration of a young Weyland although I’m not sure how they would carry it out.
Absolutely agree with the Drunk. There are moments where the crew seem really really fucking stupid.
Like where the two scientists are stuck in the dome. They see Engineer corpses that seem to be ripped apart and say so to the captain, and then the captain both hears and sees this and says ‘We got a lock on a life form a few minutes ago, oooop it’s gone, you guys have a nice day.’ Meanwhile the scientists are practically having heart attacks with fear, and the captain’s face never changes from ‘whatever’.
Shit like that all over the movie really brought the experience down for me. It seemed that every character was smart and aware until it got in the way of the plot.
1. Charlie goes into alien ruins. Comes back. Day later he has a bit of ‘Alien in the eye’ syndrome. What does this smart scientist do? He goes on another adventure into the alien funland.
2. Two of the scientists bug out on the first exploration sweep. Ok, I understand that. One of them is the guy that uses highly advance super future robots to map tunnels on a consistent basis. He gets lost… NO! No he does not get lost! There is a rock slide or a door slams down or a force field, OR ANYTHING besides missing one of the 10 turns you’ve taken in the past 10 minutes.
3. Charlie gets incinerated because he caught the Alien clap or what have you. 10 minutes later after the ship is all sealed up you get a life reading from outside the doors. I would expect someone on the bridge to have spoke up about either ‘quarantine’ or ‘lock down procedure’, but no. The captain says open her up. Yet he was standing right beside the dude that got incinerated for being a massive alien spore fuck up.
4. This is the most important one. After all these big questions, after all the ‘Meet your maker’ and ‘Why?’ we get to the part where the Engineer wakes up. David translates to the big guy all the serious questions, and what is his response?
RAAAAAUGH! RIP YOUR ROBOT’S HEAD OFF!
No poignant moment? No simple phrase of infinite wisdom? Not a single bit of story for the big mystery man?
Just raw violence? Please tell me the difference between the Engineer and Sloth from Goonies besides the fact that Sloth had more lines and a better character?
1. I think David sums this point up in the scene where asks “How far would you go to get your answers?”
2. Ok that is a very valid point, and agreed, it does seem stupid but as i mentioned previously, the script and cut of the film aren’t exactly a master work.
3. Again, not sure on this having only seen the film once but i think they read the signal coming from “guy with mad head tattoos” suit (the name escapes me and it’s been two weeks since i saw it). I might be wrong on that one and am seeing the film again on sunday, so if i’m wrong i’ll concede and agree.
4. The last engineer was a pilot headed for earth with an insane amounts of bio-weapons intending to destroy us. This might just be how i read the film but i think The Engineers grew a strong distaste for their own creations and that’s why Shaw heads for The Engineer homeworld at the end.
All this being said though, as flawed and possibly plot-holey as the film may be, i can’t think of a film that’s sparked this much discussion since Inception. Not in the same “OMGZ its amazzin'” sense but a lot more people are talking about it than they would if it was a “The Thing” style prequel where it was essentially the same film in a different camp.
THANK YOU. I’m beginning to to feel like I’m adrift on a wide, stormy sea of hatred when it comes to Prometheus. Sure, the script could use some work, but it’s visually stunning, has some terrific performances (Michael Fassbender turned in what was probably my favorite performance in any film so far this year), has some serious balls (when was the last time we got a decent R-rated summer tentpole film that wasn’t a raunchy comedy?) and showed that Ridley Scott still has got it when in comes to direction. I do agree that almost every single problem with the film can be traced back to Damon Lindelof’s writing, but I greatly enjoyed the film anyway. The fact that dissections and interpretations like the “Space Jesus” one can be made show that this film has more brains than most fans are giving it credit for. It was beautiful and mysterious, things that most modern films utterly fail at on almost every level.
And let’s be honest, here- to the fans saying that “This ruins the Alien franchise OH NO!,” what was there left to ruin? Sure, Alien and Aliens are two of the greatest films ever made (and still are better than Prometheus), but between the admirably flawed execution of Alien 3 and Resurrection and the utter trashiness of the AVP films, it’s nice to see even a halfway decent film with ties to the Alien universe in today’s day and age.
I went to see the film a second time after reading about all the hate. I had all of the supposedly unforgivable flaws in my mind while I was watching it in the theater again. I still really enjoyed it. Just my opinion, but it’s how I feel.
Yeah i completely agree, my friend and his girlfriend went to see it at BFI IMAX in London and they had paramedics on cue for the caesarian scene, my friends girl friend was kinda thankful after passing out there and then too. And yeah there’s recently been big discussion as to the whole symbology of the film and the image of Prometheus (who in greek myth created humans) with that scene in particular being noted for representing the whole eagle/liver scenario.
