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While Prometheus won't open stateside until June 8, today was the opening day for the movie in France and several Scandinavian countries. Thanks to that technical invention that's called the internet, the first people to watch Prometheus were writing up their reviews and publishing them on several fansites. Shortly thereafter followed the trade magazines like Variety and The Hollywood Reporter with their own views on the sci-fi film.
So what are people thinking of Prometheus? If you look at the professional critics, they are finding things to both commend and to criticize.
- "Elaborately conceived from a visual standpoint, Ridley Scott's sci-fier remains earthbound in narrative terms." -- Variety
- "A visually stunning return to science fiction by Ridley Scott caters too much to audience expectations when more imaginative boldness would have taken it further." -- The Hollywood Reporter
- " It might not pack the unbearable menace or blazing horror of the saga’s first two movies, but it utterly eclipses the last two." -- Total Film
- "It lacks the central killer punch of Alien: it doesn't have its satirical brilliance and its tough, rationalist attack on human agency and guilt." -- The Guardian
- "There are fresh, audacious moments of body horror, coupled with consistently breathtaking visuals and a streak of wry, knowing humor. But there's no getting away from the total lack of any cumulative sense of dread, nor from the essential emptiness at the film's core." -- Digital Spy
What do these early reviews and the fan buzz that I've read so far tell me? That Prometheus isn't cut from the same cloth as the original Alien in terms of primal originality. Lacking in the reviews is any mention of the creatures that you see in Prometheus (and there are several alien designs in the film). Even though he's had 30+ years to prepare for it, Ridley Scott had a hard act to follow in coming up with something as freshly terrifying as H.R. Giger's design for the original Alien creature.
One other aspect that I find disappointing is that Prometheus sets up several new mysteries but doesn't answer the central one that its crafted from: what was the story behind the crashed alien ship and the fossilized Space Jockey that we see in the first Alien? It seems strange for the Space Jockey alien race to be used in Prometheus but for that big question to not be finally realized, especially after all of these years of Scott telling us how much he would like to answer that question.
Will these early indications of Prometheus influence your decision to skip or see the movie?