Friday, June 22, 2012

I Review "Prometheus"

            "Prometheus", or as it could be subtitled, "Why are they doing that, it seems really dangerous and stupid?"

            I saw this the weekend it came out, which is very uncharacteristic of me, as I am incredibly cheap, but it looked like a really genre defining movie.  To be honest I have never been a fan of the "Alien" franchise, it is only okay in my opinion, as the first movie is rather boring, and I actually have had no drive to see the others.

            There is nothing in this movie I did not understand.  It did not go over my head, I've read about this soon to be tired concept many times.  The only thing that escapes me is what was going on in the minds of the shitty characters.  People react to things so inconsistently with how a normal person would react (with notable exceptions) that it detaches you from the movie, and grows frustrating.  "Looks poisonous, let me have a lick." "Is that barbed?  Let me check by shoving it up my own ass."

"Jesus, I know we transported down to dangerous locations all the time, but we never had a budget for cool space suits, its not like we had them and didn't use them correctly."

            Let me go over the things I liked.  I liked the main character in spite of her "faith", which is a major point of stupidity in the movie, she openly states that she believes and acts on assumptions she makes without evidence (I can't remember the character's name).  I liked the Captain in spite of him leaving more than one crew member to die in an alien fortress so he could dip his dick in Charlize Theron, honestly she is so pretty and the characters he left to die were so annoying I can't really hold it against him (can't remember his name either). I liked Michael Fassbender's performance so much that I think he should get a best supporting actor nod (though the character does numerous things that make no sense, even in context, even after you have seen the whole movie).  And I really like Charlize Theron, she was a really cool character who was frequently the most level headed and sensible (so of course the movie tries to make her look like the bad guy through a good chunk) (SPOILER: she dies in a really stupid way).

            I very much enjoyed the look of the movie, the Alien colony/base is really creepy and alien in its appearance, because Giger knows how to make alien things look actually alien.  There are several good scenes.  And the ending I feel works, for the most part (though there is a certain cheapness to it).

I typed "Cheap Sci-fi Ending" into google, and this image from "Prometheus" was in the top 15 results.

            What I dislike is so numerous I think I will have a hard time listing it all to completion.  Chief is this: Characters don't act intelligently or with any sense of self preservation aside from those few I liked (and I primarily only liked them because of that trait).  The dialogue does not make sense with what is on the screen many times, with people wondering if the massive obvious structures, runways, and faces carved into mountains are artificial constructs.  The idea that these scientists just confirmed extraterrestrial life and they are not all ecstatic for such a discovery.  And good god: the tired stereotypes that appear that have no place in this type of film, those tropes were made fun of in "Cabin in the Woods" earlier this year.

            I dislike the way people rudely treat the Android character, David (Michael Fassbender), who is for all intents and purposes a human being with intelligence and a will of his own.  I can understand talking to him like a subordinate, he is there to assist, but it comes off so dickish.  I sympathize with the character and I just see him as a character in a movie.  The characters in the movie actually interact with him, shouldn't somebody talk to him as if he were a person using "please" and "Thank you" and asking him his opinion?  I mean, the idea of a sentient machine has existed for so long in science fiction I would like to think that if a group of forward thinking, planet hoping, diverse and adventurous super scientists met a thinking Machine they would be less obnoxious and more curious and open.  These scientists probably grew up in a world were movie making technology was hyper immersive (as evidenced by the hologram technology they used) and since these are scientists they probably are not unfamiliar with Science Fiction presented very convincingly.  These scientists would not be this thick headed... they're fucking scientists.

There is also a lot of goo in this movie.  So much so that at one point all I could  think of was that scene from "Ghostbusters 2" when Ray yells, "SLIME!  ITS A RIVER OF SLIME!"

            There are also little things that just don't make sense from a practical standpoint.  They don't take weapons with them on their initial exploration of the alien structure, and take off protective gear in situations that no sane person would do so (I said, "put your fucking helmet on" out loud in the theater, and had to stifle myself half way through the sentence).  Characters act maddeningly inconsistent (at one point the map maker, who has his own scouting robots, gets lost in the facility).  There are twists so lame, that when they were "revealed" to the audience people saw it telegraphed from a mile away (one reveal actually had a guy in the back of the theater say the word, "GASP" in the flattest tone I have heard this side of Ben Stein).

            And I would say that is my biggest complaint: this movie is dumb.  It has a consistent tone, cool realistic appearance (to a point, the last monster and space gods looked very CGI).  It is just that people make way too many objectively bad decisions for people who are trusted with representing mankind on a 100 billion dollar space exploration mission to find intelligent life.  And being a person who doesn't usually get mad at movies, this one pissed me off.  Which is a shame, the questions they meant to leave unanswered were thought provoking.  It's like a really beautiful a delicious looking cake, that someone walked in and shit on.  You shit on my Ace of Cakes.  It was something great marred by stupid and that makes it all the worse.

            I am actually thinking of more stuff to complain about, as I am sitting down to publish it, I could go on for pages.  And others have.  SHIT ON MY CAKE!

Ace of Cakes.  Like that, but with Shit on it.

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