Movie review: Prometheus
Jun 9, 2012 / 11:00 am
Be wary of what you seek, lest you find it. This essentially encapsulates the overriding theme throughout the new science fiction film Prometheus.
Director Ridley Scott returns to the genre which he helped define more than 30 years ago when he made Alien, and what he has created is a stunning film filled with dazzling visuals and terrifying suspense.
I have been looking forward to this film for quite some time now, ever since I had heard that it was a prequel to Alien, which happens to be my favourite film of 1979. It isn't really necessary however to have seen the Alien films before as Prometheus works on its own, but it definitely enhances the experience when you have that frame of reference.
The film begins with a pair of scientists who discover cave pictograms that seemingly link our ancient civilizations to a race of beings somewhere deep in space. Thinking that these beings must have something to do with the origin of the human species, a trillion-dollar space mission aboard the ship Prometheus is commissioned in order to explore their theory.
Noomi Rapace, star of the original Girl With the Dragon Tattoo films, plays Dr. Elizabeth Shaw, a scientist who must find a balance between her religious faith and her work-related discoveries. She, along with her more spiritually skeptical boyfriend Charlie (Logan Marshall-Green), have made the cave discoveries and are now in charge of the expedition. Also along for the ride is Charlize Theron as the corporate administrator from the company funding the trip, Idris Elba (Heimdal from the film Thor) as the ship's captain, and Michael Fassbender, who plays an android named David. Fassbender is particularly effective in his role as the eerily calm robot whose motivations are suspect throughout, and I was reminded of HAL 9000 from 2001: A Space Odyssey.
I won't delve into spoiler territory as to what happens when they reach their intended destination but needless to say that it is not a walk in the park. Sir Ridley does a wonderful job of building the suspense and anticipation and during certain moments the tension is very palpable. When the poop really hits the fan the action moves at a break neck pace and I was gripped to my seat. There are some pretty incredible scenes in this film.
Prometheus is more than a creature feature, however, as it deals with the themes of faith vs. science, creation vs. Darwinism and other philosophical ideas about the nature of our existence. Unfortunately this aspect of the film never gets fully developed and we're left wondering what it all means by the end, but I suppose humans will never truly know where we came from so I can deal with not getting a definitive answer.
Overall though, I found Prometheus to be an epic piece of science fiction storytelling with spectacular 3D visuals that enthralled me throughout. I highly recommend this film to any fans of sci-fi/horror and especially to anyone who's a fan of the Alien series.
You won't be disappointed.
I give Prometheus a 9 out of 10.
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