That’s one of the main points i was attempting to make really, how does a film that has really ambitious intent spoil a franchise that contains two films that were some of the worst abominations in cinema history? Also, i may be in the minority in this but i really do like Resurrection, its basically the Poseidon Adventure + Xeno’s, how can that be bad?
Brought fire to humans, did not create them.
Beside the point — I really dug the flick and I’m bummed so many people disliked it.
http://www.studyguide.org/prometheus_myth.htm He created clay figures to which Athena breathed life into. So he designed human life, so maybe created was a clunky word in that respect but you get my point.
I don’t understand the hate. I really enjoyed it and when it came to answers there really wasn’t anything vague.
(Spoiler territory) The only thing I don’t understand is what lead Fife, the Irish guy with the robots who had his face melted by alien acid and plastic, to lay outside the ship, play dead, and then go ape shit on everyone. I mean that’s fine if he was infected with something and it caused him to be more aggressive but he clearly planned his ambush with the only goal being to kill everyone. It’s not like the aliens whose goal is to reproduce, so his planned out actions with no real purpose confuse me.
Besides that what’s confusing? The white worm aliens were the meal worm like things you saw early on that had been mutated by the black liquid. The engineer ripping David’s head off makes complete sense. It being calm and explaining why would have been like a cartoon where the villain explains his whole backstory and motivation to the people he intends to kill anyways. It had plenty of chances to be cheesy like that and backed off. The final scene where the new alien is shown off was truly great because it didn’t rely on trying to scare through quick camera changes and super close ups of fast moving blurs. It was a slow reveal and that made the final shot of it far more impactful.
Oh wait two more thing I don’t get, why did Vikkers not go into her life boat part of the ship and instead went into a mini escape pod? And my one real issue with the movie that made me want to facepalm right then and there was the old trope of running in a straight line in the place where something tall is about to land. It’s like trying to outrun a train rather then moving to the side and just getting out of it’s path and it really bugs me when they’re that stupid. Rather than run 100 feet forward and still getting crushed just go right and be completely safe after 20 feet.
Why didn’t the Engineer have even ONE line though? Why didnt he say ‘Creation is an abomination.’ or ‘Mistakes must be fixed’ or anything? Not a whole 20 minute speech but… anything. The Engineer was quickly rendered down from this mysterious intelligence of creation to just another monster. We already had enough monsters in the movie, and the movies was set up as if it would answer some of the big questions, but nooo just more RAUUUGH PUNCH!
It is all very vague, and doesn’t quite compare to the sense of Alien’s scientific discovery. Where did the Engineers come from? “A planet”. What was the black goo? ‘A weapon, maybe biological.’ What were the things the Engineers were running from? ‘Aliens I guess.’
I just feel that there should have been one or two lines discussing what the black goo actually was. The “Big things have small beginings’ was a good line, but it should have been followed up by him discussing with Weyland the actual process of mutation or DNA rendering.
Too much fiction, not enough science.
It is vague but at the same time Scotts suggested that we’re two films away from the original Alien, its clear Scott’s wanting to create a wider mythology to which the Xenomorph is merely a part.
Ok so imagine you’re waiting to destroy a planet full of wretched horrible creatures that you created and felt responsible for at the other side of the galaxy. You’re sleeping and one of these creatures wakes you up. Would you not be consumed by instant hatred and anger?
Not when one of them asks me the questions about life the universe and everything. If one of them had a weapon I would. If they were physically imposing I might. Im either case I would use words. I would call them demons or abominations. I would yell reasons why I hate them. I would not only say, RAAAAUGH!
Is that what was definitely asked though? There was no subtitles for what he said in the film I saw, how do you know thats what he said?
Because that was what the whole movie was about? Or maybe you are right and David asked him about immortatlity, in which case the movie should have been called Space Capitalists Weylands Returns.
To me, that whole sceen was just fine. I understand wanting more context but my thinking on it has to do with the fact that the engineers probably consider themselves to be perfect, and then having this old, decrepit, monkey creature show up on his bedside with an even worse abomination next to it ( an andriod made in a humans image, or a copy of a copy) was just disgusting to it. Why would it even want to talk to these things if they were going to be killed off anyway? And who’s to say that this Engineer was even a scientist at all. He may be more military minded than the others of his race and/or maybe he’s just a huge bigot. Hell, maybe he didn’t want to deal with any of that since he hasn’t had his coffee yet and has been asleep for who knows how long. I know some people would rip someones head off in the morning before they had their coffee. I thought his reaction to the situation was understandable givin the fact that we know nothing about him at all.
