“This is the perfect sci-fi movie”
While I’m not sure I completely agree with that sentiment, Prometheus, the new quasi-prequel to Ridley Scotts 1979 classic, Alien, is a fantastic piece of film making and is one of the more thought-provoking films in recent memory. While it doesn’t directly lead up to the events of the original, fans will be able to piece together just how this story fits in with the rest of the Alien franchise without too much trouble.
The Prometheus, a spaceship in the year 2093 (about 90 years before the events of Alien) lands on a distant planet to seek the origin of mankind. Finding a giant pyramid-like structure that’s clearly manmade, our crew members investigate and that’s where the fun begins. Among the crew, Naomi Rapace does an honorable job channeling her inner Sigourney Weaver as scientist Elizabeth Shaw. The ubiquitous Michael Fassbender has an interesting turn as a know-it-all android named David. Other cast member of note incude Charlize Theron as Vickers, the stern corporate representative and Idris Elba as Janek, the no nosense captain of the Prometheus.
There are so many great scenes and set pieces in this film, it wil come to rival the two original Aliens in terms of iconic moments. One scene in particular (I won’t completely give it away but it involves a robot surgeon, a ceseraen section, and a squid) was so frightening and tense it gave me chills. The seamless blend of outstanding casting (particularly Rapace and Fassbender) and creepily perfect atmospheric elements elevates Prometheus to another level.
Some may be turned off by the lack of “answers” as the deep philosophical ideas hinted at in this film are not developed in depth (What else would you expect with a script from one of the minds behind televisions ‘Lost’?) Scott is more interested in crafting a visually stunning, often times terrifying piece of science fiction that stays with you long after you leave the theater.
Very minor problems aside, (terrible looking old-age makeup among others) I really enjoyed the story’s through line, visual effects (some of the best you’ll see), production design, score and hauntingly beautiful cinematography. The directing was masterful, acting superb and the semi-ambiguous ending is perfect. If you’re looking for answers to the meaning of life, look elsewhere. But Prometheus is a near flawless entry into the Alien mythos that fans of the original films will love.