The Prometheus backlash begins here (handy comments system available to leave your hate mail) . . .

There is no other film which has Internet geeks as hyper right now as Prometheus, the upcoming Alien prequel directed by Ridley Scott. (Nope, not even Dark Knight Rises or The Avengers.)

This super-secretive project has been the source of nonstop online speculation for months now and Internet fan speculation is sure to reach a crescendo in the coming few months left until its release date on June 8th.

Yet, we’re not all that excited about the movie and here’s why:

1.) It’s a prequel

Scott has stated that Prometheus’ links to the first Alien movie will become apparent in the “final seven minutes.” From the trailers and publicity material released thus far it is clear that Prometheus is going to be about the so-called “space jockeys” – the giant dead space alien tantalizingly glimpsed at the beginning of the 1979 movie. (James Cameron called it “the big dental patient” by the way – see pic above.)

The space jockeys have always been a source of constant fan speculation and they’re quite excited that director Scott will finally be supplying some answers.

But we have to wonder whether some questions shouldn’t stay unanswered – after all, do we really want to know how a magician performs his tricks?

While the prospect of original movie director Ridley Scott returning to the Alien universe he helped create is making many fans foam at the mouth, we’re thinking back to a similar geek frenzy that ended in tears. Yup, we’re talking about the Star Wars prequels.

Not that we’re saying that Prometheus is going to be as lousy as Phantom Menace – heavens no! No “meesa people gonna die” here, but as with all prequels there is a feeling of “been there, done that.” We know the studio bigwigs wouldn’t finance Scott’s planned Brave New World and Forever War movie projects, but we really wish they had. Scott has always complained about the Alien vs. Predator movies “diluting” the Alien brand, but by solving one of Alien’s most enduring mysteries we fear that he might be doing the same here.

Do we really need the mystery of the space jockey solved? Do we need to know how Anakin Skywalker became Darth Vader? Or what happened to the Norwegian camp in The Thing? We don’t think so . . .

2.) Supermodel shoot in space

One of the reasons why we love the original Alien movie so much is because the crew of the Nostromo looked like ordinary working folks. The crew of the Prometheus all look like supermodels.

Sure, it was the 1970s. Look at the beach scenes in the first Jaws movie: they look like the type of people who you actually get to see on public beaches. If they were to remake Jaws today they’d get extras from a model agency! In contrast the crew of the Nostromo looks just like the sort of working stiffs you’d expect to work on a commercial towing spaceship.

Maybe we’re just kinda tired of good-looking people in movies here and feel oppressed by the figures of beauty . . .

3.) CGI

Scott has apparently gone to great lengths to build some physical sets (particularly the one featuring that giant head statue seen in the movie posters) but some scenes in the trailer especially of the alien planet landscape look like something about of a videogame.

4.) Those daft goldfish bowl spacesuits

They really look crap. Compare them to the clunky spacesuit designs by John Mollo in the first movie (see above). They look as if they might actually work!

Already Prometheus is looking more technologically advanced than the movie it is supposed to be a prequel to – a problem with the Star Wars prequels too.

5.) It’s directed by Ridley Scott

At 74, picking on Ridley Scott feels like picking on a pensioner at a bus stop or something.

However, here we go:

Critical opinion on Ridley Scott sure has changed. Today he is lauded as one of the greatest film directors ever and sure, he has an impressive list of movies under his belt as director: Alien, Blade Runner, Thelma & Louise, Gladiator, Black Hawk Down . . .

But back in the day Scott – with his background in television advertising – was seen by many critics as what is wrong with Hollywood blockbusters: all pretty visuals with nothing going on underneath.

And let’s be honest here, he has always had a “hit one, miss one” oeuvre. Don’t believe me? Then look at all the movies he has made in the past decade or so: Robin Hood, Body of Lies, American Gangster, A Good Year, Kingdom of Heaven and Matchstick Men. I mean, come on! How many of these movies do you even remember having seen?

