Review: Prometheus / Cert: 15 / Director: Ridley Scott / Screenplay: Jon Spaihts, Damon Lindelof / Starring: Noomi Rapace, Michael Fassbender, Charlize Theron, Idris Elba, Guy Pearce, Logan Marshall-Green, Sean Harris, Rafe Spall / Release Date: Out Now
Alien fans wanted the origins of the Space Jockey and the Xenomorphs, the characters in Ridley Scott’s Prometheus wanted the origin of life and the secret of immortality. Except Captain Janek, who just wanted a paycheck. Of course, priorities change.
The planet they land on in search of this maintains the dark, nightmarish H.R. Giger inspired world we’ve become used to. Unfortunately Prometheus lacks the claustrophobia, tension and suspense that made Alien a success, and the all-out action, quotable lines and uneasy laughs of Aliens are missing too. There are occasional throwbacks, i.e. the ‘something’s getting close’ beeping from Aliens, but there is rarely a satisfying pay-off. There is one iconic scene involving a bit of impromptu surgery, and a visually stunning scene of pixilated Space Jockeys running down a tunnel, but the movie suffers from the ‘best bits were in the trailer’ syndrome. Religious and philosophical debate seem to drive the narrative instead, which works very well with Fassbender’s android David (who steals the show), but ultimately disappoints as a whole.
This DVD/Blu-ray release carries the tagline ‘questions will be answered’. The main questions Alien fans have been asking for the last 33 years were already answered, but only at the expense of more questions being created. This has prompted talk of a sequel, although whether this was actually intended or not is open to speculation. Fox want one, Scott has more or less confirmed it will happen but not necessarily with him, and history looks set to repeat itself again.
The major disappointment with the home video release itself is that it is not the rumoured Director’s Cut. There are 34 minutes of deleted footage, but these are not integrated into the film and have to be watched separately as part of the extras. The most notable of these are an extended beginning, and an ever-so-slightly ‘different’ ending. There are other bits, such as the video shorts of David and Peter Weyland’s TED conference that were released as part of the film’s viral marketing campaign, all accessible via a spaceship computer style interface. Even worse, those without Blu-ray will be further disappointed as there are only 10 minutes of extra footage and nothing else on the normal DVD release.
Sadly, like the film itself, this release just doesn’t live up to its own hype.
Extras: Alternate Scenes / Featurettes / Viral Videos (all Blu-ray only) / Deleted Scenes