PROMETHEUS Speculation/Discussion (Potential Spoilers)

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PROMETHEUS Speculation/Discussion (Potential Spoilers)

Postby Alex Kane » Tue Apr 24, 2012 6:30 pm

Okay, so let's talk about Ridley Scott's Prometheus. I can't recall ever being this excited about a film, other than maybe Revenge of the Sith. Some of my earliest memories are of watching Scott's Alien for the first time, and then Cameron's 1986 sequel. (My folks were pretty lenient about what I could watch, and I'm thankful as hell for that. Imagine if I'd been limited to watching children's programming; probably I wouldn't be doing what I'm doing today.)

Anyway, I've had my theories for a while about what might happen in the flick, based mostly on watching the trailer ten or so times. I watched the 2003 Director's Cut of Alien on Blu-ray just last week, and today I watched the original '79 theatrical version with Scott's 1999 DVD commentary track. Between the two viewings, I've noticed quite a few things that lead me to some conclusions about what Prometheus might entail.

The first viewing, years after I'd last seen the film, I noticed that the xenomorphs', or Giger creatures', eggs are veiled not only in an atmospheric "mist," as Kane calls it, but also by a kind of barrier. Then the action that triggers the first facehugger's actual hatching is when Kane physically touches the top of the egg.

After listening to the '99 commentary track by Scott, he seems to confirm my conclusion, which is this: the eggs are in a kind of containment field -- or, as Scott calls it, a kind of "placenta" -- that has kept them preserved for quite some time.

Furthermore, Scott offers his basic explanation of the relationship between the xenomorph eggs, the Space Jockey and the Derelict. He feels that the Space Jockey must be one of a once larger crew who have obviously been dead for a long time, but jokes that he has no idea what happened to the others (this, I think, was probably the creative impetus for doing this pseudo-prequel in the first place, but I digress). The eggs, then, must have been -- according to Scott's explanation -- weaponized creatures on board as military cargo.

So: While I don't think we will get to actually see any Giger aliens on-screen in Prometheus, I certainly think we'll see a facehugger or two, or at least the eggs themselves. If I recall correctly, there is a hole in the deck of the Derelict's bridge, which looks to have been eaten away by acid prior to the Nostromo crew's arrival; that suggests that someone in Prometheus will probably get attacked by a facehugger. My partly unfounded estimate, though, is that no one in the film will actually get a xenomorph embryo successfully implanted inside them.

Scott has said that the film contains a scene comparable in effect to the infamous chest-birthing scene from the original film, and elsewhere mentions something about a character performing a C-section on herself. This doesn't sound like something that would work for ridding oneself of a xenomorph, since it hatches from the chest, rather than the uterus.

My theory, purely speculative, is that the Space Jockey is . . . either Charlize Therone's character, who we see little of in the trailer, or David, the android played by Michael Fassbender. His character feels ominous and morally ambiguous in the various viral campaign videos that have cropped up online, and moreover, the trailer seems to suggest that the antagonist in this film will be born from a sticky green goo of sorts, which might lead to a kind of Invasion of the Body Snatchers symbiosis, which in the arena of science-fiction cinema could radically alter a character's appearance.

If David's body is composed of Gigeresque "biomechanical" components, or even synthetic DNA, then it doesn't seem too much of a stretch to think that the Space Jockey might be the result of alien DNA meshing with humankind's synthetic biotech work. (Plus, I think it would be cool to watch an android merge with an alien symbiote and then rebel against its human creators.)

I imagine Fassbender serving as the similar Ash character, or even the chilling "Archos" from Daniel H. Wilson's Robopocalypse, who remarks:

You humans are biological machines designed to create ever more intelligent tools. You have reached the pinnacle of your species. All your ancestors' lives, the rise and fall of your nations, every pink and squirming baby -- they have all led you here, to this moment, where you have fulfilled the destiny of humankind and created your successor. You have expired. You have accomplished what you were designed to do.


