Thursday, June 07, 2012

Prometheus

Call me crazy, but I wouldn't want to go investigate the gigantic head thingy.
Some people can't wait to see Prometheus because it's a Ridley Scott movie. Some people can't wait to see Prometheus because it's a Ridley Scott movie that, in his words, "shares some of the same DNA" as Alien. (Just call it a prequel already, brotha!) Some people can't wait to see Prometheus because of its stellar cast, which includes Noomi Rapace (the original Girl With the Dragon Tattoo), Michael Fassbender (fully clothed this time, folks—sorry!), Charlize Theron, and Idris Elba (also both fully clothed—double-sorry). Some people can't wait to see Prometheus because its ever-present ads and trailers are making it look like a Not To Be Missed Epic Summer Movie. And still others can't wait to see Prometheus because they will always support anything Damon Lindelof (co-creator of LOST and co-writer of the film in question) does. Needless to say, I was a part of that latter bunch.

I went to a press screening of the film last week and have been DYING for others of "my kind" (read: LOST nerds, or just nerds in general) to see it so that we can discuss. The funny thing is that I can't say I was a big fan of the movie overall. But, as with LOST, Prometheus left me pondering some big questions that I was still debating with my husband three days later. And there's certainly something to be said for that.

So it's about a team of people on a spaceship (Prometheus) who have traveled for the past few years (frozen so they're not aging) toward a planet that two archaeologists (Noomi and a jerky guy played by Logan Marshall-Green—completely unconvincing as a romantic couple) think might be the home of the "Engineers." The Engineers, this couple believes, are aliens that created human beings. Noomi and her man want to asks these aliens some questions.

Well that's all fine and good, but one example of the sloppiness in the story was that the rest of the crew learns what the mission is about AFTER they've woken up from years in hibernation and are about to step off the ship. Huh? Wouldn't that kind of presentation be given before anybody even boarded the spacecraft?

So they get to the planet and, as you can guess (or know from the trailers), all hell ends up breaking loose. As things unravel, there were some scenes that seemed—like the presentation sequence referenced above—a bit amateur. Would someone EVER really think it wise to get up in the grill of an alien creature and not expect to be attacked? I mean, come on. How cliche. What's more, an entire subplot having to do with the Weyland Corporation seemed pointless. Did Guy Pearce's character (CEO of Weyland) and Charlize's character (a Weyland employee overseeing the mission) really need to involved at all? All that was a distraction. And don't even get me started on a certain character's miraculous ability to MOVE—much less walk, run, shoot, or fight—after a very invasive and urgent, um, surgery.

There were other scenes, however, that I found to be creative (I'm talkin' 'bout holograms) and chilling (pretty much everything having to do with Fassbender's android David) and memorable. Noomi Rapace is definitely a star. Everything looked stunning, too, and I didn't even mind the 3D for once. And finally, as I mentioned earlier, I thought the Big Questions Prometheus raised kept my mind whirring enough that I was still toying with ideas from the film days later and am anxious to hear others' thoughts about them now.

Here are a few to chime in on in the comments, if you'd like. I'll write these in a non-spoilery way in case anyone who hasn't seen the film yet is hangin' around.

1) What was your interpretation of the opening sequence?
2) Why do you think David (the android/Fassbender) did what he did?
3) Was your interpretation of what the Engineers were planning to do the same as the characters'? (Mine wasn't.)
4) What exactly do you think was in all of those black cylinder thingies? (I have an opinion but am curious as to what others think.)

If you read this in order for me to tell you whether or not Prometheus is worth seeing, my answer is yes. Yes, it's worth seeing on the big screen in all of its glory, but lower your expectations because I don't think it will be going down in the history books as a sci-fi classic.

- e

6 comments:

tina_nettles said...

I guess I'm assuming that the ongoing conversations for days later are about big things that have to do with life and not implausibilities that keep occurring to you that interfere with remaining glad you saw it? Men in Black 3 did the latter to me because of all the plot holes and/or time paradox problems, which diminished the long-term enjoyment of having seen it, the longer they kept occurring to me!

Livia said...

Prometheus looks interesting. I would see it if it wasn't for the genre - horror and the rating. It looks sorta creepy. And it definitely looks like a box office success.

PS: I went to see Snow White and the Huntsman and man that film is good. I love the soundtrack - especially "Breath of Life" by Florence and the Machine.

K said...

1) Seeding of Earth's "gene" pool. I am sure they came back several times to make sure things were evolving to plan.
2) Either orders from his boss to test the substance, or I'd like to think he sees a chance of creating life of his own.
3) Perhaps the purpose of earth was to be a host pool for the substance, or perhaps just a failed experiment that needed to be restarted.
4) I think the goo is a mutator substance that has some sort of end result coded into it. The murals at first indicate it is set to make Alien like creatures, but once contaminated with the earthworms DNA, it starts making all those lovely beauties we see. Basically, it kills the host and uses the host's essence to make something new, much like the first scene of the film.

Erika (aka "e") said...

K -

I love your thoughts. Here are some of mine for each question:

1) Agreed, but it seemed pretty strange that it was like this self-sacrificial thing. And the alien that did the deed took some of the black stuff to apparently morph into a new creation that would (eventually) become we humans. Seems like if they were that advanced they would find another way without having to sacrifice one of their own!

2) Some people think David was acting on orders from the old dude (Guy Pearce's character) and/or Charlize, but I think he just hated that guy and/or wanted to see what would happen. Or it was meant to be kind of a mirroring of the whole "destroying your creator" concept -- the humans thought THEIR creators (the Engineers) were trying to destroy their creation, and this would be the opposite.

3) My thing here was that I was NOT convinced the Engineers were coming back to destroy the Earth. I think that was a really big conclusion that David (and then the others) jumped to and why the film kind of fell apart at the end for me.

4) Agree about the goo -- it's like they collected species from all over the place and make new things from them or something.

The movie STILL has me thinking!


- e

Locke Peterseim said...

Here's a few more for ya ;)

www.youtube.com/watch?v=-x1YuvUQFJ0

Livia said...

I'm seeing Prometheus tomorrow. It looks epic and a great movie to see. The film looks like more sci-fi than horror and that's what I like, it doesn't have much horror. It just has weird-looking aliens killing humans and vice versa. It should be fantastic.