Saturday, 9 June 2012

Prometheus: A Visual Grandeur

Year 1979, a director simply altered the way people used to look at sci-fi cinema by concocting Alien, a cinematic masterpiece that stood the test of time. Ridley Scott created an atmosphere so bleak and horror so unknown that it haunted people for years to come. At 74 years of age, after thirty long years, Ridley Scott has revisited the future and has come up with the much hyped visual grandeur ‘Prometheus’.

When a team of explorers come across a star map encrypted on fossils that lead to the origins of mankind and delve upon deep questions dealing with life and God, they board ‘Prometheus’, a spacecraft, to a distant moon LV-223 to fathom our existence. Never did they knew, that a mere scientific exploration would turn up into a battle of survival of the crew and endangering the entire human race on the brink of extinction.

Right from the moment the vulnerable crew sets foot on the planet, the atmosphere of dread clouds them. It is the master craft of Ridley Scott, who has an expertise in creating tension that elevates this movie from regular sci-fi clich├ęd stuff. The creepy cave scenes and the glimpse of the metal alien (Yeah, it makes a brief appearance!) have the potential to crawl under your skin and scare the daylights out of you.

 It has often been noticed that big screen ambitions, wind up in forgettable debacles. But, Prometheus rises from the gravity of profoundness and never looks back. The slick and neatly cut gadgets brings an air of awe to the proceedings. The spectacular soundtrack delivers the sense of meaning this movie was looking for.  Stunning CGI and visually dazzling celestial backdrop elevates the happening and the mystery of unknown keeps you on the tip of your seats.

Wait a second, what was the fuss about profoundness, when you end up giving no answers at all? Prometheus soars with a brilliant start, a decent middle and ends up in a lousy fashion. Only if the writer had come up with a finer script that had been thought through till the end, this surreal journey would have been an epic in all measures.

When a sequel/prequel is considered, the comparisons with the original are inevitable. As an individual cinema, Prometheus hovers to the heights of being a sumptuous 3D affair having state of art sequences and reaching depths of visual accomplishments. But, as a companion piece to critically acclaimed Alien, it falters on some level. It was the horror of the unknown that ignited fear in the roots of our stomach in Alien. While here, Ridley Scott and the tittering screenplay assures us that the horror is long gone, and it is the sense of wonderment that sweeps the canvas of the celestial body.

The flaws of the movie are redeemed by a stellar cast. Michael Fassbender as the emotionless android is a scene stealer. He captures the scene and grips it hard with his terrific screen presence only to let go to Noomey Rapace who outshone her role with a testament to endurance and humanity. Guy Pearce (Wait! Was he even there?) presence was unnecessary and Charlize Theron did justice with the part she was entrusted with.

Prometheus might not be a cinematic achievement which it tries too hard to be, but it bestows enough unadulterated sci-fi goods to the genre lovers to keep them intoxicated. With drops of intelligence spilled in, this is a pure summer entertainer everybody rooted for.

Rating: 3.5 / 5

(first published in Udaipur Times)

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