Chilling, right? Almost as chilling as Fassbender's one-liner, "Big things have small beginnings." Again . . . I don't think I'm stretching this too far. Besides, the original Scott film begins with the Nostromo answering a distress signal of unknown origin, which leads them to the Derelict, where they conclude that it was sent by the Space Jockey itself. I could see Scott ending the film with an android-alien abomination dying, perhaps at the hands of a facehugger or one of the main protagonists, sending one last cry for help across the stars, toward Earth and humanity -- who send the crew of the Nostromo and Ash, years later, on a suicide mission to bring home an unstoppable militarized alien . . .

ETA: I know that it’s maybe more logical on the surface that the Space Jockey is the intended pilot of the Derelict, but I don’t think so. That the film takes place on LV-223 instead of LV-426 suggests the Derelict may originate underground in LV-223 and later get commandeered by either a protagonist or David-in-Space-Jockey-form. Talk in the trailer implies that the sticky green goo invited humankind to LV-223, so I’m thinking the goo needed a biological host in which to rise again. David, unfeeling for humankind, would probably be more than willing to show them the way home — to Earth.

Anything else is either too obvious to mention or too nebulous to back up with anything resembling even the flimsiest of evidence. What y'all think? Is this movie gonna kick ass or what?
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Re: PROMETHEUS Speculation/Discussion (Potential Spoilers)

Postby Strycher » Wed Apr 25, 2012 4:23 am

Alex Kane wrote:While I don't think we will get to actually see any Giger aliens on-screen in Prometheus, I certainly think we'll see a facehugger or two, or at least the eggs themselves.


Over in the Daily Spoilers on io9 the other day, they quoted Scott as saying that he was interested in potentially making a sequel to Prometheus. For that reason he wanted to avoid having Prometheus ending exactly where Alien starts. I'd be fine if there were facehuggers, because that would add consistency between the movies, but I wouldn't be surprised if we don't see any. I'm half expecting for the protagonists to stumble upon one or many other weapons room/lockers and find other . . . things. And I tend to agree with your assessment that it's unlikely we'll see any fully-formed Xenomorphs.

the Space Jockey is . . . either Charlize Therone's character, who we see little of in the trailer, or David, the android played by Michael Fassbender.


This would make me so sad. My interest is piqued at the idea of getting information about where the Xenomorph come from--I'm really hoping the Jockey is a full-on alien and it has back-story and we get some of that. But now that you bring this up, it actually sounds more in line with the themes and tones of the Alien franchise. It's space horror--not space opera.

Talk in the trailer implies that the sticky green goo invited humankind to LV-223


I've sorta-kinda been trying to avoid spoilers, so I've only seen the trailer once. I remember the implication being that humans were invited to LV-233, but I don't remember anything that would specifically point to green goo over say, the Jockey.

I imagine Fassbender serving as the similar Ash character


Yes, definitely. It's been a while since I've watched Alien, but to me Ash came off as malfunctional. (That could just be the impression I got from Bishop in the second movie commenting on how the older models were unstable.) I expect that since David is an even earlier model that he is going to break down at some point in very much the same way Ash did.
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Re: PROMETHEUS Speculation/Discussion (Potential Spoilers)

Postby Alex Kane » Wed Apr 25, 2012 5:54 am

Aw, man. If you haven't seen Alien in a while (like I hadn't until last week), do yourself a favor and go rent the DVD or Blu-ray. Holy cow, it hasn't aged a day -- and there are so many things to make you giddy about Prometheus, not to mention fall in love all over again with the original film itself.

Yeah, Ash *totally* malfunctions. Like HAL-9000, he's torn between the law, ethics, programming, etc. and his direct instructions, which turn out to be pretty appalling. There are some great inflections in that performance as the android struggles with his programming and the tension of the crew. He may be the unappreciated star of the film, despite how phenomenal Weaver is throughout. Ash has a great closing line, too: "I can't lie to you about your chances, but . . . you have my sympathies."
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Re: PROMETHEUS Speculation/Discussion (Potential Spoilers)

Postby Strycher » Wed Apr 25, 2012 7:14 am

Alex Kane wrote:Aw, man. If you haven't seen Alien in a while (like I hadn't until last week), do yourself a favor and go rent the DVD or Blu-ray.