Then we don’t even want to mention Hannibal or G.I. Jane here . . .
 
 
 

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Category: Features, Movies

About the Author

James has been running The Sci-Fi Movie Page since Before the Beginning of Time Itself (TM), i.e. since the site's inception in 1997. In addition to sci-fi James also likes 1970s motorbikes and chili dogs although he doesn't own the former and no longer eats the latter. He currently resides in Kiev, Ukraine for reasons best left unexplained.

  • Bolithio

    The issue with new movies seems to be a dearth of creativity and originality. We all know this is a big issue for sci-fi, and perhaps all art at this point. But how can you create anything without some form of plagiarism or influence? Still, if Promethous isn’t the best sci-fi movie of 2012, Ive yet to see anything that seems to better it. The second trailer, is the best trailer Ive watched in a long time. Its about how much you want to “nerd-out” into the story. I find the modern texture very aesthetically appealing. As much as the movies I grew up watching captivated me, wouldn’t we be more disappointed if they filmed the movie using the same cheesy stunts and models as the 70s Alien? I want to see the newest techniques in a film. I concur about the ‘good looking factor’ of actors, but lets give them some credit for not casting Will Smith et al.

    Frankly, I never gave that much thought into the ‘Space Jockey’, so Im not expecting some loss of awe from the original film.  I doubt most movie goers will be poo-pooing that either. It a good idea to me because it adds complexity to the universe. The Alien was simply a monster where as the ‘Jockey’ is obviously intelligent.

    I call your bluff. I suspect you are indeed excited about this, but found the time to attack the hype. Thats cool. You guys get to see the movie before any of us, and there is no doubt you will at the first opportunity you have, right?! lol

  • guest

    So, you don’t like it because it’s related to other movies, it has some good looking actors, it uses modern special effects, they have big helmets and the director is getting old?

    Wow, I’m sure rethinking whether I should see this movie! I hate it when old people direct films that reference other films and use special effects and I hate big helmets!

  • TERRAFORMER

    Alien’s old dirty look vs prometheus modern look = the nostromo was an outdated ship dragging a massive towering rig. their space suits are pressure suits not built to explore an alien planet. The prometheus is a very costly and expensive modern ship built to explore an alien planet. thier suits are throwbacks to the old scifi flicks and have been built specifically to explore an alien planet. I see people today driving 30 year old cars and the military using 40 year old vechicles.

    CGI = Only used for exterior space shots and some scenes deemed impossible to shoot practicaly.

    RIDLEY SCOTT = Sure he’s had some misses but thats because he takes risks and tries every single genre out there. Kingdom of heaven directors cut is a modern classic. I’d rather watch his films over the cliched overrated James cameron anyday. Alien and blade runner are considered 2 of the top ten greatest scifi films ever made, the massively overlooked Conquest of paradise is AMAZING and gladiator revived the swords & scandel genre. He’s the most influencal filmaker alive today and he loves his gore, shock factor and pacing. put those elements with scifi and that makes him the best scifi director alive.

    this is the most anticipated scifi film of the 21st century. even Roger Ebert is craving to see this film.

  • LOL

    I only found this site cause i was looking up prometheus. This artical or the poster (who’s obviously an idiot when it comes to films) is complete BS. Hope they/he/she knows REAL PROFESIONAL critics and REAL blogs and online websites think the opposite

  • TERRAFORMER

    rant over

  • Rogue

    Today I will rise around 10.30, kick back to some vinyl records (digital is so passé), and stare wistfully out of the window pretending not to notice passers by as I sip my decaff frappaccino for half an hour. Finally ready to face the day, I will write some attention seeking “controversial” (I so love doing the “” gesture with my fingers don’t you?) article citing various troll gripes I C&P’ed from IMDB. My work is done.

  • Double R

    I’ve been a slowly becoming a non fan of this site.  After this retard review of this upcoming movie….well time to delete my bookmark…Dude you suck….Really your the scifimovepage and your going to bash Scott???

