Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Problems with "Prometheus"

If you haven't seen this and are one of those people bugged by spoilers, don't read the following.
  1. If I hear one more person talk about 'answering the ultimate questions' I will personally gouge out their eyes, as happened in one scene. It first occurs during Shaw's dream sequence when she's in hibernation, when she and Holloway are giving their insipid, stupid presentation to the rest of the crew, and then later several times. See 8.
  2. How does David know so much about the "little" things that killed the Engineers? First, he knows to bring one of the containers back with him. Then he opens one up like it's a coffee can.  Then, he puts it in Holloway's drink.  Then he tried to hibernate Shaw after she's been impregnated. 
  3. Why must everyone treat David like a fucking asshole? Seriously, if I had a walking computer that could do amazing things, I think I'd be taking his comments and questions very seriously.  I would find them fascinating.  Instead, everyone in the film is like, get out of my way, robot.  It was only 2093, not 2400, a date when, perhaps, robots might be totally old hat. But Vickers says something demeaning to him early, and there is the pointless tete-a-tete with Holloway in which he again demeans him.  Even Weyland mentions how poor David lacks a soul.
  4. Since when do scientists completely ignore all contamination procedures dealing with potentially alien organic life forms? Only after the second expedition does Vickers stop Holloway from re-boarding after he is infected.  Before this, she had no problem when they brought the Engineer head on board.
  5. Is Vickers a robot? I hope so.  Because that could explain how uninteresting her character really was.  She wasn't even that threatening. See 23.
  6. Why did Holloway get so depressed when he found out the Engineers were--or at least appeared to be--dead? I mean, he's ready to abort the mission after a several hour expedition?  He realizes "It's a tomb" (which didn't really follow anyway, since there were no dead bodies in that room) and then he acts like his dog just died for the rest of his very short life. See 21. But this is a script problem. Not an actor problem.
  7. Did they have to impregnate Shaw? I mean, really.  That was just stupid and pointless, given we'd already seen two other ways that these creatures infiltrated the bodies of other organisms. Obviously pregnancy is the cineme, if there is a cineme, consistent through the entire "Aliens" series. It is never really thematized until "Alien Resurrection", which is one reason why I like the latter (perhaps "Aliens", although there it is motherhood, fundamentally) regardless of Brian and Karl, but it never really gets a thoughtful treatment. But there was no basis for this in "Prometheus".  It seemed tacked on.
  8. If I hear one more person say 'that is my belief', like it is a license to disbelieve the given, I will personally gouge out their eyes, as happened in that one scene when Frankenstein-biologist showed up.
  9. Pacing? Must everything be edited like a music-fucking-video these days? This was a movie that was three hours long and cut down to two.  At least I hope it was.  Things happened much, much, much too quickly. Ever watch some Ozu, Ridley?  He could teach you a few things.  
  10. Ridley Scott had his day. He's done. "Bladerunner", fucking amazing. Beautiful. Though, it was Rutger Hauer who made the film so wonderful.  But since then, nothing that great. And "Alien" was not really as good as "Aliens". Yes, "Thelma and Louise" was good, but that was based on a good script and good actors … well, at least Susan Sarandan and a young Brad Pitt and Michael Madsen … I also liked "Black Hawk Down" as an excellent action film, although it was unequivocally racist.  Yo, skinnies are people too.  People.  Human beings. They have human motivations as well. See 23.
  11. If you are landing on a planet, wouldn't it be a good idea first to survey it first, aerially or by some late 21st century means, before landing, so that you know the best site to land? As far as we know, they just happened to find these temples.  Based on the narrative, it could have just as easily happened that they landed elsewhere and found nothing and went home. In "Alien", a beacon drew them to the ship.  That makes sense.  You don't just land a ship anywhere, after spending traveling for two years ...
  12. If earlier you were told there may be life in a portion of an alien dwelling distant from you, you decide to go the opposite direction, when a reptilian creature suddenly appears before you why do you then become playful and friendly?  Especially if you are a biologist?!?
