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Prometheus Review (2012)

Prometheus Review

 

  Prometheus is the latest science fiction horror movie from director Ridley Scott, set within the mythology of the Aliens universe and yet taking us back to a time three decades before Ellen Ripley and the crew of the mining ship Nostromo met the name sake creatures of the series.

 

  Two archaeologist, Doctor Elizabeth Shaw (Noomi Rapace) and Doctor Charlie Holloway (Logan Marshall-Green) find evidence that ancient peoples from around the world might have once had contact with an alien race.

 

Shaw vs Shaw

Maybe next time we Google the names of science fiction characters, before we put them in our movie?

 

  The duo believe that a type of road map was left behind by this mysterious race and with the backing of the Weyland corporation set out on a scientific mission to find a star system that matches up against the evidence that they have already collected.

 

  Soon the research vessel Prometheus is off to investigate the very origins of the human race but what they discover on their voyage might lead to the very end of humanity.

 

 One of the greatest strengths of the first Aliens film was the feeling that the crew of the Nostromo were just everyday people of their time doing ordinary work. It was very easy to relate to the characters even though the film was set in the future.

 

  No one stood out as a hero; no one seemed safe from the horror that was the Alien menace in the first film.

 

  In Prometheus it becomes abundantly clear fairly early on that Shaw will be the main protagonist of the story,

 

  Alien was done with a very hard science fiction feel to it. You didn't have to try very hard to suspend your disbelief to be enveloped in the horrific situation that the crew of the Nostromo found itself in.

 

Astronavigation

Can I get this installed in my house?

 

  Science and scientist in general took a big kick in the happy sack in Prometheus. From the opening scene to the end of the film I just kept finding myself cringing at some of the blaring scientific mistakes that were made and the scientist, oh boy the scientist...

 

  We have two archaeologists able to turn a few black smudges on a cave wall into a map leading to a star system that is several light years from Earth. Do you know how many star systems there are within 30 light years of us? Heck any of them could have fit in with the black smudges on those cave walls.

 

A lot of stars in the Milkyway

How many could there possibly be...

 

  Then we have the geologist/cartographer who gets lost, oh and a biologist whose first reaction to finding the discovery of a lifetime, something that is the dream of just about every biologist who has ever lived saying, screw that I just want to leave right now and go back to the ship.

 

  The rest of the crew of the Prometheus is similarly a bad fit, they make some very bad decisions in the film, and you might even call the entire crew of the Prometheus a band of misfits.

 

Prometheus band of misfits

 

 The trillions of dollars invested by the Weyland Corporation for this mission were definitely not expended in the human resources department. Hey you have to cut corners somewhere.

 

  You know how it is usually not a good idea to drink the local water when you are in a foreign land? Well just because the local atmosphere is breathable does not mean that it is safe to breathe! I am so sick of seeing people in science fiction movies pop off their helmets when they find that the local atmosphere is not too far off from what they are used to.

 

  The philosophical concept of Prometheus is quite interesting, the running theme revolving around the questions of "Why are we here?" "What is our purpose?". In the end it is an exploration of faith and the revelation that the answers we are looking for in life might not be the ones we want to hear.

 

  We get to see this exploration from both a human point of view via the crew and from the point of view of the ships robot David (Michael Fassbender).

 

  In the first Alien film there was a constant growing sense of dread, with a few exceptions in Prometheus, we get glimpses of scenes that are meant to build up this feeling of mounting terror, but it never truly gets a chance to pay off.

 

  By far the best performances in the film are turned in by Noomi Rapace and Michael Fassbender, each of them guiding us on this exploration of faith.

 

  Prometheus leaves the audience with more questions than answers by the end but that is to be expected when you watch science fiction in general.

 

  If you are a fan of the Aliens franchise then you will find that Prometheus expands upon the mythology of the series, but if you have never seen an Alien movie before don't fret because you don't need any foreknowledge of those films to see this one. If you're a scientist, well bring a piece of wood to put between your teeth... just saying.

 

   Final verdict for Prometheus 6/10. Just an average movie, the concept is interesting but you really get the feeling by the end that the entire movie is just setting up a new branch of an Aliens franchise that Hollywood can milk for years to come. Wait for this one to hit DVD/Blu-ray.

 

 ~Professor

 

 

 

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