A Prometheus Review Unbound

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23 Responses

  1. Avatar Patrick Cahalan says:

    Aw, drat.

    And here I was hoping Ridley Scott would not do exactly what you describe here.Report

    • Avatar Sam in reply to Patrick Cahalan says:

      Maybe I just didn’t get it. I keep thinking I must have missed the good part, because I’ll happily acknowledge that lots of other reviewers are giving it Bs, B+s, etc. I just don’t see how it was anywhere close if you bother to think at all about what you’re watching.Report

  2. Avatar DensityDuck says:

    A Ridley Scott movie where the android is more interesting than any of the humans? No way!Report

  3. Avatar Jaysun wolf says:

    I watched the movie today and I never really go off of or read movie reviews. Well sir you said it. The entire time sitting in the IMAX all I kept saying to myself was “Really”. Was this just another puzzle piece to the alien franchise? Is there a point to this movie? Nothing made any sense, the movie did not have any fluidity. Yes it was cool with some of the scenes but it was a complete let down. I’m telling people I know to just wait for it to hit redbox and save their money. Great job keep doing what you do. Be well.Report

  4. Avatar Herb says:

    Haven’t seen the flick yet, but from the moment in the trailer where Lysbeth Salander says “It’s an invitation” with that naive little smile, you kind of know you’re not dealing with the sharpest knives in the drawer. Yeah, lady, it’s an invitation……to your death!

    I’ve been a big fan of Ridley Scott for years, which is why it’s been sad to watch him these last few years. Robin Hood wasn’t a bad film but the homages to Saving Private Ryan were a bit obvious and, well, it wasn’t the most original material to begin with. Then you got Prometheus and he’s talking about revisiting Blade Runner. Maybe he’s done. Maybe there will be no more great Ridley Scott films. It happens.Report

    • Avatar DensityDuck in reply to Herb says:

      In some ways it sounds like a throwback to classic 1950s sci-fi. “Here’s a giant alien machine! I’ll stick my head right in there! ARRRRRR MY BRAAAAAAAAAIN”Report

      • Avatar Sam in reply to DensityDuck says:

        I can’t begin to describe fully the absurdity of the space cobra scene.Report

        • Avatar Jaybird in reply to Sam says:

          I saw this movie last night and I asked Maribou (who has a degree in Biology and, until I derailed them, had aspirations to be a field biologist) about that particular scene.

          She said that that scene wasn’t that far off. You read field biologist memoirs and they’re full of “I had to wait until the parasite was large enough to cut out of my leg before I could get back to work” or “after my flesh-eating fungal foot disease was arrested, I was able to get back to the rain forest” kinda stories.

          That scene didn’t bug her.

          For what that’s worth.Report

          • Avatar Sam in reply to Jaybird says:

            Hold on – did Maribou tell you that biologists routinely taunt unknown species, or merely that they end up exposed to them from time to time? Surely actual biologists behave slightly more responsibly than those two clowns in the movie.Report

            • Avatar Jaybird in reply to Sam says:

              She could see a xenobiologist going up to a new creature that no one had ever seen before rather than, say, finding a safe distance and taking pictures and collecting stool samples after the fact.

              There’s the scientist part of the brain and the decidedly non-scientist part of the brain when it comes to some of the wackier field biologists.

              Think, for example, Steve Irwin.Report

              • Avatar Maribou in reply to Jaybird says:

                Hm. I believe what I said, which may or may not clarify things was:

                “That was an insane way to behave. But it’s the right *kind* of insane, as field biologists go.” I assumed that he’d cracked under the strain.
                That said, leaving Steve Irwin or other TV folks aside, I am routinely amazed by the ridiculously dangerous things field biologists sometimes do. So, his dumb thing struck me as far less dumb than some of the other dumb things they did. (Frex, after Holloway took off his helmet, ALL THE REST OF THEM TOOK OFF THEIRS. How stupid was that? Everyone knows if one guy is that kind of stupid, you WAIT AT LEAST A DAY to see what happens before you take off your own helmets.) Analyzing plausibility for this kind of movie never ends well.Report

  5. Avatar Sam says:

    There is an argument floating around that the movie should be seen as an enormous Christian allegory. I’ll post a link when I’m not on my phone but it makes for very interesting reading.Report

  6. Avatar Richard says:

    Please understand that Prometheus is *not* a prequel to Alien, as I understand it. It was originally intended to be a prequel, but the script that had been written dissatisfied Scott and he got another writer to recreate it, and this time “the film could instead run parallel to those films, such that a sequel would be Prometheus 2 and not Alien,” to use Wikipedia as a source. Scott was unhappy with how heavily the original script relied upon the Alien series and he didn’t want to do that.

