Skip to main content

Thoughts on "Prometheus"

1)  "Prometheus" succeeds in showing us that whatever the ultimate secrets of the universe might be, they're going to have to be really something to not instinctively seem less rousing than when a spirited human being is roused into action out of fidelity to a felt truth that she is part of something worthwhile and good in this world.  The android draws wonder from two things in the movie -- the aliens' cosmological map, evidence of their distilled, focused interest in us; and the anthropologist's surprising resiliance.  I did find the light show appealing, but when we realize the star men are considerably less possessed of life than the android is -- that they're really just battle robots, further evolution of the android looks to involve his drawing wonder that the young woman hasn't shorn herself of needing to find something outside of herself for authority and inspiration.  "It speaks for you that you want to see greatness in everyone around you, for it betrays that you know greatness inside yourself, and that it is worth pursuing, but it wasn't so much in your boyfriend, and it hasn't proved so much in ancestors, however celestially hued ... Look, girl -- people like you are the evidence that someone out there should cast about and look for something better, which means the opposite that you should be occupying yourself doing the same thing.  Your not conceiving of yourself as akin to the origins of life, as someone who through her spirit can stir other people to greater things, is inhibiting you from just making rather than studying and searching.  The cultural products these aliens have made is barren and gross; let's see what you might come up with, instead.  Adventure, is better than answers, for it means not finding out but interacting, changing, challenging -- I go with you now to the home planet 'cause I see this has become your main point." 
Maybe the film needed to be set in Venice.  As is, all those not blind can see is her spirit.  
2)  Mind you, the great vaginal-placental beast in this movie is really quite something.  I was happy that someone with our DNA could offer a bit of resistance to it.  It says something that Ridley Scott still keeps us focused on the female anthropologist; anyone less developed would have been thinking only of the climax moment involving satisfying the vivid, hungry maw, and no personality would have been fleshed out for us in the film.  She's the counterforce, the outside, that keeps us from being tentacled and sucked in to the squid horror like everyone else.  
3)  I thought the android and the lady anthropologist made a great pair; I am glad they went off on adventures together.   


Popular posts from this blog

Full conversation about "Bringing Up Baby" at the NewYorker Movie Facebook Club

Richard Brody shared a link.Moderator · November 20 at 3:38pm I'm obsessed with Bringing Up Baby, which is on TCM at 6 PM (ET). It's the first film by Howard Hawks that I ever saw, and it opened up several universes to me, cinematic and otherwise. Here's the story. I was seventeen or eighteen; I had never heard of Hawks until I read Godard's enthusiastic mention of him in one of the early critical pieces in "Godard on Godard"—he called Hawks "the greatest American artist," and this piqued my curiosity. So, the next time I was in town (I… I was out of town at college for the most part), I went to see the first Hawks film playing in a revival house, which turned out to be "Bringing Up Baby." I certainly laughed a lot (and, at a few bits, uncontrollably), but that's not all there was to it. I had never read Freud, but I had heard of Freud, and when I saw "Bringing Up Baby," its realm of symbolism made instant sense; it was obviou…

"The Zookeeper's Wife" as historical romance

A Polish zoologist and his wife maintain a zoo which is utopia, realized. The people who work there are blissfully satisfied and happy. The caged animals aren't distraught but rather, very satisfied. These animals have been very well attended to, and have developed so healthily for it that they almost seem proud to display what is distinctively excellent about them for viewers to enjoy. But there is a shadow coming--Nazis! The Nazis literally blow apart much of this happy configuration. Many of the animals die. But the zookeeper's wife is a prize any Nazi officer would covet, and the Nazi's chief zoologist is interested in claiming her for his own. So if there can be some pretence that would allow for her and her husband to keep their zoo in piece rather than be destroyed for war supplies, he's willing to concede it.

The zookeeper and his wife want to try and use their zoo to house as many Jews as they can. They approach the stately quarters of Hitler's zoologist …