  • Anonymous

    A lot of negative reaction as expected, but I think the article boils down to three points:

    a.) Prometheus simply won’t be as groundbreaking and influential as Alien was back in 1979. Let’s face up to it: Alien spawned a lot (and we mean a lot!) of imitators throughout the years. 

    b.) Fan expectations might be a bit too high on Prometheus like it was with Indiana Jones & the Crystal Skull and The Phantom Menace. 

    But we are bluffing as one poster called it: we think Prometheus will be a pretty kick ass flick – as long as you don’t expect it to have the same impact as the original movie had back in 1979. Back then there wasn’t quite anything like Alien, today we have had lots of sequels and imitators.

    (Heck, I even thought the Thing prequel wasn’t as bad as some people said. It just wasn’t a patch on the Carpenter movie.)

    c.) We’d rather like Ridley Scott to tackle Joe Haldeman’s Forever War and Brave New World rather than revisit Alien and Blade Runner. I think he will come up with something more, well, groundbreaking if he did Forever War.

  • Nautolan Jedi

    Scifimoviepage,
     
    you dont have to be so cynical all the time…
    Though, I know that we, as sci-fi movie fans have been let down by film makers very often, like with the aforementioned Star Wars prequels (Attack of the clones was my favourite, the other two left a lot to be desired) and The Matrix sequels.

    Ridley Scott may prove to be the exception to the rule that poorly crafted sci-fi sequels have become.

    However, only time will tell…and if im wrong and your cynicism proves to be correct, I will be awaiting your movie review, loaded with sarcasm as usual.

  • Nautolan Jedi

    He is like the comic book store guy in The Simpsons, he bashes everything and everyone in the science fiction universe…so, my advice is to not take his negative opinion so personally.  Ridley Scott is a good director, but he is not above critical speculation.

  • Anonymous

    To be honest, I’m actually betting that Prometheus will be more Rise of the Planet of the Apes (which I genuinely liked) than Phantom Menace.

    All will be fine unless Scott has Naomi Rapace escape a nuclear explosion at the end by hiding in a fridge . . . in which I case I can say, “I told you so.”

  • Bolithio

    Its just hes in his 70′s. Not to be “ageist”, but how much innovation can we expect from someone that age? And I dont think the hype with this movie is because people are expecting anything revolutionary. Its because we all saw Alien and love the world. And its not George Lucas.

  • Pau Rel

    What do they mean “How many of these movies do you even remember having seen?” ; Robin Hood, Body of Lies, American Gangster, A Good Year, Kingdom of Heaven and Matchstick Men, Hannible, G.I. Jane. I’ve seen all but one of those and they were all good. If the criticism is that they weren’t epic masterpiece that critic should take another look at most of the pap that comes out of hollywood. I don’t think Prometheus will work because, as a rule, I don’t like prequels and I can’t imaging an alien movie without Ripley. That being said this review is complete dren.

  • Leroy

    Even though I am looking forward to this film, I too have some reservations about it.  It would have been fine if the “Alien DNA” Mr. Scott keeps talking about weren’t in the movie.  I’d perfer a totally original concept (not saying that this story dosen’t sound interesting) only because there are way too many prequels and sequels out there.  From the trailers it looks to be well made so I don’t have the concern of it being junk like the Star Wars prequels (even the Star Trek reboot was likable, just wish it had been a totally original film in the Star Trek universe instead of what it turned out to be).  Guess I just have to wait until June to see it.

  • len61

    Alien is only a branch, of a seed !

  • http://twitter.com/aldoojeda Aldo Ojeda Campos

    I don’t know, I agree with you, but I’ll wait to see the movie to make any comment.