    I enjoyed the movie, though I do agree that there were some problems with the story. I hope that if there is a director’s cut at some point, that they address the holes with missing footage, to help clear up some of the issues.Report

    • Avatar Sam in reply to Richard says:


      Respectfully, I find the notion that we’re not watching a prequel laughable in this case. They’re free to say it about their film of course, but I have a hard time watching something that includes all of the following without assuming some interrelation of the two movies: the Weyland Corporation, the horseshoe spacecraft, the space jockey, and a wee baby xenomorph.

      To me, it seems as though they want to play both sides of the fence, wherein they can associate with Alien/Aliens without being bound to honor it by achieving at an equally high level.Report

      • Avatar Richard in reply to Sam says:

        I do agree it’s rather ridiculous. I am a rabid Alien fan and as far as Prometheus goes, I am simply viewing it as an alternate origins story, a reforging of the original concept – it’s just not canon; either that or we’ll now have divergent Alien mythologies, each with their own canon. I simply cannot reconcile it as a prequel given the stark differences, despite the similarities. If Scott or someone else does a Prometheus 2 that bridges between Prometheus and Alien, that’s gonna be even more sticky.

        It doesn’t really matter to me, however, I remain an Alien fan, and I am a fan of Prometheus but more important I am a sci-fi fan. I’m curious to see if it develops any further, no matter where it leads.Report

  7. Avatar Sam says:

    Here is the excellent analysis of the film, one which I find compelling: http://cavalorn.livejournal.com/584135.html#cutid1 That said, it is at least underpinned by a quote given outside of the context of the movie, essentially an explanation offered up by Scott. Without it, I wonder how much of this analysis is possible.Report

    • Avatar Plinko in reply to Sam says:

      We saw it this afternoon. Terrible, terrible film. The linked analysis is seems a bit trite to me, so what if Ridley Scott wanted to make some/all of these allusions? It sort of matters a lot more if the work itself is compelling!

      Beyond the stupidity of the main characters, the film picks up and drops so many threads the movie ends up saying nothing except that people, possessed of hubris or not, get killed.Report

      • Avatar Sam in reply to Plinko says:

        I agree with your sentiment. If you can’t build your analysis without the director pointing you toward particular interpretations beyond those that can be gleaned from the film itself, I’m not sure the goal has been accomplished (assuming that anybody anywhere thought a goal of turning Christ into an emissary of nine-foot tall albinos made any sense in the first place).Report

      • Avatar Snarky McSnarksnark in reply to Plinko says:

        I just got back from seeing it, and I think I enjoyed it that most of y’all. But when I saw that Damon Lindeloff had writers’ credit, I knew that it would not hang fully together: he’s the guy most responsible for Lost.Report

  8. Avatar Joe Z says:

    “Space Cobra” is the perfection description.

    The question I found myself asking after the movie, was “Why was every alien baby different than the other?” You have the squid baby that came out of the main human, and then the Alien-alien at the end implanted by the squid baby into the alien engineer, and then you also have the biologist that the Space Cobra turned into a weird, hard to kill, biologist space cobra (not too mention the scientist who had a little snake popping out of his eye for a second before he got the flame thrower).Report

    • Avatar hazemyth in reply to Joe Z says:

      Yeah, this was a bigger problem than the poorly motivated characters (with their nonsense backstories). There were too many different things going on, too rapidly, without any opportunity for investment or suspense. (Altho I do think it was implied that the space cobras were products of the black ooze and the larval creatures in the dirt.).Report

    • Avatar Jaybird in reply to Joe Z says:

      Why was every alien baby different than the other?

      I want to say that this is canon (fsvo “canon”). In Alien 3, a face hugger hugged a dog and the alien that was born from that gestation was different from the aliens born of man.Report

      • Avatar Sam in reply to Jaybird says:

        I think the idea has always been, vaguely, that the xenomorph takes on the characteristics of whatever it is coming from, but only in a way that creates the most horrific imaginable character. Ergo, squid baby turns into engineer-o-morph-ish-sort-of-thingie. More broadly, the monster has always been much more maleable for the story’s multiple writers/directors. From the singular monster in Alien to the Queen/Offspring model in Aliens, etc.Report