Since its approximate release date was announced, the film that 2012 promised that I was far and away most excited about was no prizes for guessing The Dark Knight Rises. I know Im not alone there. However, after 20th Century Fox unveiled extended footage from Ridley Scotts new Alien prequel (this is now confirmed without question) this morning to a lucky few, I can now confirm that the film I am most eagerly anticipating this summer is Prometheus! Fox treated us to what I believe to be the opening ten minutes of the film (perhaps condensed somewhat). It began in the lush Scottish Highlands (which looked amazing in 3D) in 2089, where scientist Elizabeth Shaw (Noomi Rapace) discovers, deep within a cave, ancient hieroglyphics that show a race of people worshipping a giant man, who is pointing at a constellation of stars. Dating back over 3000 years it bears close comparison with other cravings from Egypt, South America and all over the globe. Shaw believes this is an invitation for them to go and seek out this ancient being who may hold the answers to why we are here and where we came from. Flash forward 4 years and were in space, millions of light years away from Earth and aboard the ship Prometheus, a special expedition funded by Guy Pearces Weyland corporation to find the answers to the big questions about our existence. Michael Fassbender plays David, the genetically engineered android, with charm, wit and humour. Hes like a cross between a British Butler, with the look of Bishop and the mannerisms of Ash. He goes to wake Captain Meredith Vickers (Theron) from her suspended hibernation, but shes already up and on push-up 995 of 1000 by the looks of the sweat that is dripping off her svelte, scantily clad body. Shes the cold, distant, detached suit; her job is to make sure everyone else does their jobs as Charlize herself put it in the Q and A that followed. On board are our crew, and in a scene reminiscent of Scotts original close encounter film Alien they awake from hibernation. Many are seasoned space travellers so, apart from being groggy, come out of it fine and dandy. But for Shaw, she comes out of her sleep in a cold sweat and vomits her guts up. One of the great features of Scotts original master piece was the humanity he gave to the crew. In a time when space films were a dime a dozen he gave them a sense of reality the crew came out of their sleep and had breakfast, played cards. Here he does the same with Shaw reaction to the deep sleep and Idris Elbas character decorating a Christmas tree because he learns its December when they awake. The next scene sees Vickers giving her crew a wake-up speech before allowing the holograph footage of Guy Pearces character Peter Weyland explaining their mission. Looking over 200 years old, Weyland is the obsessive billionaire who has funded the mission as he shares the same desires as Shaw. He is also the creator of David, who he has bestowed his trust in to aid the crew. Though the sublety displayed on Davids face when Weyland says David possesses everything he always wanted in a son except the capability to have a soul is very intriguing. This is followed Shaw presenting her findings and the reason for their mission to the crew, who are all less than impressed to be going on a wild goose chase. Vickers, more than anyone seems to harbour this resentment. And as a suit, going by Alien movies mythology, she is not to be trusted. And with that were into a montage of footage, most of which can be seen in the most recent trailer: Prometheus landing on the planet, the space ship from Alien, the Space Jockey, then all Hell breaking loose backed by that haunting score that pounds and pounds and then hits a sustained, high-pitch scream! No word on the certificate yet, although Sir Ridley (FYI he doesnt like being addressed as Sir) was quite vocal about the ongoing debate about whether films should be edited to meet lower certificates, saying that he would welcome a 12A as it would allow the film to make more money. Recognising film as a business he was pragmatic that when films make money everyone is happy and when they bomb people are devastated. That said, the action in the trailer seems to suggest a higher rating, although who knows with the way the BBFC have been working of late. I left feeling a mixture of three emotions. Firstly excited. Visually it looks amazing, with the 3D employed beautifully. Anyone who had doubts about the Red standing up against 35 mm were way off the mark as Scott wholeheartedly endorses it as the best camera to make film on after this outing. The sets look sublime, characters seem to be really fleshed out, which Im not doubt is down to the stellar cast that are involved, and the action seems set to rival Camerons Aliens. Secondly relieved to know that it doesnt appear to be another stinker from Scott whose recent filmography is littered with half baked, poorly scripted box office flops. But above all, I felt teased. I now have to wait until the 1st of June to see the rest of the movie, which I now await with bated breath.
Frustratingly argumentative writer, eater, reader and fanatical about film ‘n’ food and all things fundamentally flawed. I have been a member of the WhatCulture family since it was known as Obsessed with Film way back in the bygone year of 2010. I review films, festivals, launch events, award ceremonies and conduct interviews with members of the ‘biz’. Follow me @FilmnFoodFan
In 2011 I launched the restaurant and food criticism section. I now review restaurants alongside film and the greatest rarity – the food ‘n’ film crossover. Let your imaginations run wild as you mull on what that might look like!