Prometheus Review


So, I finally saw Prometheus this weekend. I’ve wanted to see it for a long time, but it hasn’t made it to NetFlix. Then I found it on VuDu and got the HDX version with my new fancy Internet connection. What with the broadbanding and the high-deffing and all.

If you’re not familiar with it, Prometheus is Ridley Scott’s return to the Sci-Fi genre after his amazing gift called Alien. This movie is supposedly something of a prequel, but he didn’t like that term during production and pre-release. In some ways, I understand why.

Alien is one of my all-time favorite movies. It established a standard for science-fiction/horror which I feel is unmatched visually and emotionally since. Nothing comes close to its claustrophobic and xenophobic horrors. Then along came James Cameron, who was given permission (somehow) to start mucking with the franchise’s canon and feel. It went downhill from there.

So, Ridley Scott’s return to science fiction, to rescue the franchise he established, was much anticipated.

In the end, the movie wasn’t very much like I imagined. At all. I suppose sometimes a movie leaves more questions than it answers in the minds of viewers, but honestly, there’s a point at which you defeat the purpose. I could write mysteries with no resolution too, but they won’t be very popular. Audiences like answers; at least some.

I’m not saying it wasn’t a good movie. It entertained me the whole time. But it also had its share of pointless scenes which could’ve been cut without hurting anything. And I’d have liked the universe to be more consistent with the one established in the original movie. The more they address this, the farther from canon they seem to get, and honestly, when that happens, I drop out. I’m not interested in that sort of wavering.

“Creative License” issues aside, the effects were top-rate, the acting was pretty decent, and the story was… interesting. I don’t buy the initial premise to start with, so I’m rolling my eyes from the outset. But, if you give it a little leeway…

I guess the question I always have seems to be, is it really that hard to keep to original canon? Really? All I’ve ever had to do is watch the original movies and maybe some of the bonus materials included on the DVDs, and I could probably do as good or better at keeping the worlds these people create intact and the rules of their universe in line.

On the other hand, this was a Ridley Scott movie, and if he wants to muck with his own story lines and universe/world-building, who am I to say he can’t? He’s rich and I’m not, and I guess he who has the gold makes the rules.

The movie does leave open the possibility of future sequels, but it did a really, really crappy job of tying back into the original franchise, in my estimation. And that’s too bad. It was a chance for Scott to really put something out there to close the circle. Instead, it felt like he wanted to take off in a new direction. It didn’t work. Not to me, at least.

But then, I’m only one viewer.

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2 thoughts on “Prometheus Review

  1. Dude. C’mon.

    There is nothing reaaaaly “out of cannon.”

    Oh, BS. There was a LOT out of canon. As for cannons… well, I saw a flame thrower, but not much else.

    There were all kinds of secondary… uh… monsters, depending on which species got face-hugged.

    But those aren’t from the ORIGINAL canon. All that crap came later.

    The fact that the genesis of the creature we know as THE Alien came from mixing the worm monsters with an Engineer “God” was pretty cool. It says “Hey, the byproduct of these things is horrible, but the byproduct of these things with an Engineer is REALLY horrible.”

    And then at the end they took off with a cargo that would/will/did destroy the planet of the Engineers. Right now I’m guessing the Engineers live(d) on LV-462.

    I don’t know. I sort of got the impression from the original movie the Engineers were on their way someplace else when they got facehugged.

    Then again, I’m saying that the whole “The Engineers were overwhelmed by their own WMD that backfired” angle was a complete red herring. Misdirection. There are lots of those mistaken assumptions in the franchise. I say the Engineers knew EXACTLY what they were doing. Just like the Egyptian temple workers who were encased in the tomb they built along with their Pharaoh, so the “energy video” was of rank-and-file Engineers getting closed into their own booby trap. Those ships were just booby traps in stasis, waiting for any civilization that gets advanced enough to find them, so they can be wiped out and start over again… without usurping or surpassing the Engineers.

    Well, there’s that. Good thoughts there.

    I could be wrong. I was initially disappointed, just like you. Then the sh!t kept bouncing around my head for a couple of days and I think Scott has laid some train tracks that might go somewhere really cool.

    Maybe I have to let it stew for a while. Maybe watch it again. I dunno. I just came away not thinking much of it, and believing he tried to hijack the franchise so he’d be able to go elsewhere with it after all the garbage everyone heaped on it. Can’t say I’d blame him, but the change was too sharp, and I didn’t think it led to the original movie well enough. But like you, I could be wrong. It’s not the first time it’s happened, and won’t be the last. :)

  2. Dude. It’s a prequel. Not a sequel. It’s an origin story.

    Yeah, and mucking with the origin started in the first sequel. That this one veered is the issue for me.

    There’s more than one continuity of how Bruce Wayne became Batman. There’s more than one continuity (now) or how Peter Parker became Spiderman.

    And that, m’man, is where you and I won’t see eye to eye on this. There is ONE story for Batman, ONE story for Spiderman, and every OTHER story is simply an updating of the origin story. If the story changes, it loses me. PERIOD. I don’t go there. I like my rules set in stone for awesome franchises. I have NEVER considered other stuff to be canon, only to be entertainment.

    At this moment, there’s a single continuity about how THE Alien came to be THE Alien.

    AND there was only ONE story about how those xenomorphs propogate. Black oil goo? Borrowed directly from The X-Files, or was that from Spiderman’s black-suit-cum-alien-life-form-joke symbiote? Not good. A veering.

    Before it’s over there will be some heartbreaking RetCon, no doubt. But as it stands…

    So far, so good.

    Eh. I’m not convinced.

    20 years from now when you’re rewatching Alien Vs. Predator Vs. Engineer II streaming from the embedded chip on your forehead… You’ll look back wistfully at how non-buggered the continuity was at P1.

    True, dat. No one will care but me. Hell, no one does NOW, never mind in 20 years.

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