Tag Archives: Prometheus

Prometheus Redux Part 3

Despite some great sequences and some interesting ideas, last summer’s Prometheus, legendary director Ridley Scott’s (somewhat oblique) return to the Alien universe, remains one of the bigger cinematic disappointments I’ve experienced in many a year (read the original review here).

When I walked out of the theater a few months back after seeing the film, I nonetheless wondered if I would purchase the eventual BluRay release, which I figured would have some cut scenes included.  Surely there was some trimmed cinematic seconds/minutes of material out there that would more fully flesh this sometimes very perplexing film.


Yet I was on the fence.  Would/could anything “improve” this deeply flawed (to my eyes) work, or would the cut scenes reinforce my feelings that the film was flawed almost from the very beginning and would never become an improved or better work?

Well, the BluRay/DVD was released yesterday and the sale price proved low enough for me to give the BluRay a try.  I immediately put the disc into my machine and moved to the alternate/deleted scenes segment and…


Sadly, the cut scenes reinforced the later opinion.  The film was always going to be a flawed work, and the sequences that were cut didn’t really add all that much more clarity to the overall product.  I suppose the best of the cut scenes was a sequence that humanized Charlize Theron’s Meredith Vickers a little.  There was also a longer climactic fight between Noomi Rapace’s Elizabeth Shaw and the engraged/revived Engineer, but in the end it was wise to trim this down.  It was simply too difficult to believe the injured Shaw would offer that much of a fight against such a bigger menace…a menace that a few scenes before disabled the stronger David in a matter of seconds.

Otherwise, all the movie’s original flaws -again, to my eyes-  remain firmly in place.  I still don’t understand why David spiked the drink.  I can’t understand why Weyland “hid” in the ship…it proved a completely pointless storyline.  The male medical machine, similarly, was an alternately silly and too obvious (look here!  A medical machine…I wonder if it will be used later in the film!?) idea in the end.  If such a machine existed, why would it be designed for men alone?

Then there were the various characters.  Why was Charlie Holloway, Elizabeth Shaw’s lover, so disappointed by what they found?  Sure, they didn’t find living engineers, but they found iron-clad evidence of intelligent life!  Why was he so sour about this?

Jeeze, I could go on and on and on here.

I suppose the bottom line remains as it was before.  Despite some interesting concepts, Prometheus remains a deeply flawed work.  I don’t think there will be a future “director’s cut” that will clarify and improve on what we saw in theaters, at least based on the cut scenes included in this release.  I could be wrong, of course, and perhaps there are a few sequences out there that weren’t included in this release.

Somehow, I doubt it.

Prometheus sequel…?

The Hollywood reporter offered an interesting article that focused on the possibilities of sequels to films released this past summer, given their box office success/failure:


The bit that fascinated me was about what was probably one of the most disappointing films released this summer (indeed, considering how eager I was to see this and the high hopes I had for it, maybe the most disappointing film in many summers!), Prometheus.  This is what they had to say about the possibility of a sequel to that film:

(FOX) studio’s big summer bet was Ridley Scott‘s Prometheus, June’s sort-of Alien prequel. The $130 million-budgeted film grossed a solid but not spectacular $303 million globally, putting it right on the franchise bubble. Fox confirms to THR that Scott and the studio actively are pushing ahead with a follow-up (stars Michael Fassbender and Noomi Rapace are signed) and are talking to new writers because Prometheus co-scribe Damon Lindelof might not be available. “Ridley is incredibly excited about the movie, but we have to get it right. We can’t rush it,” says Fox president of production Emma Watts, who also has overseen the successful reboots of the X-Men and Planet of the Apes franchises. A Prometheus sequel would be released in 2014 or 2015.

Despite my feelings regarding the film, I have to admit that I’d be open to a sequel.  I might -might!- even become excited to see such a thing, provided the story this time around is a good one and not the messy (though undeniably ambitious) story we had with Prometheus.

Going over the reprinted blurb above, the people who did enjoy Prometheus and are eager to see the sequel should note that nowhere in this piece does it say that this potential sequel is a certainty.  Indeed, note how the article states the movie’s gross was “solid but not spectacular” and that because of that it is on a “franchise bubble”.  Yes, director Ridley Scott is “excited about the movie” and is working on a sequel, but Fox president of production Emma Watts does not come out and say this sequel has been greenlighted.

Perhaps I’m reading more into this very short blurb than I should, but I get the impression that the people at Fox are well aware of the disappointment audiences had to the film and realize the Prometheus could have flopped badly.  While it made them money, they may feel they dodged a bullet and whatever profit they made was in spite of the movie’s weak story.  This is further reinforced by the fact that they are talking to other writers about the sequel because screenwriter Damon Lindelof “may not be available”.  One gets the sense that this is a polite way of saying they may not want him back.

However because the movie did make a profit, FOX studios are willing to give the film’s makers a chance to present a sequel concept/treatment/screenplay.  If this presentation excites them enough, they’ll go ahead with the sequel.  If it doesn’t…

Then again, the DVD/BluRay of the film will be released soon enough, and if that proves to be a success they might just warm up to the sequel idea a little bit more.

