Prometheus (2012): Still Searching

“What has been will be again, what has been done will be done again;
there is nothing new under the sun. ” — Ecclesiastes 1:9

**

We went to see Prometheus on Fathers Day. That’s a ‘family movie’ for us. Literal meaning: son taking father to the theatre, mom gladly tagged along as chaperone.

The quote above was what came to mind as I left the theatre. Haven’t I seen them all somewhere before? The whole idea of advanced ancient civilizations, as one blogger mentioned von Daniken (Chariots of the Gods), or the enemy inside (literally), or a robot watching old films to be informed of the human way (Wall-E). O wait, maybe there are plenty of CGI techniques that are new and that my amateur and non-technical eyes could not pick out. And the fact that I chose not to watch the 3D version means I’d missed out a lot of technical extravaganza.

Let’s just pick up where I left off.

I watched the very first, Ridley Scott’s Alien, in the theatre… that was 1979. In one notorious cinematic moment, the alien bursts out from within a human belly. That’s quite original I think, shocking scene at that time. So there incubates the subsequent alien offshoots, not only in movies, but I’ve read something like that too, unexpectedly, in the book The Astronaut’s Wife.

Prometheus is the latest version of Ridley Scott’s Alien. At the start we see a couple of archeologists/scientists discovering some ancient cave paintings pointing to a star map that they think could be invitation for them to find out the origin of human life. Following their instinct, they are put to cryo sleep and waken up in the year 2093 on the space exploration vessel Prometheus heading towards those stars.

Prometheus is a space ship purely for scientific discovery. It is also privately funded by Weyland (unrecognizable Guy Pearce) for his own agenda, to find the means to eternal life. Heading the ship’s operation is hard-nosed Meredith Vickers (Charlize Theron). Unfortunately, her character seems unnecessary except to deliver a few trite dialogues.

Leading the scientific team is Dr. Elizabeth Shaw, most aptly played by Noomi Rapace (Lisbeth… obvious name derivation). She has a chance to demonstrate her Dragon Tattoo Girl agility in combat, in resourcefulness, in quick thinking, and in acting. She’s a ‘believer’, wearing a cross necklace, always searching for the truth, despite the discovery that her Maker could be a creator-turned-terminator. She wants to know why.

In contrast, there’s David, an android/robot programmed to offer objective and unemotional info in all areas from scientific data to the various scopes of human civilization, icily played by Michael Fassbender (Jane Eyre, Shame, A Dangerous Method…) In a short exchange, David asks Elizabeth why she needs to know the reason for her Maker turning against its own creation. Elizabeth gives the answer: because I’m human and you’re just a robot.

So the search lands them on the moon LV 223 where they find some humanoid creatures with much more advanced technology. But who made them? Soon they see their dangerous predicament as some organic matter inside these ‘engineers’ are still alive and can turn agressive and powerful. Spectacular warfares ensue and lives lost as a result. And I should stop here to avoid giving away any more spoilers.

The movie ends with the idea that the search continues, and so will its sequels…

I’m not a fan of the Sci-Fi/futuristic genre. But I’m glad in the year 2093, these things remain: Chopin’s music, classic films, Christmas, and human’s search for their Maker.

~ ~ ~ Ripples

Published by

Arti

If she’s not birding by the Pond, Arti’s likely watching a movie, reading, or writing a review. Bylines in Asian American Press, Vague Visages, Curator Magazine.

16 thoughts on “Prometheus (2012): Still Searching”

  1. This was playing at the lake this weekend. I opted out for a few hours of reading on the beach before the sun went down. I’m thinking that despite Chopin, I’m glad I did, not being all that big on sci-fi or CGI!

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    1. All for a family outing on Fathers Day. I was willing to bend a little. 😉 Not many to choose from actually. All the movies I want to see won’t be out until the end of the year.

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  2. I loved Alien and even thought Aliens was a pretty good sequel. Scott says this is not a prequel to Alien but everyone I’ve spoken to says it is. I plan to see it, but I couldn’t find anyone to go with me!

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    1. It can stand alone. You can treat it as a prequel to Scott’s 1979 Alien (the ending scene could be a link), or you can use it as the first of a sequel with the title Prometheus. The men in your house must be interested in this one… no?

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  3. Though this isn’t a movie I will likely see, it’s interesting to get your take on it — I’ve read scathing reviews as well as glowing can’t-wait-to-see-again reviews.

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    1. You know, if I can find a rating between 2.5 and 3 Ripples, I’d give the movie that. Since I can’t, and considering the good performance of Noomi Rapace, I chose 3. From the two extremes you mention, I’d easily settle in the middle. 😉

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    1. Well, not much of a celebration except for a tiny decorated Christmas tree and the mention of the festival. At least, it’s not banned, like what we’re having here in some public sectors. As a matter of fact, the film is quite open to bring issues up for debates like God, creation, evolution, good and evil… etc.

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    1. You’re quite an Alien fan then, Stefanie. Maybe you’d like to see this on the big screen with all the CGI/3D effects. I think the major appeals of Sci-Fi like this are the visual and tech. effects.

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  4. Having aliens burst out of people’s bellies is the sort of scene that keeps squeamish people like me at a safe distance from the movie house! Can’t trust Ridley Scott not to be gruesome, so not one I would watch, but always interesting to hear your take on a film.

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    1. LOL! Definitely not your cup of tea, litlove. But sure appreciate your stopping by and reading about something you’d stay far away. 😉

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  5. I don’t know… There’s just so much in the real world that’s interesting and arresting, I have a hard time moving into the realm of fantasy, sci-fi and so on. On the other hand, there’s a certain “camp” genre I love. “Attack of the Killer Tomatoes”, “Tremors”, and so on. Bring on the popcorn, suspend the disbelief and sit back – there’s absolutely no risk that anyone’s going to try to load Layers Of Meaning on any of it. Perfect for summer!

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    1. Linda,

      “Attack of the Killer Tomatoes”… guess I’ve missed that one. You know, after decades of movie viewing, I’m not so easily moved or thrilled anymore. I watched this one with an amused detachment… nothing shocks me that easily now… whether it’s alien bursting out from within, or any other way like they have it here in this movie. (Don’t want to give it away) Once you’ve heard the ‘theme’, the ‘variations’ come as no surprise. That triggered my thinking of the Eccl.1:9 reference.

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