Movie review: Prometheus directed by Ridley Scott

Directed by: Ridley Scott

Elizabeth Shaw: Noomi Rapace
David: Michael Fassbender
Peter Weyland: Guy Pearce
Janek (the captain): Idris Elba
Meredith Vickers (the commander): Charlize Theron
Fifield: Sean Harris
Year: 2012
MPAA rating: R (18+ only)

My impressions:

If you happen to have too few problems in your life, go and start looking for aliens.

A filthy rich and terminally ill tycoon is financing an expedition to find our alien ancestors. He sends a top-of-the-range ship with a crew consisting of scientists from different fields to a distant galaxy where a planet similar to the Earth has been found. You see, some scientists, having looked at different ancient bas-reliefs, stone stellas, murals and such decided that our alien creators have left us an invitation in a form of pictograms, indicating where they dwell and how to get there. Isn’t it lovely? Just hop into a space ship and go!

The whole trip is smooth enough and, of course, as soon as they reach their destination the troubles are waiting. The fact that their commander, a coldly beautiful blonde straight from a Nazi’s wet dream (Charlize Theron), follows her own agenda doesn’t help either. The only android on board, David, is a shifty customer as well but you can hardly blame him- apparently he has been modelled after that tycoon so he has no conscience.

The planet is empty and unpleasant but soon enough our lovely scientists stumble on an interesting structure, probably designed and constructed by intelligent beings (a stroke of luck indeed) and start exploring. Yee-haaaw! While sightseeing they find: a) a lot of gravel and dirt b) some dead bodies of giants c) small containers full of strange dark goo – items definitely worth risking your life while travelling years in the state of deep hibernation don’t you think? They take one head of a dead giant with them and return to the ship but there is a sand storm or rather a silica gravel storm so not all of them manage to make it. Two people, the most unpleasant people among the whole crew I should add, have to stay trapped in the structure and play dungeons and dragons. Or hide and seek. Or merry-go-round.As the victims are where the director wanted them to be the bloody mayhem begins – hardly surprising for anybody who has seen any of the previous movies of the Alien series. Remember – aliens are hungry and baaaaad. Your-guts-are-soon-spilled-on-the-floor bad.

In the end only two characters survive and they are hardly in a good shape (highlight to learn more – a spoiler ahead). One of them misses his head – good thing that, being an android, he doesn’t have to breathe. The second happy survivor is dr Elizabeth Shaw – a woman who had to perform an emergency cesarean in vivo. On herself. If your mom has repeatedly said that unprotected sex is a no-no this movie might actually provide additional and rather graphic proof- it was one of the most sickening scenes I’ve seen for a long time but an alien child is no laughing matter. By the way a giant ancestor can be as agressive as your average thug so it is also an argument against looking for long-forgotten relatives. Not very pro-life and pro-family movie you must admit.

Ok, time for some conclusions. The movie leaves you with far more questions than answers which surprised me a bit because it was supposed to be a prequel to the older Alien movies, like explaining this and that. As it is, it rather looks like a beginning of a new series altogether with a big cliffhanger at the end. As usual pepare yourself for a fair dose of violence although compared to other Alien installments this one was not so bad. If I am to be honest, though, I have been the most scared while watching the first Alien (8th Passenger of Nostromo). No amout of gore can frighten you as much as something you  simply know nothing about and in that movie a certain cat died as well so I was scared and devastated at the same time.

There were several inconsistencies but one that made me gasp. You see, the blonde commander had a very advanced medical robot in her suite of rooms but it didn’t support any gynaecological procedures – it was designed just for treating MEN. Say what you might but if I planned such a dangerous, long-lasting mission with a MIXED crew on board I would insist EVERY possible procedure was added to that little technical wonder just in case. I gather, being so advanced and all, it couldn’t run out of memory chips, could it? I would do so especially if I happened to be one of the WOMEN, a commander and also a daughter of the main sponsor.

Finally I was a bit disappointed that the Aliens proved to be every bit as murderous as those other slimy, squid-like monsters, following them close behind (they always follow food). I know that violence can draw crowds and apparently is is far easier to organize a blood bath in a movie than a serious philosophical discussion about the most essential questions plaguing the humankind (like the origin of life and the aim of our existence). Still, wasn’t this movie supposed to be just about these more serious issues? About Prometheus, the Greek Titan who gave the people more than any other god, sacrificing his own life? It seems to me that the director started very ambitiously but finally, for a reason or two, chose an easier option. Pity.

Final verdict:

If you are a fan of Ridley Scott movies, sci-fi or the Alien series I think this film will be a must. I have to admit I was left a bit disappointed at the end but I never got bored while watching it so perhaps it wasn’t such a horrible waste of time. Still some scenes were disturbing – see for yourself (and it is still just a trailer!)

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