They're on my shelf . . . I guess I should dust them off. I expect there to be a marathon before Prometheus comes out.
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Re: PROMETHEUS Speculation/Discussion (Potential Spoilers)

Postby Bard Constantine » Sat Apr 28, 2012 4:30 pm

I'm actually more excited about Prometheus than The Dark Knight Rises. Every single shot of the trailer, every viral advertisement has me feeling like this will be the most completely satisfying movie for me since The Prestige -I came out of the theater with the feeling that I wanted to go right back in and watch it again.

I haven't dug into the lore as deeply as you have, but what I was wondering was if the ship that breaks apart in the trailer is the same one that they find in the original Alien. I'll have to dust off my copy and watch it again to see if I can find any clues. It seems as though the crew of the Prometheus won't survive the experience -sacrificing themselves to stop the Space Jockey race from shipping their virus/species/vicious pets to Earth and causing almost as much damage as the AvP movies.

On another note, I'd hate to see David snap and get all unstable, although that may be a foregone conclusion. He's already my favorite character in the film. I bet Microsoft has something to do with those programming errors... wotf23
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Re: PROMETHEUS Speculation/Discussion (Potential Spoilers)

Postby george nik. » Thu Jun 07, 2012 2:41 pm

Well, has anyone watched the movie yet? I just watched it tonight and I'm still not sure if I iked it very much. I certainly imagined I'd like it a lot more than I did. It had some great scenes but it failed to, you know, move me.
I'm not saying anything more in case people here haven't seen it yet.
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Re: PROMETHEUS Speculation/Discussion (Potential Spoilers)

Postby morshana » Thu Jun 07, 2012 2:47 pm

george nik. wrote:Well, has anyone watched the movie yet? I just watched it tonight and I'm still not sure if I iked it very much. I certainly imagined I'd like it a lot more than I did. It had some great scenes but it failed to, you know, move me.
I'm not saying anything more in case people here haven't seen it yet.


Haven't seen it and I don't do the horror thing very well... So you won't spoil anything for me. wotf007
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Re: PROMETHEUS Speculation/Discussion (Potential Spoilers)

Postby george nik. » Thu Jun 07, 2012 11:19 pm

It's space opera horror. Personally, if they skipped the horror and just kept the space opera, I'd have liked it much more.
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Re: PROMETHEUS Speculation/Discussion (Potential Spoilers)

Postby WriteToLive » Fri Jun 08, 2012 8:03 am

george nik. wrote:It's space opera horror. Personally, if they skipped the horror and just kept the space opera, I'd have liked it much more.


Agreed. He could have kept some of it, but I would have made it to the point where a lot of the gore and that happened off-screen. Sometimes, that's even creepier.
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Re: PROMETHEUS Speculation/Discussion (Potential Spoilers)

Postby katsincommand » Fri Jun 08, 2012 12:17 pm

Is it any more gory than Aliens?

That's probably as "horror" as I get... lol
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Re: PROMETHEUS Speculation/Discussion (Potential Spoilers)

Postby Alex Kane » Fri Jun 08, 2012 7:39 pm

katsincommand wrote:Is it any more gory than Aliens?

That's probably as "horror" as I get... lol

Not in terms of what's going on, but . . . let's just say that it's a lot more realistic.

You "feel" this one.

Oh, and by the way, I think it was maybe the best SF film I've ever seen. Ridley Scott reinvented a genre when he made Alien in '79, but with Prometheus he's perfected it. And Noomi Rapace is mesmerizing.
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Re: PROMETHEUS Speculation/Discussion (Potential Spoilers)

Postby ThomasKCarpenter » Sun Jun 10, 2012 5:59 am

Saw it yesterday. I'll give it four out of five stars. One of my biggest complaints is that they put too much of the movie into the trailer. I was hoping Mr. Scott was trying to fool us, but alas, the trailer showed us most of the movie's key scenes and gives you the outline of the plot. Which really isn't the movie's fault, but the marketing teams. Still, it was a great movie and I enjoyed it (except for the face-hugger dreams I had last night, yuck!)
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Re: PROMETHEUS Speculation/Discussion (Potential Spoilers)

Postby morshana » Sun Jun 10, 2012 7:23 am

Alex Kane wrote:
katsincommand wrote:Is it any more gory than Aliens?

That's probably as "horror" as I get... lol

Not in terms of what's going on, but . . . let's just say that it's a lot more realistic.

