PROMETHEUS - Grade and Discuss

Discussion in 'Science Fiction & Fantasy' started by Roshi, May 30, 2012.

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Prometheus - Poll

Poll closed May 30, 2013.
  1. A +

    6.9%
  2. A

    11.6%
  3. A -

    13.8%
  4. B +

    18.5%
  5. B

    14.2%
  6. B -

    9.1%
  7. C +

    8.2%
  8. C

    3.4%
  9. C -

    6.5%
  10. D

    5.2%
  11. F

    2.6%
  1. roliver

    roliver Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    This is likely, yes, but why did these "others" hire a bunch of blithering idiots? If they really thought they were travelling to meet a highly advanced alien civilization, shouldn't they have had some ambassadors or something? Someone trained to handle the amazingly important task of making first contact?

    And, if they really thought they were going to meet their makers (in spite of there not being the slightest shred of evidence to suggest this) would there not be religious leaders or priests or....someone?

    If the true purpose of the mission was to try and acquire alien technology to save Weyland, why did they have a geologist on board? I honestly can't make heads or tails of the composition of the Prometheus' crew. It doesn't match the mission.
     
  2. PsychoPere

    PsychoPere Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Well, prior to the briefing, only Holloway, Shaw, Vickers, and David knew what the ship's real mission was (and of course only the latter two knew the real real mission). Everyone else had been hired under some other pretense, apparently - though even they didn't seem to know exactly why they had been hired, based on the bet about a terraforming survey. I'd assume that the people at Weyland-Utani involved in the hiring process were also under the illusion that the mission was something other than what it really was.

    As for the inclusion of a geologist, perhaps Shaw suggested that one be on the crew as an "in case" precaution - she, after all, took the presumed death of all Engineers much better than Holloway did. Maybe she anticipated that possibility, even though Holloway doesn't seem to have considered it. Or maybe it was Vickers or another Company executive who decided to include a geologist, on the chance that something of value might be found on the planet.

    Even though I would expect Holloway and Shaw to have been intimately involved in the selection of the scientists, it's possible that Vickers somehow sabotaged the selection process to spend as little money as possible, considering she never believed in the mission. From some of her dialogue, it sounds like she may have expected to be running the Company upon her return to Earth.
     
  3. God Magnus

    God Magnus Commodore Commodore

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    I really enjoyed this in IMAX 3D. It's one of the few films I've seen in that format that was worth the money. Scott's visuals are just awe inspiring! The story was a bit cliche here and there but at least it followed some cliches I grew up reading in scifi books. :)
     
  4. Warped9

    Warped9 Admiral Admiral

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  5. Warped9

    Warped9 Admiral Admiral

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    There are times I long for the pre-internet days, before massive or a plentitude of spoilers and not quite so much hype and getting advanced information about a film was rarer and harder. I feel today a lot of films can be spoiled by this. Film critics don't help when a lot them practically spill the movie in their write-ups.

    I have as much curiosity as the next person, but I try to balance that out with not buying into all the speculation and expectations. And even so we all have expectations.

    A film is (or should be) one person's vision of how to tell their story. Some choose to spell everything out and others are more subtle and more enigmatic. Is it a flaw to not cater to someone else's expectations?

    Candidly I feel that a lot of disappointment with this film (as with others) does arise from unfulfilled expectations. Succinctly, "I thought/hoped/expected this would be something else, something more..."

    I'm not saying those people are wrong, but I'm posing the question: is the film disappointing because it's not well done, you don't understand parts off it or it isn't what you'd hoped/wanted it to be?

    Thats a question we can only answer individually within ourselves.

    I've certainly experienced films that disappointed me. Sometimes it is because it didn't reach what it set out to do (as I see it). And sometimes it's because I disagree with what was done with the subject matter. I can acknowledge something being well done even if I don't agree with it or if it doesn't really interest me (e.g.: Lord Of The Rings). Sometimes I like a film better down the road than when I first saw it. And sometimes I become more critical of a film after initially liking it (e.g.: most of the Trek films).
     
  6. TremblingBluStar

    TremblingBluStar Vice Admiral Admiral

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    You know, given the amount of nerd-rage directed toward this film, I'd love to see the Internets reactions to Aliens had such a thing existed when that film was released. :lol:

    Aliens was an ambitious action film, but is hardly the pinnacle of cinema so many claim it is today. Many of the nitpicky, detail obsessed complaints made about Prometheus could be applied to that film as well.

    Stupid decisions by characters that get people killed - nearly all of what the marines in Aliens do fits in this category. Two dimensional characters - can anybody name a single character from Aliens other than Ripley who is a fleshed out human being? Unlikable characters - again, with a few exceptions the marines in Aliens were all complete asses that were meant to be entertaining in the shear level of douchbagerry they displayed.

    I tend to agree with the guys over at Red Letter Media who say, in their review of Prometheus, that if you think Prometheus is a horrible film you have never seen a truly horrible film and that if you can't handle a great movie having flaws you should probably stop watching movies and crack open a book!
     
