Monday, June 11, 2012

Prometheus Review With Spoilers

This is a picture of Shaw's baby (the tentacled monster) taking out the lone
 space jockey on the planet that the crew awoke from a 2000 year-old hyper sleep.
 When the space jockey woke up, he was pissed and started killing everyone.
There was no explanation. He shares the same genetic code as a human, but
 clearly was very unhappy that humans had landed on the planet and had
 one thing in mind: pilot a ship filled with biological weapons to destroy Earth. Shaw
stopped him and basically opened a door that had the monster tentacled creature
 behind it that grabbed the space jockey that would have killed her. This was the biggest
face-hugger I have ever seen. It was really impressive.
Well I saw Prometheus at the midnight showing last Thursday, and I absolutely loved it. Here are the elements that fired my imagination:

1) The 3D was stunning. It wasn't too dark or too light, and it didn't feel like they were purposely going out of their way to make trick shots for a 3D audience. This is definitely a "big screen" film, and I feel that if you are a fan of these movies, you definitely want to invest the money to see it in IMAX if you can.

2) Michael Fassbender as David was the most interesting android ever. There are parts where he is on the spaceship, engaging in sports by himself to clearly wile away the time and then he also emulates Peter O'Toole's character in Lawrence of Arabia (by the way Fassbender looks a lot like a young Peter O'Toole, and I had previously not noticed this connection). Anyway, why would an android need to use old movies and sports to entertain himself unless he was bored? And this begs another question...can computers be bored? I have no idea. But it's an intriguing concept. Roger Ebert pointed out in his review that Peter Weyland referred to David as the "son I never had". Charlize Theron plays the daughter of Peter Weyland and there was definitely sibling rivalry there as well as a startling physical appearance (both blond, both tall, etc.). But Peter Weyland strips David of humanity by declaring him soulless. Is this statement true though? I don't know.

3) The concept of parents. David the android says in one scene that "all children secretly want their parents to die". I thought this was fascinating that someone would even say this. I for one don't want my parents to die. I kind of feel that having my parents die will be the thing that makes me really aware of my mortality--that I too can and will die. And I kind of wonder if David said this because he's essentially immortal and wants to know what it will feel like to die and doesn't believe he can do so UNLESS the ones who created him perish.

Additionally, in Prometheus, one of the characters named Shaw is obsessed with finding an explanation of "where do humans come from?" She's Christian in the movie, which suggests to me that she already has an answer. So why then is she doing all of this searching? Does she want proof? Is belief not enough for her? Maybe there is something to the statement "All fanatics hide a secret doubt". What do you think?

Basically, I see Shaw's quest as a search for parentage of some kind and when she finds it, the parents are not what she was expecting. In fact, they're pretty terrifying. Physically, the "space jockeys" look like the most muscular humans on earth, only half again as tall. Take the offspring of NFL superstars like Eli Manning and Tom Brady and couple that genetic code with really tall supermodels for about three hundred years and then smack that offspring with an ugly stick, and you'd probably end up with a space jockey. So really...not all that far-fetched.

And the gist of Prometheus is that this "super race" created humans (basically destroying all of her beliefs in one fell blow) and to top it off, they're jerks. They offer no explanation for what they did, and it looks like they changed their mind about humanity. In other words, the stuff on the world that the Prometheus visits is a biological weapon. The alien xenomorph is a creation manufactured in a lab somewhere and meant to deploy against the human race to wipe us out. But why?

4) The unanswered questions. The end of the show has Shaw zooming off in a space jockey ship with David along for the ride and she isn't going back to Earth. She's going for the Engineer's (space jockey) homeworld. But what does she hope to find there? They clearly wanted humans dead. However, it's been 2000 years since the engineers on this world were in touch with their core civilization. Did something happen to them? Did they get wiped out by their own biological weapons? Or maybe they were designing a weapon to take out their own parents (the ones that created them).

All in all, Prometheus is the magnificent film that I was hoping for, so I'm pleased. I just hope it makes enough money to warrant a sequel. I want answers that the film didn't provide. And I would also like to see how the first Alien movie and the events in Prometheus connect. Where did the derelict spacecraft on LV-426 come from as well as the huge cargo of eggs. The end of Prometheus showed the birth of a xenomorph, but that's basically a harmless lifeform as the planet had no indigenous population really (unless the alien could learn to pilot an empty ship).