You "feel" this one.

Oh, and by the way, I think it was maybe the best SF film I've ever seen. Ridley Scott reinvented a genre when he made Alien in '79, but with Prometheus he's perfected it. And Noomi Rapace is mesmerizing.


My brother said Prometheus feels more sci-fi and less horror than the original Aliens. I think he's trying to talk me into seeing it... =)
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Re: PROMETHEUS Speculation/Discussion (Potential Spoilers)

Postby ThomasKCarpenter » Sun Jun 10, 2012 7:27 am

I would agree it's more sci-fi than horror, however, there are three or four scenes that are definitely horror. I would put the overall mix around 80/20. Maybe a similar movie could be Pitch Black in the level of that mix?
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Re: PROMETHEUS Speculation/Discussion (Potential Spoilers)

Postby morshana » Sun Jun 10, 2012 8:11 am

ThomasKCarpenter wrote:I would agree it's more sci-fi than horror, however, there are three or four scenes that are definitely horror. I would put the overall mix around 80/20. Maybe a similar movie could be Pitch Black in the level of that mix?


I think I'll have to stick to rental. I've seen all the Alien movies, and Pitch Black, but I just can't handle the gore any more. If someone could tell me "this scene will be gory", then I could just hide my eyes during those 4 or 5 scenes, but not knowing...I'd miss most of the movie. And my husband can't handle suspense like that (though he's fine with gore). We'll look forward to seeing it in the comfort of our own home, with the remote handy. =)
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Re: PROMETHEUS Speculation/Discussion (Potential Spoilers)

Postby Alex Kane » Sun Jun 10, 2012 8:23 am

There's only one truly "gory" part, and you'll know for sure when it's coming. It involves a medical procedure.
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Re: PROMETHEUS Speculation/Discussion (Potential Spoilers)

Postby Strycher » Sun Jun 10, 2012 9:57 am

Alex Kane wrote:There's only one truly "gory" part, and you'll know for sure when it's coming. It involves a medical procedure.


Jeezy Creezy that scene was intense! Yikes!

I liked it. I think a lot of people who saw Alien in theaters when it came out and have been waiting on Scott to do a follow up for 30 years are going to suffer a bit from Prequel Syndrome (where your decades long expectations makes it impossible for you to see the value of a new addition to the franchise regardless of the objective value of the addition).

Having said that, I've been an Alien(s) fan most of my life, and for me, this movie really delivers.

Noomi Rapace, Michael Fassbender, Charlize Theron, Guy Peirce--these are superior actors and in this movie they are all at their best.

I think this one is actually a little less scary than Alien was, because you go in with some experience in the universe--but Scott added a lot of new mystery that doesn't feel forced and is terrifying.
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Re: PROMETHEUS Speculation/Discussion (Potential Spoilers)

Postby Alex Kane » Sun Jun 10, 2012 10:10 am

Strycher wrote:Having said that, I've been an Alien(s) fan most of my life, and for me, this movie really delivers.

Noomi Rapace, Michael Fassbender, Charlize Theron, Guy Peirce--these are superior actors and in this movie they are all at their best.

I think this one is actually a little less scary than Alien was, because you go in with some experience in the universe--but Scott added a lot of new mystery that doesn't feel forced and is terrifying.

Yes, yes, and yes.

One quibble: Why did they have to get a 44-year-old actor to play a man in his nineties? That bugged me more than anything, even though he did a phenomenal job. My second complaint is that the epilogue doesn't add anything to the film at all, other than to squeeze in some crowd-pleasing prequel flay-vah, and the scene that preceded it was a much better ending.

Other than that, yeah, killer film. I think Scott delivered. It's worth noting that people hated Blade Runner upon its release, and that it was basically a box-office flop. Today, it's considered a brilliant classic of science fiction cinema.
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Re: PROMETHEUS Speculation/Discussion (Potential Spoilers)

Postby Strycher » Sun Jun 10, 2012 11:32 am

Alex Kane wrote:One quibble: Why did they have to get a 44-year-old actor to play a man in his nineties?


I don't know. But, I'm pretty sure that character was older than 90.