  • merevisionaire

    Hey writer, I agree with you on most things, and your probaly a person that knows about movies. But hey, American ganster and Matchstick men are far far from being bad or even average movies, leave alone unforgettable. American gangster was the only movie, that attempted to build a world like Godfather did in the seventies, and even though its not near as good, it deserves much more recognition as you give it. And Matchstick men, come on, this is one of Nicolas Cage’s his bests movies, because he plays his role in a way he never plays a role. That being said, I wonder how you rate movies.  

  • Jpvg1981

    American Gangster & Kingdom of Heaven is two of the finest non-scifi movies in the last decade. I honestly don’t get your drift, it sounds to me that you hate the man/movieconcept more then his movies and it’s reflected in your article.

  • Doc

    Name one director that hasn’t made at least several “crappy” movies?  Of course, this movie could bomb, but I’m glad they’re still trying to make something fans want to see.  I haven’t been excited about any movies recently – over a year or more, because they keep recycling garbage.  While this may be a “prequel”, its not recycled.  Only time will tell if it turns out great or less so.  Either way, I’ll be there!

  • shothoth

    Do you mean Noomi Rapace?

    Before bashing, know your shit.

  • http://twitter.com/MarkyMarkSurrey MarkyMarkSurrey

    Your story above had a paragraph that summed up why i have
    difficulty watching new sci-fi TV and films “One of the reasons why we
    love the original Alien movie so
    much is because the crew of the Nostromo looked like ordinary working folks.
    The crew of the Prometheus all look like
    supermodels.” I agree with you totally. The down to earth gritty style is what
    makes a good film believable, not some glossy lipped politically correct
    leading MAN or woman it’s the reality of the characters looks and how it’s portrayed.
    Ripley for instance, not a drop of makeup in sight, baggy old jump suit, gun in
    one hand ginger puss in the other and she was the best thing in the Alien
    movies, because people could relate to her. . Well done you’ve put into words
    what I’ve been thinking for the past few years.

  • Anonymous

    Its a film, its surposed to put you in a place you’ve never seen or been to, if the back ground is better than the original, its because we have moved on. Sci Fi is about the different thing our minds can imagine, all a director can do is to try and transport us to that time and place, we as the audiance either enjoy the film or you don’t. Its very dificult now to try and put something on film  that we have never seen before, and to make a story blend in to the original film with out being to distracting from the story, i for one will go hoping its a great film and that i come away say ’now that was great’ as we did with countless films that have gone before…….KEEP THE FAITH.   

  • http://twitter.com/trangthetroll Roger Mihalko

    How far ahead/behind is this prequel has been my question. If the movie is about the origin of the Aliens, and they decimate another complete culture and the giant space jockeys just happen along and pick them up and then get decimated and crash land on the planet where Ripleys crew makes the discovery, that would be cool.

    I will go out on a limb and say anything he does here will be better than the abortions that were alien vs predator and all the derivative bull crap.

    As for models in space, I thought ripley was hot before alien, during alien, and remains hot to this day:) so if you want to put the kardashians into space, go for it, just make sure they don’t talk and just stand around in skimpy outfits!! I no im a sexist pig, but come on scifi is dominated by dudes, eye candy is helpful!!! 

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Richard-Blackmore/100003287491082 Richard Blackmore

    sorry, the preview looks like crap. He could have made a really interesting movie, instead its crap horror sci-fi (and sorry, this looks crap horror sci-fi). Why redo what he has done before?

  • Jan W

    So, we all want Ridley to knock our socks off, and probably he will.  Of course he’ll be hard pressed to come up with a story as original as Alien or Blade Runner, and of course the movie will in no way break ground like those two did.  So…. You’re suggesting Ridley hangs it up simply because, in this day and age, originality is a little harder to come by? I say Go Ridley.  From the trailers alone I can see Im gonna have to buy two copies just in case.

