I’ll say right off the bat that this is right up my street. I was a fan of the Alien franchise going in, so I was already sold on Prometheus (2012). For the uninitiated: At the start of Alien, the crew of the Nostromo act like a group of naïve teenagers at the beginning of a horror film. The crew blindly follows orders to land on a strange planet and go onto an alien spaceship, which leads to one of the best examples of sci-fi horror in film.
This was the party cruise.
Over numerous films, the Alien franchise explores a variety of ways people can be killed by acid-bleeding, face-hugging, double-jawed horrors lurking in the darkness. However, they never really answered the niggling question that a lot of geeks wanted answered: “Who was that big, dead alien dude (aka, Space Jockey) with the hole in his chest they found at the start of Alien?”
Given the remaining Alien and AvP films started to lose their way in recent incarnations, Prometheus (2012) brings some of the quality of the first film back. Not to disrespect Aliens, but having one creature as the unstoppable, near mystical bad-ass that can’t be killed is far scarier than hundreds of aliens serving as cannon fodder, which was the main selling point of James Cameron’s Aliens. It’s the former, unstoppable bad-ass kind of scares that you can expect with Prometheus – and then some.
“Noooo. I’m meeeeltinnnng.”
This is the first of three films set to explain the presence of the Space Jockey discovered at the start of Alien. This being Ridley Scott’s first sci-fi film since 1982, you know it’s going to be pretty stunning (Scott’s previous sci-fi films consisting of Alien and Blade Runner). Despite a sterling cast that includes Charlize Theron, Idris Elba, Noomi Rapace, and Logan Marshall-Green all turning in first-class performances, it’s Michael Fassbender who owns every scene he’s in as the android David. It’s to the films detriment the rest of the cast are slightly underused whenever Fassbender is on screen – he screams of “best actor nomination.”
Damn it! Wrong pic. How’d that get in there?
Try this one:
Less like naive teenagers, more like mad scientists, the crew of The Prometheus know what they’re doing and from the outset; They’re hightailing it across the galaxy to a planet where there’s a chance that they might get to meet the alien engineers of humanity. Anybody else think this is a bad idea from the offset?
I don’t want to lay down too many spoilers in this review, so I’ll just say if you’ve even a passing interest in Prometheus (2012), just go. The tension builds at the right pace and as the film progresses there are some amazingly put-together set pieces, each one with enough ideas for a decent writer to spin a whole film out of. There’s more than one good plot twist throughout to keep things interesting. Mix that with well-developed characters, excellent special effects, plus amazing set designs and you’ve got a winning combination.
Is there room for one more in there?
The film is pretty epic in scope and being an Alien prequel, the payoff third act has some pretty outstanding gross out moments. It’s less narrative driven like Aliens; “Yarr, here be aliens, shoot them with the big guns or they’ll kill ye” and more educated and thought-provoking, asking things like, “Who made the alien creatures? Who put humans on Earth and why?”; “Who thought Evil Argento was a good idea?” Despite answering the question about Space Jockey’s early on, it asks a whole load more questions that I expect won’t be directly answered, but certainly explored in the next film spinning this franchise off in a whole new, far more exciting direction.
- Yell! Rating (x/5 Skulls):
- Year Released:
- 8 June 2012
- Ridley Scott
- Noomi Rapace, Logan Marshall-Green, Idris Elba, Guy Pearce, Logan Marshall-Green, Sean Harris, and Michael Fassbender
- Thriller, Horror, Sci-Fi
- Official URL:
- Prometheus Official Site