Prometheus ★★★

Not a 'dumb' film necessarily, though its characters often are. Some conversations work, others feel noticeably underwritten. Gorgeous at times. I like where its mind is headed, though the balance between sci-fi conventions and subversion is not particularly satisfying. Something more visceral or something more abstract might have won me over. Trying to meet the standard structures, reveals, and (to an extent) action does it more harm than good, almost interrupting its greatest strengths. I appreciate its uniqueness, and I'm let down by its shortcuts to genre, theatricality, and to the franchise that it seems equally distant from and reliant on. Despite running at a solid two hours, it leaves me with a feeling closer to a bonus short film prologue buried away in festivals, blu-rays, and YouTube rips.

Credit to Michael Fassbender at least for leaving a big impression. And an equally significant choice of locale that feels equally human and alien - a meaningful and clever choice that I wish got explored in a more psychological or at least purposeful way.

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