Prometheus

Prometheus

Director: Ridley Scott

Writers: Jon Spaihts, Damon Lindelof, Dan O'Bannon, Ronald Shusett

Cast: Noomi Rapace, Michael Fassbender, Idris Elba, Charlize Theron, Guy Pearce, Logan Marshall-Green, Sean Harris, Rafe Spall, Benedict Wong, Emun Elliott, Kate Dickie, Branwell Donaghey, Vladimir 'Furdo' Furdik, C.C. Smiff, Shane Steyn

Synopsis: A team of explorers discover a clue to the origins of mankind on Earth, leading them on a journey to the darkest corners of the universe. There, they must fight a terrifying battle to save the future of the human race.

MPAA Rating: Rated R for sci-fi violence including some intense images, and brief language

Big things...have small beginnings...

As I mentioned in my review of "Rise of the Planet of the Apes", one of the hardest things about a prequel is not only does it have to sync up with the events of the original movie, but it also has the daunting task of standing on it's own. In most cases, prequels tend to be "hit or miss" with most people.

Take the "Star Wars" prequels for instance. Some fans claim that it not only met the hype, but exceeded it; while introducing the franchise to a new generation of viewers. However, most old school fans claim that the prequels are terrible, and ruined the franchise because of the prequels emphasis on action versus focusing on the story, like the original trilogy. Needless to say, the prequels were met with mixed reactions, while suffering from harsh criticism by film critics.

However, that's not to say there aren't some prequels out there that are well received by both critics and audiences. Take "Rise of the Planet of the Apes" for example. That film not only managed to sync up with the events of the original film, but it also created a story that was compelling enough to stand on it's own merit; while appealing to most audiences and critics.

As for what does any of this have to do with "Prometheus?" Well, lets get into that now. The film is essentially a prequel to the classic "Alien" movie that debut back in 1979, as it explains the origins of the iconic alien creatures; while completely disregarding the continuity of those god awful "Alien vs. Predator" movies that don't exist, as far as I'm concerned.

Although to most audiences, it won't seem like "Prometheus" syncs up to the original movie, but if you have a keen eye for detail, then you'll notice subtle hints that it does perfectly. Take the alien spacecraft for instance. The shape of it resembles the same abandoned ship that Ripley (Sigourney Weaver) found in the original film.

(Warning: Possible Spoiler Alert) Not only that, but around the ending of "Prometheus", there's a distress call sent out as a warning to people to stay away from the planet. Something that was also hinted at in the original "Alien" movie as well. Granted, most average moviegoers won't pick up on these little "tongue and cheek" references, but if you're a science fiction buff, then you'll find it very amusing to see those references linking up to the original quite nicely.

Although there is one thing that doesn't make sense about the ending, as it does leave it open for a sequel. However, I won't spoil that for readers. After all, the only thing you need to know about the story is that it follows a spaceship aptly dubbed "Prometheus", as it's been traveling across the universe in search of an alien race that's rumored to be the creators of humanity on Earth.

A pack of scientists investigate the place, in hopes of meeting their extraterrestrial makers. However, what awaits for them on this uncharted planet, it turns out to be way more than they bargained for. And, that's all you need to know about this story before seeing it.

Like the original film, "Prometheus" goes right back to formula. Not only does it slowly build up to the first appearance of the alien monsters, but it also plays upon the psychological tension build up to create the dark eerily creepy atmosphere that the original movie played upon perfectly. Using the dark cold environment, along with the subtle tensions, to keep the viewer at the edge of their seat in fear.

Just when you think you've figured this film out, it throws you in for a loop that immerses it's audience inside this dark scary world of unknown fear. The alien monster designs are very original, and surprisingly creative. Although I wouldn't say the designs are anywhere near as creative as the iconic alien look, but these do come pretty darn close.

The special effects are fairly impressive to look at, as it creates a very unique atmosphere. Although I hesitate to say if this film features the best visual effects that I've seen before, but it's still impressive nonetheless.

As for the acting performances, I have to say that it's amazing to watch how well this all star cast meshed together. Granted, some of these characters are a tad one dimensional, at first, but as the story plays out, we soon realize how deeply complex most of these characters are; which only makes the movie that much more fun to watch.

Sadly, I wish I could give it a higher rating, but the film leaves a lot of questions at the end; leaving room for a sequel. Therefore, it doesn't answer all the loose ends to tie itself to the original franchise, but at the same time, it doesn't answer all the new questions it raises either.

Overall, if you're a huge fan of the "Alien" franchise, then "Prometheus" definitely delivers. Unlike those lousy "Alien vs. Predator" films that focused on action over story, "Prometheus" puts the emphasis back on story and tension build up; which made the original movie such a classic. If you haven't seen "Prometheus" yet, then I'd highly recommend it at a rating of three and a half out of four.



Nostalgia Critic's Review of "Alien Resurrection" (Warning: Contains Violence, Spoilers and Adult Language. Parental Discretion is advised)

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