  7. davejames

    davejames Vice Admiral Admiral

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    No, they definitely don't come across like the most professional group of scientists ever, but I get the impression Scott and Lindleoff were going for more of an old school, pulp scifi adventure kind of feel with this movie anyway-- especially when you look at the spacesuits and their obvious, Buck Rogers-style influence.

    If you just look at these characters as being out of an old pulp scifi novel, their behavior makes a bit more sense I think.

    At least, that's how I'm choosing to look at it. :D
     
  8. davejames

    davejames Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Good point. I rewatched Aliens recently, and I was really struck by just how utterly undisciplined and unprofessional these so-called marines were early on. With their constant jokes and wisecracks during a mission briefing, of all things. And in front of their commanding officer!

    I realize it was important for the story to show these guys not taking Ripley or the alien threat seriously, but now their childish behavior almost makes it hard to take THEM seriously.
     
  9. The Mirrorball Man

    The Mirrorball Man Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Burke.

    That being said, even though most characters in Aliens are simplistic, even 2-dimensional, their motivations are always clear, they each have a distinct voice and personality and even when they make stupid decisions, it's in keeping with their characterization and not dictated by the whimsical tone of a haphazard plot.
     
  10. The Mirrorball Man

    The Mirrorball Man Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Talk about damning with faint praise! What you're saying is that the reason these characters don't make sense is not because the writers were lazy or incompetent, but because they were following an old tradition of cheap novels written by hack writers for undiscerning readers? How does that make things better? :vulcan:
     
  11. Lord Garth

    Lord Garth Captain Captain

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    Most of the opinions are mixed or positive. I don't see huge amounts of nerd rage, which I would define as thoroughly negative or relentlessly negative, so I think that's a hyperbole.

    Bear in mind I gave this movie an "A" and it's likely going to be my favorite film of 2012. So, I think I'd be very likely -- more than most -- to pick up on nerd rage if it were genuinely there.

    The emerging opinion seems to be that it's just below Aliens 1 and 2 but above 3 and 4. I personally would rate Prometheus on par with Alien and above the others. Though I'd rank 2-4 closer together than most people would. I like them all for different reasons.
     
    Last edited: Jun 12, 2012
  12. davejames

    davejames Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Well to me the term "pulp scifi" implies something a lot more fun and nostalgic. Along the lines of a Princess of Mars or Thing From Another World or Forbidden Planet kind of thing. Where you have a set of characters out on some grand adventure, and all kinds of crazy things happen to them along the way.

    I don't automatically think of it as this cheap, hacky thing.
     
  13. Asbo Zaprudder

    Asbo Zaprudder Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Excellent article - unfortunately, the film as implemented doesn't live up to its ambitions. A pity - it would only have taken a few script tweaks to the behaviour of some of the "scientists" to make it much better.

    I took the name "David" to be a reference to the android-like David Bowman in 2001: A Space Odyssey - in that film, HAL was the most human and most fallible character.
     
  14. Sci

    Sci Admiral Admiral

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  15. The Mirrorball Man

    The Mirrorball Man Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Fair enough but no matter what our personal preferences may be, pulp sci-fi (or really, any kind of pulp literature) is at its heart a cheap, exploitative and disposable form of entertainment designed to thrill rather than uplift. I mean the genre itself is named after cheap paper stock! That's hardly the best way to explain away Prometheus' characterization problems.
     
  16. The Mighty Monkey of Mim

    The Mighty Monkey of Mim Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Someone earlier in the thread tried to dismiss the shoddy character writing in Prometheus by comparing it to that in Alien. Well, the night after seeing Prometheus I watched Alien, and let me tell you, the very first thing I was struck by is how strong the sense of character is in the latter compared to the former, especially given that we receive almost no personal information about any of the individual characters whatsoever. Yet we have a very strong sense of their characters simply in how they interact with each other and respond to the threat as it develops. I do not think the characterization in Prometheus is anywhere near as clear and consistent, despite us having a great deal more information about the personal lives of the characters.

    Secondly, I would point out that Alien is a horror movie, and the fact that the only purpose of most of the characters was to run around and get killed by the alien is acceptable within the context of a horror film. Prometheus does not seem to have been conceived, written, shot, or edited to be a horror flick. It clearly aspires (and doesn't entirely fail, either) to be more of a grand rumination on big ideas like the origin and development of life, the inevitably more challenging questions one finds when one probes into the roots of one's own creation, etc. So really it should be held to a higher standard than a film that is essentially, as Pauline Kael put it, "a haunted-house-with-gorilla picture set in outer space."
     
  17. Relayer1

    Relayer1 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    For true nerd-rage you'd have had to get me within two or three hours of coming out of the cinema when I saw Alien 3...
     
  18. DarthTom

    DarthTom Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    I think people's expectations were that this film would live up to Scott's ground breaking film Blade Runner which undeniably was way ahead of its time.

    IMO, Prometheus isn't way ahead of its time nor is it ground breaking cinema, but it's for sure grand entertainment.
     
  19. Saul

    Saul Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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  20. Pingfah

    Pingfah Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Don't read them then :shrug:

    The only thing I knew about this movie going in was that it was a Ridley Scott movie, a few of the cast, and that it may or may not have something to do with Alien.

    It really wasn't that hard to avoid spoilers.