My second complaint is that the epilogue doesn't add anything to the film at all, other than to squeeze in some crowd-pleasing prequel flay-vah, and the scene that preceded it was a much better ending.


That epilogue actually pisses me off because it doesn't communicate information that we can use in any meaningful way. It's a puzzle without an answer. You're not supposed to do that! It's lousy story-telling, imo. Anything further will be spoilery, so I'll stop there. But yes, they could have just started where the story started and left off the epilogue entirely. But then, I have a dislike of epilogues so wotf017
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Re: PROMETHEUS Speculation/Discussion (Potential Spoilers)

Postby morshana » Sun Jun 10, 2012 3:56 pm

Alex Kane wrote:There's only one truly "gory" part, and you'll know for sure when it's coming. It involves a medical procedure.


Hm. Maybe I'll drill my brother on the gore and what to expect. Then maybe I could see it, but without my husband (since I doubt I could convince him that the movie isn't that suspenseful). haha

Thanks!
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Re: PROMETHEUS Speculation/Discussion (Potential Spoilers)

Postby Bard Constantine » Mon Jun 11, 2012 6:40 am

I'm still mulling it over. Saw it last night. I agree that the previews basically surmise the entire film. The only thing left was sifting out the murky storyline. I enjoyed Alien as a horror movie in space, and Aliens as an action movie in space. Prometheus leaned toward the horror angle, but never committed because it really wanted to be a thoughtful odyssey type of film. The result makes it a bit uneven. Did I enjoy it? Yes. Excellent directing and even better cast. Michael Fassbender stands out as superb as David. He stole the show in my opinion.
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Re: PROMETHEUS Speculation/Discussion (Potential Spoilers)

Postby Strycher » Mon Jun 11, 2012 8:37 am

Bard Constantine wrote:Michael Fassbender stands out as superb as David. He stole the show in my opinion.


Completely agree. He was so convincing I kept forgetting that he's an actor playing a robot rather than an actual robot actor. Amazing subtlety throughout.
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Re: PROMETHEUS Speculation/Discussion (Potential Spoilers)

Postby Martin L. Shoemaker » Mon Jun 11, 2012 11:37 am

OK, my nephew and his friends just asked me a simple question that probably has a complicated answer: is this film a prequel to "Alien"? Or an unofficial prequel? Or...?
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Re: PROMETHEUS Speculation/Discussion (Potential Spoilers)

Postby bobsandiego » Mon Jun 11, 2012 12:03 pm

My take on seeing the film yesterday:
Visually - stunning. The first film that I have regretted selecting the 2-D presentation.
Conceptually -daring. You can see a desires to deal with big ideas.
Execution - crap. The writing sucked, the script varied from boring to insulting. Can we get at least 1 screen character who does not run directryl away from an approaching threat but rather goes off the side, just freaking once, please?
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Re: PROMETHEUS Speculation/Discussion (Potential Spoilers)

Postby Alex Kane » Mon Jun 11, 2012 12:18 pm

Martin L. Shoemaker wrote:OK, my nephew and his friends just asked me a simple question that probably has a complicated answer: is this film a prequel to "Alien"? Or an unofficial prequel? Or...?

It is a standalone, self-contained film set in the same universe as the Alien films (but which didn't need to be), with a tacked-on, unnecessary epilogue that tries to force Prometheus into the Alien-prequel box, even though it doesn't belong there. Like, at all.

All in all, I'd say it's second only to the original Ridley Scott ALIEN. Better than Cameron's '86 sequel, I dare say. But of course my opinion is just that: an opinion.
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Re: PROMETHEUS Speculation/Discussion (Potential Spoilers)

Postby Strycher » Mon Jun 11, 2012 12:29 pm

Alex Kane wrote:
Martin L. Shoemaker wrote:OK, my nephew and his friends just asked me a simple question that probably has a complicated answer: is this film a prequel to "Alien"? Or an unofficial prequel? Or...?

It is a standalone, self-contained film set in the same universe as the Alien films (but which didn't need to be), with a tacked-on, unnecessary epilogue that tries to force Prometheus into the Alien-prequel box, even though it doesn't belong there. Like, at all.

All in all, I'd say it's second only to the original Ridley Scott ALIEN. Better than Cameron's '86 sequel, I dare say. But of course my opinion is just that: an opinion.


