Prometheus Is No Alien – Not Even Close

I’ve decided to blame the Avengers movie and film critic Roger Ebert for wasting time I could’ve spent cleaning grout with a toothbrush. That’s how bad Prometheus was. If I hadn’t seen highlights of it during Avengers and read Roger Ebert’s review, I probably wouldn’t have given it much thought. But I got a little nostalgic thinking about when I first saw Ridley Scott’s Alien. Aside from nearly scaring me to death, it made my list of really great movies. Prometheus didn’t even come close.

To its credit the cinematography was quite breathtaking. Even the android, David, gave me pause. If just a modicum of characterization instilled in the soulless android had gone into the other characters, I might have cared about them a little too.

Anyway, in the beginning this at least 8-foot tall, male-looking being known as an ‘Engineer’, ingests a black goo. As its body begins this real cool disintegration, it falls into the water, strands of its DNA permeates the earth, and thus creates human life. Forget about God created the heaven and the earth and Darwinism and the Big Bang Theory. The so-called ‘Engineers’ made us. Why did they make us only to turn around and want to destroy us? And the really big question: Who made the ‘Engineers’?

Dr. Shaw, a brilliant scientist, who also happens to be quite religious and her partner, get the backing of a very very rich donor to find the answers to those very questions. So enters the Prometheus and its ragtag crew. Yes, I said ragtag ripped straight out of Alien even though one would assume such a rich man, seeking eternal life, or whatever it was he was seeking, could have afforded a much better crew then that sorry lot.

Unlike Alien this movie had a lazy quality about the writing. There was no tension buildup. The dialogue was like something you would hear in a dumb horror flick. Not only that, the characters did things you wouldn’t expect from true professionals. So much was left unanswered. Scenes just started and ended abruptly. People got lost in spite of having mapping and communication systems. An ‘Engineer’ is asleep right in the middle of a project.

The absolute weirdest scene was a C-section done robotically on Dr. Shaw. An alien was ripped out of the woman and her middle stapled back together. Instead of bleeding out she injects herself with a pain blocker, takes what appears to be pain pills, and keeps it moving. Bloodied and in pain she ends up smack dab in a room with David the android and the supposed dead billionaire getting ready to pay a visit to the alien ship. No one seems the least bit surprised to see her all bloodied. After some back and forth between her and the old guy, she suits up to go with them. She is now SUPER DR. SHAW.

Then they are there. The ‘Engineer’ is awakened. All hell breaks loose. The ‘Engineer’ boards a space craft and takes off. Somehow super Dr. knows its evil intent. She conveys this to the ship’s captain and the seemingly cold and hard Meredith dissolves into a coward and beats it the hell out of there.

Captain Janek, deep in alien territory with no worthwhile weapons if you can believe that, decides to ram the alien spacecraft with his to keep it from leaving. The two remaining crew members, god only knows what happened to all the others, decides to accompany their captain on a kamikaze mission. After some bantering the captain rams the ship into the other and brings it down.

More stuff happens but let’s just say the last super woman standing is Dr. Shaw. And what does she do? Instead of heading home she zooms off to get answers from the very beings she says wants to kill us. I can picture it now. “Hel-looo! I come in peace.” She fingers the cross around her neck. “I promise I won’t take up much of your time. But could you give me the name of your creator?”

Usually I watch a movie for the entertainment value. But some are so ridiculous it is hard to let go. Prometheus is one such movie. With so many plot holes and unanswered questions it has become a homework assignment.

FYI: I smell a sequel. What about you?