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Prometheus Revisited

Prometheus Revisited

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chli

Sep-12-2019 8:15 AM

After interesting discussions with Michelle Johnston (and agreeing with most of the conclusions on her blog), I felt an urge to watch Prometheus with commentary on, listening to Sir Ridley Scott, Jon Spaihts and Damon Lindelof sharing their reflections on the making of Prometheus. I have compiled some of the thoughts which I find interesting here and have arranged them into different areas. There is no silver thread running through this post, just some observations.

The Opening Scene

In the opening scene, we see primaeval Earth. In the beginning, we see it from the viewpoint of the seeding ship (Engineers looking out through a window upon Earth), its shadow moving over the ground. It’s a lifeless Earth and the sacrificial Engineer marks the dawn of life on Earth.

When the Engineer has drunk the mutagen he dissolves into parts and smoke (small airborne particles), seeding his DNA into the water and air, spreading it over Earth.

Sir Peter Weyland

Weyland is, at least not in the first place, after money but only to prolong his own life. Being a superior being, he deserves this . . . (hubris). The theme of the inevitable death is the same in Bladerunner where Roy Batty seeks his creator in order to ask for more life (which his creator cannot give him).

Miss Vickers

As cynical as her father, she’s merely interested in a career within the company. She is not interested in philosophical questions. After awakening, she asks David if everyone’s alive - in actuality referring to her father (knowing he’s onboard) and hoping there will be an end to this ridiculous expedition: “Doesn’t everyone want their parents dead?”.

David

David is instructed by his “father” (Mr Weyland) to help him find a way to prolong his life. He even tells him to “try harder”. He is instructed not to harm a human being so, therefore, he asks Holloway what he is prepared to do in order to find his answers. Holloway answers “anything and everything” and thereby greenlights David’s action (spicing the drink with mutagen). David despises his creators who humiliate him (They made him because they could) and whom he believes he is superior to.

The Space Jockey

The Space Jockey is an Engineer and at the end of Prometheus, we see him return to his chair, going full circle with Alien, as it were. Strapping himself up in the chair, he becomes one with the engine and the juggernaut.

The Space Jockey on LV-426 is responsible for what happened on LV-223 and is eventually infected himself. After the chestburster has exited through the ribcage, it makes off and finally dies somewhere.

Humans

Humans were created by the Engineers, “in their image”. There was no higher purpose, just an experiment (Earth was their petri dish). They made us because they could . . . and when they weren’t pleased with the result, they decided to unmake us.

The Monster

The Deacon, or the xenomorph, is created through human (or hominid) sacrifice (which is seen in the mural), just as the Engineer, in the beginning, is sacrificed for creation (of life).

52 Responses to Prometheus Revisited

Michelle Johnston

Sep-17-2019 6:46 AM

@BigDave

 

For me this post "Sep-16-2019 5:09 PM" gets the numb of my frustration. 

We are not discussing the evolution of a scene we are discussing what the scene actually used means. 

The opening scene is intent on sending out one message. Evolution of the humanoid experience involved planned intervention through a ritual of sacrifice.

The attack and fragmentation on existing cells which reform in a much more graceful and more sophisticated way is a clear sign of upgrade.

I am not at home this week so I cannot replay the Scott or Lindelof/Spaiht's commentary, I recall Ridley saying it might be earth so it is about intervention in humankind's development. I am well aware of the journey to this final sequence but that is not important in describing whether Prometheus had a firm grip of what it is trying to say. By talking about all the various evolutionary elements merely clouds the issue here, which is the film vague? It is not in this scene, what lies behind it is for later but what it communicates is clear.  

Pietro Scalia offers his insights as to why the 8 Engineers are left out, for a long time they were in the cut, but they wanted to retain mystery and meet God in the second film.

Thats important in judging the reasoning for the cut was it because they wanted to avoid showing the quasi sacramental nature of the donation? There is no evidence to support that notion. Indeed none of the cuts made were excluded for reasons of content but pace, with the exception of the dialogue about the Engineers coming from Paradise. Pietro's Scalia offered his view is the idea was not carried through, Paradise could mean earth but in general the connection was not thought through. In understanding where they go next that might be important but I am unconvinced by Pietro's argument, the dialogue offered from the woken Engineer was cut and that is why you could not refer to it. But in the end going to meet God is important, whether you call it Paradise or not.

I promise to listen to the two commentaries next week and check if there are ambiguities across the three contributors.

@chili

When a micro biologist puts something in a petri dish he is curious to see what the outcome is. It's a form of experiment to see what you can grow. So curiosity is part of the reason you put something in a Petri Dish. The two ideas are not mutually exclusive. 

David applies the same logic with his bottle of bubbles.           

"David turned the ampule on its length and the black cloudy substance lurking at the top of the ampule filtered down and merged with the Green Liquid. David snapped the end off the ampule and placed his right index finger on the opening he had created. He looked intently into the black droplet on the end of his finger. He had opened the lid of Pandora’s Pithos.

To him though it was a simply a moment of curiosity and he relied on his alter ego and Dryden’s words for the narrative.

 “Big Things Have Small Beginnings.”

He replaced the Cylinder and ........................

