Prometheus:’ Tracing Human Origins The Stylish, State-of-the-art Way


Where do we come from? It’s a question that has perennially haunted scientists, philosophers, researchers, and regular folks even, and the same is addressed in the visually stunning latest Ridley Scott film, “Prometheus.”

Originally written as a prequel for “Aliens” but later on revised to introduce a relatively different storyline, “Prometheus” explores the possibility of us humans meeting our own maker, our “engineer” as it was dubbed in the film, with a team of experts traveling light years away to a place that’s far from heaven but might hold the answer to one of the biggest questions of our existence.

The story is brought to life by magnificent visuals shot entirely in 3D, looking so stylishly crisp in that huge IMAX screen, and a sound design sharp enough that it’s as if the audio is right inside your ears.

What may well make our jaws drop is how the future technology was envisioned in this film: a giant TV screen that looks like it’s embedded on the wall, a surgical chamber that can perform medical procedures with a touch of a button, as well as that 3D life-size hologram that could create the illusion that you’re in the scene that it projects. And oh, we also have to mention the Rubik’s cube-looking device that flashes state-of-the-art scientific presentations through a holographic screen. This whole visual captivity made it hard for us to get our eyes off the screen, even during the gross fest scenes featuring alien creatures that are disgusting enough to make you lose your appetite (you’ve been warned).

The year is 2093, and the team of experts gets on board the majestic vessel Prometheus for an expedition to a distant galaxy in order to test the thesis of the pair of archaeologists Elizabeth Shaw (Noomi Rapace) and Charlie Holloway (Logan Marshall-Green) of our makers’ location. The voyage is funded by Weyland Corporation, represented by the skeptic, self-important Meredith Vickers (Charlize Theron). Their initial discoveries are promising; however, danger ensued as they lurk further into the unfamiliar territory. The quest for a breakthrough turns into a nightmare they have to get out of.

While “Prometheus” takes us on one heck of a thrilling ride, there are knots in the story that are left tangled, contributing to a level of ambiguity. One is that of a character’s death, the mystery of which has not really been delved into. And although the ending is predictable, it nevertheless provides a strong hint for a sequel, which will, hopefully, offer more answers than questions. If a standalone film, however, “Prometheus” doesn’t feel all that complete.

Another plus of this movie lies in the dedicated performances of its cast, most notably of Rapace (“The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo” Swedish version), who gives an intense, awe-inspiring portrayal of Dr. Shaw. Her character can be an inspiration to women, for them to take charge of their own life, their own decisions, and their own survival. Michael Fassbender (“X-Men: First Class”) is also believable as the android David, whose knowledge stock makes him look a champion of any quiz bee. The actor manages to find the balance of the heartlessness that his character requires while still giving it a tinge of human emotion. Theron (“Snow White And The Hunstman”), meanwhile, is subtly fierce yet has this omnipresent vibe in her every scene.

On a more profound level, “Prometheus” poses the question of how important tracing our origins is to our own existence. “If you never try, you’ll never know,” as a line in a Coldplay song goes. But then again, don’t we live for who and what we really care about?

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