PROMETHEUS

Huh? I was pretty much with this movie through the first half, although it starts out (slowly) as a mash-up of space movie conventions from 2001 to, of course, ALIEN, to EVENT HORIZON (and many
more). But when it began explaining the mystery, I began losing my grip, sinking ever faster into a fog of incomprehension. The production design is impressive in that dark, Giger-ish way, but the real stars among the effects are the holographic creations, including
one that makes a robot ecstatic. (That a robot would be able to experience joy is just one of the things I didn’t understand.) At the end, the message goes religious with serious, dull talk about belief and the quest for meaning and the hint of a sequel, and a final,
ectoplasmic sop to monster fans that shows us why PROMETHEUS is a prequel. Noomi Rapace gets knocked near-senseless so many times, it almost turns slapstick. After the tenth toss through the air against
something hard and bone-crushing I was making up cartoon WHAM! POW!
sounds in my head and picturing chirping bluebirds over her ragdoll
crumples. Fassbender turns C-3PO into HAL 9000, taking the fey out of
both; Logan Marshall-Green is like a cute Jeremy Piven; and if women
had mustaches, Charlize Theron would have twirled hers; it may have
worked in SNOW WHITE AND THE HUNTSMAN, but she doesn’t sell it here.
— Jeff Schultz

If Ridley Scott knows how to do anything (and obviously knows several more), it’s Sci Fi. So it’s no surprise that PROMETHEUS is a better than average Sci Fi thriller. Is it a prequel to Alien? I won’t give that away. But it’s a worthy comparison to make. From the opening scene accompanied by Marc Streitenfeld’s remarkable score it’s obvious this is not an amateur or pretender’s movie. This belongs to the king. Noomi Rapace and Logan Marshall Green are archaeologists who have uncovered a hidden message in the drawings and glyphs of ancient races. So, they set off in the intergalactic vessel Prometheus to find who left the messages. Credit to Scott for getting right into the action. He could have made it about half-hour longer with more story set-up, but it would have made the movie too long. The explorers arrive at their destination but do not find what they were expecting. There are a bunch of aliens and clues to what’s really going on. Rapace is good, but is overshadowed by Michael Fassbender, Charlize Theron and Idris Elba (yes, Stringer Bell is captain of the Prometheus). She just doesn’t have the screen presence to completely pull off what Scott is asking of her. The 3D works, adding depth and perspective to the whole look of the film. So, while it’s not perfect, mostly Prometheus is edge of your seat excitement. And you really couldn’t ask for much more. — Alan Yudman

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