  13. "Invitation"? Just because there are pictures of giants with primitive humans in cave dwellings?
  14. Must we really pose doubt about evolution again? If, say, the Engineers were our genetic predecessors, how does this imply that they designed us? And why would than imply that evolution might be false? Are these people remedial high school students, or supposedly, well-trained scientists?
  15. If David has repeatedly betrayed you, to the point of almost making you into a meat vessel for an interesting alien life form, a la Paul Reiser's Carter Burke in "Aliens", are you going to then trust him to pilot you to the Engineers' home, rather than again betray you and take you and some of these aliens back to Earth?
  16. If the Engineers tried to kill you, why would you then want to go to their home?
  17. Why would you assume that the Engineers meant to "abort" their children or kill their robots, if a few Engineers killed a few humans?
  18. Where did that crazy fucking octopus come from? Yes, it was the aborted thing having been taken out of Shaw's abdomen, but what I don't know is how it grew some 10 to 15 times its original size in a matter of a few hours.  This is a problem I have with the entire "Alien" series. How, within a very small period of time, does a small creature (the hatchling) manage to become an adult, some 10 times its original size? Isn't the law of the conservation of matter involved here? Must there not be a significant amount of feeding to assist the transformation in size? But that did not obtain …
  19. How many alien life forms were there? Were they related? How did the exploding head relate to them?  Why didn't the biologist's head explode?  Why was the biologist crouched like a spider when he showed up outside the ship?
  20. Is there any reason to believe, at the end, that the alien that emerged from the dead, previously impregnated Engineer, is linked to the other alien life forms?  
  21. Why would anyone cast Logan Marshall-Green … in anything? He must be a really awesome guy. But he is a horrible actor.  
  22. Why Guy Pearce as a very, very old man? Why not just a very, very old man playing that role? Seriously, what is the point of casting Guy Pearce for that role? Guy Pearce has done good work, but not consistently enough to be someone that a director must have. And he's not known for his impressions of old-timers. 
  23. "Ridley Scott instructed Charlize Theron to stand in corners and move in lurking movements, in order to accentuate Vickers's distant, enigmatic nature." IMDB Trivia. Again I say, if this is how he instructs actors, quit now. Quit hogging the opportunities and the money … 
  24. Since when are state-of-the-art surgery devices only programmed for men?  And if they can be quickly reprogrammed, again, why are they only programmed for men …
  25. Is it easy to walk around--can you walk at all, when you have a ten inch incision through all of your abdominal muscles, that has been quickly stapled shut? That was a rhetorical question. 
  26. Okay, a couple people on board have tried to make you into a meat vessel for an alien species, but you've overcome them.  After that, everything is more or less copacetic, such that you'll accompany them to meet the apparently living Engineer?
  27. A suggestion: never allow Jon Spaihts and Damon Lindelof to write a script for any other film.  Also, read it before you begin filming. Allow for revisions.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

you are not wrong on your points. The movie was very thin on intelligence.

A few more for you that you have may have thought of since:
1) Why does that guy turn into a violent zombie freak instead of just plain dying like the Engineers did? They did have similar genetic makeup right?

2) if it is a 4 year total mission with a risk of dying in chrio why only send one of each specialty?

3) Why did they borrow so much form the Myth video games (holographic recordings, sound and button controls)

4) If there were more ships and silos why didn't one of them finish the mission of extermination on earth?

5) Is it a good idea to go to the home planet and say "how come you want to kill us?" wouldn't they go and finish the job?

6) If the stuff is so dangerous why not destroy the site after abandoning it? OK...maybe it was a rogue religious sect acting on their own illegally.

7) why didn't the 2 women run to the side? were they really going to out run a massive space ship rolling their way?

8) why have a skull on the outside but a nice human bust of 30 feet inside?

That last one is a bit thin so I will stop typing now. Like you I was disappointed.