Saturday, June 16, 2012

Movie Review - Prometheus

Did Alien and it's three sequels need a prequel? Maybe need is too strong a word. But my thinking is, if there is enough material for a plausible story, then, sure let's have a prequel. My daughter was interested in seeing this with me but she'd not seen any of the series. So she watched the first movie with some friends first. Since I hadn't seen the original movie since it came out in the theaters, it was good to have her perspective.

We both enjoyed the movie. The story is very plausible, laid out well and told well. It goes without saying that the special effects are great and the design is great. Unlike the Nostromo, all dark and steam (how does one run a starship on steam my daughter wanted to know), Prometheus, the ship, is clean and modern, up-to-date for the year 2093. There are a lot of things in the later movies which made it into this one, like the Wayland Corporation, an android with a loose head, face huggers and monsters exploding out of chests.

Which is perhaps the one problem with this movie. It cannot possibly have the same visceral impact as the original (which of course the sequels didn't either), because we sort of know what to expect.

The actors mostly do a good job. Noome Rapace is good as the scientist who discovers a possible link among various archeology sites and a star. In the beginning she has a sort of wonder at what she has discovered although events through the movie make her harder and more determined. Charlize Theron plays the representative of the Wayland Corporation with a certain ruthless efficiency. Michael Fassbender plays the android David with a surface servility but with actions and motivations which never really become clear. Everyone else in the cast are sort of interchangeable, I had trouble telling some of them apart. But if you've seen the earlier movies, you're pretty sure you don't need to get to know these people anyway.

Without giving anything away, I'll tell you that they left things wide open for a sequel. The movie had a $51MM opening so I'll guess there is reason for a sequel.

As a side note, we saw this movie in a Cinemax in their 3D XD large screen theater, with ticket prices going for $14 (vs about $8 for the regular theater). I had thought this was some sort of IMAX like theater but was very disappointed. The screen is nowhere as large as IMAX. The seats were a bit more comfortable but all in all, I won't spend the extra money again. 

1 comment:

Carl Crawford Cards said...

Great review! I love the Aliens films and sci-fi in general, but one thing about this film (and many others!) is the whole notion of the "ancient Aztecs" and the "ancient Maya."

The Aztecs were "officially" conquered by Cortés in 1521, meaning their capital Tenochtitlán was contemporaneous with cities like Paris and London.

Similarly, the last independent Maya polity (there NEVER was an empire!) fell in 1697. Keep in mind, for example, that NY was founded in 1609.

Anyway, until we start talking about "ancient" New Yorkers, enough with that already!