I agree with most of this, while it certainly wasn’t perfect it is a lot better than some of the purile shit that has come out this year. If any thing I like to think of this film as a diamond in the rough, with a little more polishing it would have been probably the best film of the year.
I thought it was a great movie. I enjoyed myself and so did my friends.
Scrimblog happle hope in the old mans waste basket equals to the shared out amount of three cookies per childish venture
michael fassbender made this movie for me
i still haven’t seen it because i’m poor.
and i’ve listen to plenty of spoiler filled podcasts, because they don’t bother me.
i’m still excited to see it.
but my approach to it will be that i’m going to see a ridley scott scifi movie.
not necessarily an alien prequel. but a ridley scott scifi movie.
that’s good enough for me considering the last films he did.
it’s the same as i felt going into james cameron’s avatar, despite what everyone was saying about it i went in with the mind set of, “i’m here to watch a james cameron scifi movie”
we build stuff up in our minds too much. make them epic.
no one should expect any alien related film to top or even be as great as the original because the greatness of that film was it was so unexpected.
you get one.
after that you travel a different path.
I loved it. I can get over the small stuff that happens in almost every movie that makes it unrealistic. Went and saw it a week ago and am still thinking about it. Also, most of the sites I’ve been to….Amazon, IMDB, rotten tomatoes…..have the majority of people giving it positive reviews.
Holy shit an article im interested in and doesnt bash this movie.
Prometheus just left a sour taste in my mouth for some reason and I still don’t know why. I’d just prefer if it was a standalone film rather than a direct prequel to Alien, sometimes a bit of mystery is preferable to having things explained in such an obvious manner.
I agree with the author of this brill article that the explanations don’t quite reach the level of Phantom Menace foolishness, but still there’s way too much exposition. I just like to imagine that the last 30 minutes didn’t really happen.
This doesn’t read like reasons why it’s better, more like the bad things aren’t as bad as other things that are also bad. Sometimes a movie or game would be fine if it weren’t linked to a series that comes with baggage, but the fact that it doesn’t measure up just nags at you as you watch. I wonder if continuing an I.P. hurts more often than starting a new one?
Just came back from watching the film. And I admit that at first, i wasn’t pleased with the movie a lot. Mainly because I made the mistake of thinking those would be a more direct alien sequel than i thought, and having seen the first two alien movies not a week ago in anticipation for this film, had me expecting the wrong kinds of things from this movie.
But after thinking and talking more about on the way back, and realizing how it’s never meant to be a direct prequel, but just a movie set in the same universe and with similar parallels, well, I was able to accept the movie more for what it is. And I think I like it far more than what i dislike.
Mind you, this movie has a shitton of stupid choices and requires some hard suspension of disbelief at some parts. The aftermath of Cesarean sequence is just stupid: Shaw just got her belly open in a very fast, impromptu surgery, and even with anesthetics and more advanced techonology, I can’t buy that she would be able to even crawl immediately after that, let alone walk, meet Weyland and be pretty conscious and functional for the most part. And let’s not forget that she straight out broke into Vicker’s chambers and used her precious expensive machine, and no one notices, not even Vickers, did she never think to return to her own frigging chambers after all that? And then, everyone else sees Shaw with her belly recently cut open, and no one, NO ONE asks about what was inside, or what happened to it? the hell?
But well, while the film is certainly not nearly as tight and has far more flaws logic and plot-wise than the first to films. What saves this film for me, is the sheer ambition and scope of the themes they are presenting. None of the other two films even came CLOSE to broaching those subjects, and I’m glad this movie did, and I’m honestly very looking forward for the sequel.
So all in all, I’m grateful for an article like this, which helps people expand and think a bit more about what they saw, and not just close their mind like I did at first after the end of the movie. Good job!
This review sounds more like critiques of why its bad than why its good.
I have no reason to dislike this movie except there was no grandiose crescendo, then again there wasnt one of those in the original alien was there
People are so obsessed with film that spoon feed them answers and cant stand ambiguity these days, and that why I like it.
also I like the star wars prequels, but then again I like politics and science(midichlorians).
Hmm some interesting points.
My main critique as someone who had not re-watched any of the Aliens movies in order to get that ‘I know the fandom inside out’ feel, it felt interesting but quite confusing.
I think it suffered from bad editing decisions – the post caesarean scene where suddenly, oh, Mr Weyland, let me tag along like nothing happened at all was really really disorienting and I felt like there were scenes that were cut out that could have helped.
Noomi was wonderful, so was Idris Elba, as always.
So I enjoyed this review, gave me something to think about and more or less affirmed that this is in fact a lovely movie.
And yes – that opening scene was pure beauty that I cannot even begin to gush about.