  1. Awesome!! I can't wait to see it. I admit I skimmed this post only, because I WILL be seeing the movie. :) Glad to hear you enjoyed it though!

  2. Glad you liked the movie. I hope they make a sequel as well because I want answers. There were a couple parts that disappointed me though. The scene that reveals what the planet was used for should have been more important. Instead, it's the captain who throws out the theory in a 10 second scene as the guy who never stepped off the ship. And as much as I love Charlize Theron, her character was useless imo. Also, Prometheus is an amazing spaceship with amazing technology. The Nostromo was a pos by comparison. I guess towing ships were really, really low on the tech totem pole during its time. I also wished there had been some kind of reference to Alien (maybe I missed it). Still, I hope they make a sequel because it's obvious lv223 is not the only planet that made biological weapons. And, I want to see more of David, preferably with a body attached. (:

  3. I'm glad to hear you enjoyed it! I definitely had a great time, squirming in my seat and making "eeek!" noises during the scary parts.

    We went for dinner after, with the friends we saw the film with. They kept asking each other questions, and I kept being a horrible writer-type.

    Them: "Why did the surgery machine only do male patients? Seems like it would do both, it's just software."

    Me: "Because it heightened the tension for that scene and the screenwriters knew the audience would feel a collective 'oh no!'"

    Them: "Shut up! Who invited you!"


  4. Warning; more spoilers below.

    Whenever I see a cool movie such as this, I do my best to avoid previews (which always give too much away), reviews, word of mouth, etc. I love going totally surprised. The only thing I knew was Charlize Theron was in it, that's it. About halfway through the movie, I began noticing similarities between the sets and his Ridley Scott's earlier film, Alien. Then it hit me, this is a prequel. Brilliant. Now that I know that, I want to see it again. There's so much story to tell between Shaw and the robot taking off, and Ripley happening on the Alien planet a century (or so) later. Very cool.

    Bottom line: I loved it. Highly recommended.

  5. It will take a sequel to answer all of the questions.
    My review is up today. I'll watch it again, but...

  6. I can't wait to see it. I plan to go next weekend. :) I enjoyed the points you make in a review even though I haven't seen it yet.

  7. Hmm? You got me thinking deep about this, 'all fanatics hide a secret doubt'. May I add, 'hide a secret fear'?

  8. So we need a sequel to the prequel to tell us what happened before the first movie--which I don't really care about anyway? Oy vey.

    Anyway, I already read someone's hilarious spoiler-filled rant about this movie on Metacritic. He repeatedly described the "third grade writing" with the leaps in logic, some of which you've already pointed out.

  9. I was on the fence about seeing this movie but you've convinced me it's worth the effort.

  10. @Dalya - the machine only did male patients because it was calibrated for Weyland

    I liked the movie, gave it about a B. I enjoyed it and i looooved Fassbender as David.

    I had a big problem, though, with the scientists not acting like scientists.

    Mild spoilers:

    It started off right away, when they found the cave painting and were just walking around in a cave that hadn't been touched in 35K years. That's a quick way to destroy all your evidence. They do the exact same thing on the ship and then are all sad when the atmosphere starts to break everything down.

    When they find the alien head, they bring it on the ship, then run a scan to see if it's contagion free. Too late! You already handled it and brought it on the ship.

    And the biologist trying to touch the alien worm thing. WTF? No biologist would act like that. And a reptile? If anything it's an amphibian.

    So, yeah. We spent a good 30 min afterwards bitching about a lot of stuff like that. But i still enjoyed it while i was watching it. I think we just need more heavy sci-fi movies. We don't get enough

  11. I bet in the next one they go to find these Engineers or whatever and in the end the bad guys are going to send a load of alien eggs to Earth only the good guys crash the ship Captain America style into the planet from "Alien". Or maybe they'll take another three movies to do that.

    Though really if they're so super smart why don't they have a Death Star to just vaporize Earth from orbit?

  12. I'm hoping to see it in the theater, but I'm not sure that's going to happen.

  13. WITH spoilers? Shit. I'll have to come back later.

  14. Still on the fence about this one. I really hate movies with to many empty holes. Maybe I will wait until it comes out on DVD and include an Alien marathon to the mix.

