I think the more I have pondered on Prometheus, my attitude towards it has altered slightly. But I still maintain that there is no coincidence that Lost was all about great set-ups with incomplete finishes – clearly the writers of this film have a lot to answer for. Regardless of this, here is my original review from two weeks ago.
In the not too distant future, scientist Elizabeth Shaw (Noomi Rapace) and her partner Charlie Holloway (Logan Marshall-Green) discover a series of ancient drawings, and in them find an invitation to a distant world with the possibility of answers to mankind’s oldest question – how did we come to be? When Shaw and Holloway are employed by Weyland Industries to join an expedition to the mystical planet, things soon take a very sinister turn.
The world has been waiting 33 years for director Ridley Scott to return to the world of Alien. Although Prometheus has been cited as a ‘cousin’ to the first film rather than a direct ‘prequel’, there is still enough here to see a direct correlation between the two. But for those expecting the blood curdling brilliance of the 1979 sci-fi horror, you will be sadly left wanting.
As much as one would hope to call Prometheus a classic, it really isn’t. The first half of the film is atmospheric, tense and engrossing. But the minute a flamethrower gets used to eliminate a certain character; Prometheus descends into a convoluted spiral of brash and brainless cinema. Any subtle nuances put in place up to then are lost amongst confusing developments and unnecessary revelations. Because it’s at this point we realise the film has no emotional backbone. The film professes to be loaded with subtext and theological musings – and it is. But this all falls by the wayside when Ridley Scott becomes pre-occupied with fitting in allusions to Alien.
There are a few scenes of brilliance, with one scene in particular being outstandingly horrific. It’s a moment which takes some of the thinly veiled body horror metaphors of previous Alien films and brings it into a new generation. The bare bones of Prometheus show a promise of something brilliant, but the flesh is weak, flabby and slightly rotten. Despite this, it’s a film that is exceptionally well made and the cast are faultless.
It’s just a shame then, that the plot has more holes in it than John Hurt’s chest.