Prometheus Redux…Redux

This should be my last post regarding the movie Prometheus.  Yesterday, I posted a video that presented a pretty crushing take down of all the things that didn’t make sense/weren’t clearly explained/plot holes in the movie Prometheus.

Today, a link to a very well thought out examination by Cavalorn of much of the mythological (and other) symbolism found in the movie:


Curiously, while the author points out the many mythological elements, he misses what I thought was one of the more obvious ones, that of the myriad ways a parent/child interacts, whether good (trying to follow in their steps, make them proud) to bad (wanting them “out of the way/dead” so they can take over).

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again:  Prometheus is a tough film to discard off-hand.  It fails on many levels, perhaps the greatest of which is that there are so many plot holes/unanswered questions and idiotic characterizations (and idiotic character actions) that it is not possible for me to recommend the movie to anyone.

But having said that, clearly there was considerable thought put into the film and, while it may fail overall as entertainment, Prometheus does present the viewer with many interesting symbols/mythological elements that provide plenty of food for thought…for those interested.

Prometheus Redux…

Red Letter Media, perhaps best known for their epic evisceration of the Star Wars prequels, here offers a nice, tight, compendium of almost all the very frustratingly unanswered questions present in the movie Prometheus:

I have to give the folks above credit, they pretty much hit every question left unanswered in the movie in these four minutes, including a few things I certainly didn’t even think about but, in retrospect, probably should have.

As I said before, it is difficult to completely discard Prometheus (at least for me…many others have!).  I think the film does make a genuine attempt to do something “different” and I admire the whole “parent/child” dynamic they were exploring in all its myriad ways.  Having said that, all these silly unresolved issues really take away from the overall enjoyment one might have of the film.  Will there be a sequel that addresses some of this stuff?  Director Ridley Scott is now 74 years old.  Realistically, he’s only got a few more films in him and I wonder if he’ll ever get to do a sequel to this film…or leave it in other, perhaps less capable hands.

Prometheus (2012) a (right on time!) review

Of the films scheduled for release this summer, there were only a couple I really, really wanted to see in theaters.  Of those, there was one I absolutely would not miss:  Director Ridley Scott’s return to the Alien universe, Prometheus.

In spite of my excitement to see the film, I tried to keep my expectations low, for I knew that sometimes those things lead to a huge let down.  In the end, I chose to see the film in as “good” a format as possible:  In IMAX and 3D.  I sat in the theater and, for the very last time, kept my hopes in check.  The film played out…

…and I found myself incredibly disappointed.

A few days have passed since then, and I’ve taken some time to process my thoughts.  I still feel this film is a major disappointment, and presents the viewer with too many inept moments and silly character actions, yet I nonetheless can’t help but admire what Mr. Scott and company tried to do, rather than succeeded in actually doing.

Prometheus, as the name should imply to anyone with even a casual knowledge of mythology, relates to the Titan Prometheus, who in the fables created man from clay and stole fire from the Gods.  The main theme of the film relates to this as well as the parent/child relationship.  On the surface and just below, this film is filled with references to how children and their parents interact…or don’t.

The protagonist of the movie, Noomi Rapace’s Elizabeth Shaw, is presented as a person that is, ironically, both outside and tied in deep with parent/child concerns.  On the one hand, she’s an “orphan”, who as a young girl lost her father…yet has strong memories of him and hopes to emulate him.  On the other hand, it is revealed that she is incapable of having children of her own, thus of becoming a parent herself.

The two other main characters to follow, Charlize Theron’s Meredith Vickers and Michael Fassbender’s David, have their own parent/child issues, but to go into details about that would involve considerable spoilers.

The symbolism present in the film, I have to admit, has kept me from writing Prometheus off completely, this despite the fact that the film is remarkably -surprisingly- sloppily made, with way too many story holes, paper thin characters, and general stupidity.  Further, the film doesn’t seem to know what it wants to be, trying for a “Chariot of the Gods” type story for much of its run time before lurching into horror only in its final act.

I could spend way too much time going over things that didn’t make sense or were muddled in their presentation, but I’ll focus on one specific thing that bothered me more than anything else in the film…and I’ll try to be as spoiler free as possible:

Why exactly did David spike the drink?

There is never a clear explanation of this, though there are hints, particularly David’s talk with Vickers just before.  But why was it done?  What was the purpose?

Despite some intriguing symbolism, in the end I remain roughly where I was upon walking out of the film.  I admire the attempt to create a “deep,” mythical story, but I simply cannot recommend Prometheus.  I’ve heard there is a longer “cut” of the film that features at least 20 additional minutes of material not seen in the theatrical release.  Perhaps when that version is released, those twenty minutes might explain the whole spiking the drink thing…though I doubt they’ll help make some of the movie’s other problems, including the cardboard side-characters and their fate, any more interesting.

A real shame.