By Hervé St-Louis
October 10, 2012 - 21:17
Briefly on Prometheus, which I reviewed way back in June, the movie’s design and sets are grandiose with even beautiful landscapes and artifact design vaguely inspired by HR Giger’s original pre-production art for the first 1979 Alien movie. The design of the technology used by the humans and the Engineers are different. The human’s is your standard spaceship with computing interfaces inspired from the current crop of mobile technologies we use daily. The Engineers’ technology, on the other hand, is more cellular-looking, more like biological building blocks. And of course, there is the seminal figure of The Engineers themselves inspired by the God-like perfect figures that antiquity and Renaissance painters and sculptors indulged in. If Prometheus has one message, it’s that humans were created from a perfect source embodied by the towering seven-foot albino Engineers. Their stoic expressions reminds one of a Michelangelo fresco.
The home theatre release of Prometheus does offer viewers a little bit more insight into mind of the remaining live Engineer who tries to kill the entire crew after having been revived from a 2000 years slumber. He utters a few words that David, the human-like android deciphers. Many scenes created with the version of the film where the Engineer had spoken were removed from the cut that made it to the theatre in the summer of 2012. There are few insights into what the Engineer is really up to though. However, the commentary by both Ridley Scott and writer Damon Lindelof on separate tracks will prove quite interesting for fans searching for bits of information on what exactly the point of the film was. And to that end, I’d say that there may have been enough information on the film, and viewers who probably felt the most cheated by the lack of a definite answer about what the alien is were probably those that wanted Scott to link Prometheus clearly with the Alien universe. Comic book fans often have the same tendencies of wanting everything to be explained and to “make sense.” As a casual viewer who's not particularly knowledgeable about Alien and its lore, I didn’t have that specific problem with Prometheus. For me it was the lack of action, and the constant discovery, that literally turned the film into a classic, but predictable, horror film where each member of the cast is taken out one after another by a mass-killer or a unknown force. That wasn’t very original, no matter how much the film was covered with remarkable visuals.
The Blu-Ray/DVD producers wanted to capture the fetishism of the interface used in the movie, and thus created a very desktop-like interface to navigate through the discs. That wasn’t a very good idea as the menus were smaller than usual and the color palette used didn’t have enough contrasts when watching the film in bright light. That made it very difficult to navigate or even read what was described within the menus on a smaller screen. It wasn’t the best design interactive interface I’ve seen. The user experience designers who thought of this should have considered the facility and ease of use instead of trying to replicate a desktop computer on a small lower-resolution screen.
There are two versions of the Prometheus collection on disc. One contains two discs; one DVD with a digital copy and a Blu-Ray disc. The second collection contains four discs with similar materials, but with behind the scenes features as well as the extra scenes contained in the two-discs collection.
Rating: 8 /10