  15. I'm glad it was everything you hoped it would be!

  16. I have a lot of conflicting thoughts on Prometheus. On one hand, it is gorgeous, as is expected from Ridley Scott. Like some other comments here, some of the characters were acting decidedly unscientific.

    But my main problem is that at some point around the middle, the characters stopped asking questions. It's fine to have a dearth of answers as long as the characters are asking the right questions. But around halfway, the characters just started doing stuff.

    I'd still see the sequel, though.

  17. This is an intimidating looking movie. We don't do R-rated films, so we'll have to wait a bit to either download the filters or for TV to do it for us. Hopefully they won't damage it too much. lol Sometimes the TV editors do a dang good job. Other times they should be shot. lol

  18. Okay, I'm going to come back and read this after I see the movie. I think it looks awesome! Hopefully I'm going this weekend. Glad to hear you liked it. It has to be great, right? Is it going to scare me though? I'm kind of a wimp!

  19. I'm so glad you liked it! :D

    Annnnnd I've just come from Leigh's blog and I'm laauughing at your comment. Camera hog???? LOL. And you MUST come next time! I wasn't the same without you, Michael! You're always fun for fascinating conversation! <3

  20. Well, you've almost convinced me to see it but I doubt if I will. Your review of it was good though.

    As for believers hiding doubt and searching... I completely agree. I don't think they are really so certain, they're just too scared to admit that their fears might be grounded. Just look at Mother Teresa! She was definitely riddled with doubts-- belief doesn't make god real and lack of belief doesn't make god go away. Either god is there or isn't- there just isn't any proof for anybody (even those folks who think they talk to him- and why is god always a him?) that god's there.

  21. I hadn't planned to see the movie but your notes changed my mind. It sounds like the story asks some big questions, which is always good, but for me an interesting twist in a sequel would be to answer the question: who created the super humans? Kind of a chicken-or-egg question.

    As for the Shaw character, she might represent the inquisitive believer, like Kepler or Galileo who saw no conflict in having spiritual beliefs while searching for scientific answers to how and why the universe worked. But try telling that to a fundamentalist.

    P.S.: Loved your phrase "smack that offspring with an ugly stick."

  22. I'm glad to hear it lived up to your expectations!

  23. Now that you've seen it, what movie are you anticipating next?

  24. I'm glad to hear all your waiting has paid off.

  25. I didn't realize this was in 3D. I love 3D movies (when they are done well.) Glad to hear you enjoyed it!

  26. I'll admit I skimmed your post today because I don't want to know anything until I see it. :) I did read the line that it is a magnificent film. :)
    Also, to answer your question about KOTRT group on Goodreads. Authors sign-up and offer their book for free in exchange for review. I hope you check it out.

  27. Considering that I haven't been inside a theatre in years, I'll only see this after it comes to the telly.

  28. I didn't read much past the you loved it. I'm supposed to go see it later this week. I hope.

  29. There are so many mixed reviews out there on this movie... it seems people either love it or hate it... I'll still go and watch it:)

  30. I have to admit I skimmed part of this post because I didn't want to get the spoilers. I succeeded, probably something you don;t want to hear. I'm glad you liked it. I'm a little skeptical from other reviewers, but I still definitely want to see it so I can form my own opinion. Thanks for your well wishes from earlier. They were much appreciated. :)

  31. Sound quite conflicted. And interesting. Except the 3D - I get motion sick, but I'm sure I'll enjoy it on big screen. I'm glad you liked it :)


  32. Glad you liked it. I want to see it soon.

  33. There it is! The review I've been waiting for. I'm glad you enjoyed it. I'll have to catch it soon. Sorry I couldn't make it to your screening. Next time, I'll plan better. :)

  34. I finally saw this movie this weekend and now can come back and comment. Actually I wouldn't comment at all if I didn't feel the exact opposite. The visuals in the movie were great but the leaps in logic of the movie were just too much. The worst was when we first saw Shaw's baby appear. Not only did it feel derivitive but it was silly. I honestly was laughing the entire scene. The rest of the movie she ran around with staples holding her belly together but was able to kick ass.

    Bottom line for me was the base premise was sound and the setting was beautiful but the movie was really really bad because the story was really really dumb. I don't mind a movie that doesn't answer all the questions but this one barely answered anything. It felt like the whole point was the last image but by then they lost me.