What Alex said.

And also: Yes, it's a prequel.
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Re: PROMETHEUS Speculation/Discussion (Potential Spoilers)

Postby bobsandiego » Mon Jun 11, 2012 2:22 pm

All in all, I'd say it's second only to the original Ridley Scott ALIEN. Better than Cameron's '86 sequel, I dare say. But of course my opinion is just that: an opinion.

Allow me to polietly disagree with this sentiment. While I understand there are many people unhappy with Cameron's Aliens I feel it is a far better story then Scott's Prometheus.
I wanted to scream the moment the biologist characters says, yeah he'd rather walk back to the ship that invesitgate the alien biology laying right there at his feet. There are too many instance of PV (Profession Victim) actions and incomprehensible objectives for this story to work for me, and frankly the writers have never had their appendix out, or they would have never had Shaw running the way she did.
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Re: PROMETHEUS Speculation/Discussion (Potential Spoilers)

Postby MJNL » Mon Jun 11, 2012 3:12 pm

Oh good, bob, guess I wasn't the only one. There were just waaaaay too many inconsistencies, in my opinion. And nonsensical back-story. And strangely unrelated sequences (er, we just burned her boyfriend for appearing quite normal, if sick--but we're going to completely ignore the sucker in the operation tank? Not to mention the fact that she just assaulted crewmates? And that her guts should be falling out? Uh...)

And yeah, I know the franchise is primarily horror, but you’d think they’d attempt to use some science/scientific behavior.

On the whole I did like it--all of the on screen action was quite nice. It's just when I got to thinking about it that I went, wait, that movie made no sense...

Or, actually, it makes a lot of sense, but only when I extrapolate using details that weren't even offered in the film.

But let me reiterate: I did like it. And I'm not a big horror-consumer, so anyone who normally shies away from that kind of thing should be fine. Definitely more on the alien-planet-action side.
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Re: PROMETHEUS Speculation/Discussion (Potential Spoilers)

Postby Alex Kane » Mon Jun 11, 2012 4:36 pm

Don't get me wrong, I like Cameron's Aliens a ton--in fact, it's probably the best film of his career, except for maybe Titanic. (Avatar and Terminator, entertaining as they are, are basically plagiarized cheesy-action popcorn fluff in an expensive, shiny package. I love The Abyss, too, but that film has waaaaay more problems than Prometheus.)

I just thought Prometheus was incredibly bold, suspenseful, and an audiovisual marvel. It also tried to be smart and original, which is more than I can say for *anything* Cameron's ever done, as much as I enjoy his films from a purely eye-candy perspective.

To put my thoughts in perspective, here's a comment I posted on Facebook recently, in response to John Shirley's assessment of the film, which is more or less the same as my own:

Part of me can't help but wonder whether we're over-dissecting this thing right at birth. I mean, the original and the '86 sequel are classics beyond criticism at this point . . . but if we really bothered to look, they've probably got just as many inconsistencies and science-goofs, or maybe more. Cameron's Aliens is just a mindless military SF flick with awesome special effects and almost unbearable suspense, and we know that, so we don't care that Ripley and Bishop get exposed to the vacuum of space without getting turned to pulp. With Prometheus, we're crucifying a film for being ambitious and playing with smart ideas.
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Re: PROMETHEUS Speculation/Discussion (Potential Spoilers)

Postby bobsandiego » Mon Jun 11, 2012 7:48 pm

Don't get me wrong, I like Cameron's Aliens a ton--in fact, it's probably the best film of his career, except for maybe Titanic. (Avatar and Terminator, entertaining as they are, are basically plagiarized cheesy-action popcorn fluff in an expensive, shiny package.
I thinks Cameron's best films at The Terminator (the original not the big shiny expensive one that was the just the first film done sillier) and True Lies. Titanic, well it was visually impressive and he succeeded at doing what no other filmmaker had done, keeping the POV on the ship right up until the fantail goes under, but god that dialog! Full of Wisconsin cheese product. Avatar? again visually fantastic, the man knows how to put shit on screen, but the story was predictable and the characters very stock.
Scott is very much the same sort of thing. He's a master visually, but he has no clue what makes a good script.
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