I loved the movie myself. I went in knowing it wouldn’t be Alien, and I was just wanting the story on the space jocky, but I got a whole lot more out of it. I’ve seen some things that are just nitpicky about the movie but I just turn them off in my head because I know what I liked and this movie just blew me away. It was intense and claustrophobic, and that’s all I wanted really. But this went beyond what I thought of claustrophobia and went right into making my skin crawl. That just makes this movie a win for me.
One thing you brought up that I didn’t think about was how this movie overwrites the AVP films. While I agree that the second AVP was just trash, I sort of enjoyed the first one since you haven’t seen a proper Xeno done in forever. It’s campy and dumb but it just scratched an itch for me. Again, I went into that movie for one thing, and that was to see Xeno’s and Preds hunting eachother, and that didn’t leave me disapointed. I thought it was cool that there was a hero Pred and a hero Xeno to root for.
I’m not sure if I read it correctly, but did you say that Alien 3 was your favorite? I’ve always had a love/hate relationship with those movies since I want to love them but there’s always something keeping me for enjoying them fully, but I never liked 3 at all. The too early CGI was just bad and I could never get into the movie because of that.
Anyway, thank you for the artical dude. You are very articulate in your points.
Yeah I just watched it over the weekend at an IMAX 3D screening and I was just blown away at how Ridley Scott captured such an amazing universe. Maybe that’s why I didn’t notice the less than satisfying script or the accent of Shaw but I quite enjoyed the whole thing. I had picked up that Alien Trilogy Blu-ray set before and was planning on watching all of them before Prometheos (although that didn’t happen).
So after watching Prometheous, and just like how Brett described finishing the original Mass Effect and being so enthralled by it that he started the game over again, I watched the 1979 blu-ray of Alien to continue the story. Watched the 2003 Director’s Cut with commentary and I’m literally blown away of how good this movie all related to how well Scott can do atmosphere. This could be said with Cameron as well, these two always know how to set a scene, how to get the mood right and which shots need to go where. Scott actually said he started storyboarding which helped out immensely on this project, you can tell.
One thing I didn’t like so much, and it’s more apparent with how well Fassbender did his performance, was that in the SPOILER, original Alien film the robotic character Ash acts too much. That was Ian Holm who I thought acted more than some of the human crew members. At the time I initially saw the movie it wasn’t noticable and like I said it’s based on how great Michael Fassbender played his role in Prometheous.
I like how yeah they answered some things but they also left things open. I’ll line up for the sequel to Prometheous.
My two penneth is that taken as part of the Alien series or taken as an entirely seperate films it dissapoints. The main reason is the poor script (noted here already), the first 20 minutes are amazing with David on the ship on his own, all very Moon (which does it better), but after that the character inconsistencies are so great it detracts massively from the spectacle. Examples being:
Trillion dollar expedition across the galaxy but half the crew don’t know why they’re there, okay I’ll let that slide. But presumably these are some of the leaders in their fields (why take them otherwise), however as soon as they land none of them acts with any sort of method at all, simply wandering about taking helmets off and stealing an alien head.
They have a head, it proves alien life is out there and you’re possibley on the right planet, so you let your archeologist stick a cow prod in it till it explodes?
Why did oldman Weyland hide that he was on the ship, what did that serve? He’d paid for it why so strange that he’d want to come along in suspended animation?
The same DNA…… yeah okay……..
Post cesearean, running I can take (super stomach staples), but not a single person bats an eyelid, not even the ones she hit over the head whilst escaping to get it.
Aliens leave a map to their weapons base/research/storage planet. Okay.
The treatment of Therons character, all films it’s implied and made out that she is in the wrong/deserves to have whats coming to her and is a bit of a bitch. But all she actually does is, command the mission, try and stick to good quarantine systems and has a nice room (shock horror heading up the mission and being the daughter of mans business).
So yeah, plot wise it was a fragmented mess, irregardless of being related to a xenomorph. That said, beautifully shot, the acting of the leads was good considering the script, Rapaces accent I can deal with because who says in that many years there won’t be a accent like that in Britain somewhere.And David, any theologising works well in his context, the creator don’t trust their creations etc
I went into Prometheus with zero expectations for how it would link up with the Aliens movies. I’d heard beforehand that it had almost nothing to do with them, which was fine with me. I’m just a big sci-fi fan, and all I wanted was a cool sci-fi flick. But the movie disappointed even that basic criteria. It was beautiful to look at, but the script was awful. It was just plain boring and predictable. Character actions didn’t make sense and none of the characters were remotely interesting except David.
I get that there are all these deeper themes and ideas they’re trying to explore, but frankly in my opinion all that effort is wasted if you don’t create a compelling plot to make the viewer care about unravelling all the mysteries. Prometheus didn’t do that for me.