Writer: Casey LeeWriter Ratings:Overall: Cast: Plot: Effects: Cinematography: Watch this if you liked:
“Alien”, “Aliens”, “Alien 3” and “Alien Resurrection”
Nearly 23 years after being left in the dust, Ridley Scott has returned to blow it off with another piece of the puzzle in the "Alien" universe with "Prometheus". To answer everyone's first question, this movie is very much built in the style of Ridley Scott, who self-directed and self-produced this prequel to the "Alien" franchise. The word prequel here is used because it does predate the movies of the franchise. But just as cryptic as Scott was about its placement in the big picture of the "Alien" universe, "Prometheus" does feel and is a standalone narrative that delves on a different direction in the same universe (of course, shedding anymore details on this will make this review an undeserved spoiler).
"Prometheus" in set in the near future of 2091, when a scientific expedition onboard the spacecraft of its namesake, funded by the Weyland Corporation, arrives on a planet in search of answers to the creators of mankind, based on archeological evidence from ancient civilizations found on Earth. When the rag-tag crew of scientists finds and explores an alien structure, they discover that it holds more questions than answers to the creation of mankind, and different wheels of intentions among the crew start to turn that could spell its unmaking.
Visually, the movie is a technical marvel. This may make your moneys worth to go for the IMAX or the enhanced experience in the third dimension. The spectacularly rendered backgrounds are as eye-popping as a darker tone of "Avatar", and this compliment can only be given to a rare few instances so far. The production design reminds audiences of the architecture and props in "Alien", but intentionally and fittingly more primitive and cruder looking, which adds a layer of verisimilitude that can only come from Ridley Scott's attention to detail, that made "Alien" a defining spearhead of its genre.
The pacing does start off slow to rightfully build the suspense, but accelerates beyond acceptance as it rushes towards the climax, which crashes much of the high anticipation by the end. The smooth flow from the beginning fails to make the transition and gradually breaks into being disjointed and chopped up, as screenwriters Jon Spaihts and Damon Lindelof clearly had some trouble trying to balance the suspense and the shocking revelations. Sadly, this did left some uncovered plot holes along the way and the pretense of any exposition is too insufficient to be ignored.
For such a cast capable of power performances in the scientific crew, it was generally uninspiring, save for Michael Fassbender as the android David. Charlize Theron still hasn't gotten out from the icy demeanor that we have seen in "Snow White and The Huntsman" as Vickers, and Idris Elba can only improvise so much for his shallow-depth character. Noomi Rapace shows that she has the makings of being in the lead as admirably as Sigourney Weaver was, but paired with an increasingly annoying character, Logan Marshall-Green. Each of the performers had their best moments on their own, but failed to click with one another, which does contribute to the dredging pace.
All in all, "Prometheus" is a must-watch for anyone who is a fan of the "Alien" franchise and the universe it had created. It does have some answers for those who are a little knowledgeable of its lore and they may be rewarded for recognizing some of its hidden references and their significance. However, whether you are in-house expert of all things to do with "Alien" or the clueless one, you are leaving the hall with more questions than answers.
"Prometheus" would be shown in IMAX, 3D, 2D and 35mm formats in cinemas in Malaysia and Singapore this 7 June. Cinema Online, 01 June 2012