Saturday, June 9, 2012

Review: Prometheus

If you're aware of Prometheus at all, you're probably aware that it was initially pitched and billed as a prequel to it's director's seminal classic Alien. But supposedly director Ridley Scott changed his mind for a variety of reasons part way through filming and elected to downplay the Alien aspect. So while there will be moments you'll get find more interesting if you've seen Alien enough to recognize all the mini shout outs and references, it really doesn't affect the story much. Yeah there'll be a couple moments you won't chuckle at, but if you don't know enough it's not really a problem. For me, it was Ridley Scott's first sci-fi movie since 1982 when he made Blade Runner, IE my favorite movie of all time. And while Prometheus is not as good as that, I don't think anyone could tell you it's not good.

The story is concerned with Noomi Rapace as an alien obsessed archeologist. She finds evidence suggesting that Chariot of the Gods might not be BS and finds a moon out in deep space where she thinks the alien creators came from. So she heads out there, with the usual supply of characters, plus a scheming android with his own agenda.

While I want to gush about the technical details, first I want to gush about the acting, oddly enough. This is the movie that conclusively proves that Noomi Rapace can be more than Lisbeth. She gives a hell of a performance, in a role that seem tailor made for her oddly physical style of acting. And just last week we were discussing how Charlize Theron is best in a villain or at least unlikeable role. Well here she is, doing it again, this time in service of a better movie. But the odd standout is Michael Fasbender as the android. He's doing an incredibly committed performance and manages to make everything about him, from his expressions, to his voice to even his posture seem just a little off. The movie would be worth seeing, just for his incredible performance.

Fortunately, it's worth seeing for other reasons though. The cinematography, the music, the editing, it's all frankly incredible, but then we all knew that. Ridley Scott is one of the most technically proficient directors currently working and he puts out some of his best theatrical release since Black Hawk Down. It's easily one of Scott's best directed films in near on a decade.

There are some issues, at least a couple of which make me want to wait for the director's cut (Ridley has this happen a lot, most notably to Blade Runner but also Kingdom of Heaven. Seriously, everyone should see the director's cut of Kingdom of Heaven, it's like a different movie). The second act is a little overlong and takes a while to get going. The characterization can be a little awkward sometimes, both with the main characters and some of the canon fodder. The script is a little weak at times, more in the story than in the dialogue. And it's hard to ignore the fact that most of the people on the ship are essentially stock characters.

But none of those issues stop Prometheus from being worth seeing. Unless Moonrise Kingdom is playing near you, Prometheus is probably the best thing in theaters right now, so go and see it. Unless you can see Moonrise Kingdom. You know what, fuck it, see them both.

Elessar is a 22 year old Alaskan born cinephile and he found the Alien style title sequence awkward with an O.

No comments:

Post a Comment