  • Sidewinder

    I hear you man. But look, doesn’t it feel a little unnecessary to reboot the Alien franchise, because it’s perfect the way it is (well, at least the first and second one, but I like all four in different ways, you know…)? Anyway, I feel it’s like adding something to a perfect painting or writing an extra long intro to an already awesome song. I probably gonna like it a lot when I see it, but mostly due to Hollywood’s constant efforts to replace real storytellning with CGI (and supermodels, as suggested above). So many blockbusters could have been so much better with real storytelling and better directing and/or producing (e.g. the Star Wars-prequels or Shyamalan’s trainwreck The Last Airbender…maximum disappointment to say the least). I fear the worst possible scenario for Michael Bay’s TMNT, or is it TMAT (A for Alien)…childhood ruined right there man.

    And another thing; I totally agree with you that Alien, Blade Runner (two of my top ten), and Kingdom of Heaven are awesome movies (also Hannibal I might add), but please stop badmouthing Cameron. His genius matches Scott’s in my opinion. OK, Avatar wasn’t original or anything (Smurfs in Space, or whatever), but you gonna admit Prometheus looks kind of like Avatar in some ways from what we have seen from some trailers and clips. I guess these geniuses doesn’t know when to stop.

    But then again, if this reboot is as good as X-Men: First Class (best reboot/prequel so far I would say, and way better than Avengers for instance), I would be wrong about many of my thoughts here, but I doubt it.

  • Jan W

    He probably examines his morning stool.  If its solid, you get a good review.. it rarely is, though.

  • Jan W

    Yeah!!! Lets kill it before it opens!!!  I just love all these wonderfully smart people, who seem to everything there is to know about a movie, from watching a 2:30 trailer. 

  • Giantstomp2007

    You are stupid. Bad reasons and bad logic not to like. Must be a relative of Roger Ebert.

  • Gaz

    Get back to your hand-shandy man.

  • Brunonkin

    Oh no! I don’t like old directors and movies that relate to other movies! I haven’t seen it but I still don’t like it! Down with the Hobbit too!

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Tom-Kwiatkowski/1247446469 Tom Kwiatkowski

    You are being ageist.  What else do you call someone making the coment:  “…but how much innovation can we expect from someone that age.”  Any other bigotries that you express so crudely?

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Tom-Kwiatkowski/1247446469 Tom Kwiatkowski

    No, no… not the Kardashians!

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Tom-Kwiatkowski/1247446469 Tom Kwiatkowski

    On this particular point, I can agree.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Tom-Kwiatkowski/1247446469 Tom Kwiatkowski

    Based on your ratings of various sci-fi movies that I am already familiar with from having actually seen the totality of the creative effort (the entire movie and not just the trailer) I am really confused as to where you set the bar for a good movie from a bad movie.  Despite your negative comments relating ability to Ridley Scott’s age, I have to wonder whether you yourself are a cantankerous curmdugeon, i.e. “old fart.”

  • http://www.facebook.com/Chocklit Jacqui Graham

    Brave New World!  Brave New World! Brave New World!

  • MENTD

    You are an opinionated, uneducated idiot. And Kingdom of Heaven Director’s Cut is a masterpiece.

  • Josh kibbey

    Ok, Robin Hood was a little unnecessary, to me, but I loved Body of Lies, American Gangster, (and especially) Kingdom of Heaven and Matchstick Men. He takes risks and gets amazing and nuanced performances out of his actors.

  • Tony

    Most reviews are very positive.  I saw it yesterday and LOVED IT!  I read this review and kept rolling my eyes.  Some folks just get off on being cynical.  Ebert’s review matches my own.  My other fave reviewer, Peter Travers of Rolling Stone enjoyed it as well:  
    http://rogerebert.suntimes.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=%2F20120606%2FREVIEWS%2F120609989

  • Ms.

    I just watched it and I loved it – CGI, supermodels, sleekness and all. It’s 2012, not 1979 afterall. Breathtaking, brainy and ballsy! Most Directors wouldn’t dare make a movie about this controversial subject. Kudos to Ridley Scott!!

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