David knew the origins of the proverb, ‘Curiosity kills the cat.’ and its associations with one of those plays of Shakespeare kept in the Life Boat. However what had just happened was not “Much a Do About Nothing” it was quite the opposite it was about everything, and  it re opened the way to Pandemonium." 

Chapter 6 Connections. 

Your use of the phrase amused me.

 

BigDave

Sep-17-2019 8:32 AM

@Michelle

I think there has been a little Misunderstanding regarding the Point i was trying to raise which can get clouded in the amount i write... so i will try and make a Nutshell Version.


Lindeloff seems to be indicating the Sacrificial Scene was likely on Earth and that this EVENT is what started LIFE... indicating the World Before was Life-Less...   

The Movie was showing this World would have HAD to have signs of Life, but then Lindeloffs Comment can be taken as GOSPEL if certainly some take the Notion the World is FLAT!

What i am saying is that we can look at his Comment and look at the Opening Scene and it appears this World would have had to Already have some Basic Form of Life....   so my point was in Regards to Lindeloffs Comment... and how the Movie is Slightly Contradicting if you look at it from WHAT state the World was in prior.. this is a Oversight maybe... or indeed it does not Effect Really the whole POINT of the Scene.

The Evolution i talk about is in Spaights Draft the Sacrificial Scene was to show this Event caused the Engineers DNA to be Merged with already Existing Life (Primordial Humanoid)..  Then i was also looking at Ridley Scotts comments which suggest the Engineers have done this over and over on  Worlds....

so all i was saying was that (Considering all and NOT just Lindeloff) the Sacrificial Scene was to show the Engineers Sacrifice was a Catalyst to Evolve Life to become Complex and so without that Sacrifice then there would likely be NO LIFE as we know it. (it was not to dispute or suggest others on here had NOT understand that was the point of the Scene)

In another Interview i think i recall Lindeloff suggesting a Process of Evolution but i cant quite recall when/where this was so i could be MISTAKEN...

I was pointing out that REGARDLESS... in what way or Version we look at, the Indication remains the SAME.... the Engineers use the Sacrificial Rituals to lead to a World to have LIFE as we know it.....

It is likely that World had Basic Life before that Scene, but we cant rule out of a similar EVENT had happened that provided the Basic Life....  Ridley Scott had proposed if the Engineers are the Forerunners of Mankind, then what makes it Possible for Worlds to Support Life in the First Place... where is the Big Guy.

So what this is saying is that Worlds get Terra-formed, they then have Water, and Basic Life which could be a Created Event.. then these Worlds are RIPE for the Donation of a Engineers DNA, and we Cant rule out if this Process is done over and over.

So all i am saying is we have to Consider what the Movie Shows, and what Ridley Scott, Lindeloff and Spaights say about the Scene  as a WHOLE (but in Context to the Final Cut) and to NOT just take One Persons Word for it....

So Regardless what the Scene shows is how you are saying, and thats EXACTLY how i see it too...  i was only merely adding that the Scene Visually did-not look like this World was LIFE-LESS and thats all i was saying in that Regards....

I was not intending for us to Consider other Deleted Scenes, which give us different reasons for Creation, such as Jon Spaights Alien 01 The Master Narrative to Deleted Dialog between the Elder Engineer and Sacrificial Engineer....

These are Deleted or Changed and so SHOULD NOT be considered as what is happening... Things Change.... i mean in 2012 there was not the Thought that David Created the Xenomorph, but that seems to be the Case Now... so then certain stuff we have to Throw Out and Not Considered....

I had understood the Reason for the Deletion of some Scenes are Pacing, for a Theatrical Cut the Company (FOX) would prefer something to be more to 2 Hours and so some things get CUT.

Ridley Scott had indicated the Elders Scene would have given a bit too much away, and so the removal of the Scene Creates a Sense of Mystery...... he also DID-NOT want to meet GOD in the First Movie as you pointed out....

Lindeloff just gives the Explanation about having the Engineers Talk would take away some Mystery and it would be more Mysterious if we dont get to see them Talk, as well they would not be Interested in Talking to us seems his insight into it....

I was not trying to cover any such Deleted Scenes... there are Other reasons some Scenes get CUT!  For example by Re-Shooting the Dr Shaw vs Engineer Scene, after Shooting the Scripted Version, means we see our Engineer Enter the Ship with Burns.. so they would then have had to Deleted Scenes prior from the point of the Engineer leaving the Juggernaut because it would contradict what the Shot that they decided to have would have shown  (Face Burn).

I think a lot of times i write too much and people can get lost in what i am writing and i struggle to keep things in a NUTSHELL

So i think often things are overlooked or misunderstood and i maybe end up Flooding the Site...

so i may Consider taking a Break from such Places until we get any News of any other Movie... as i Understand peoples Posts can get LOST among the Masses of Posts i make.... i just have a Great Interest into the Prequels and what Potential they had prior to 2015

so those last few Paragraphs are NOT Relevant to what i was pointing out... which was that INDEED... the Sacrificial Scene was to show that the Engineers are involved in the Creation and Evolution of Life on Worlds.

This requires a Sacrifice with the Sacrificial Mutagen to Spread their DNA... and so really its a case of NO SUCH EVENT... and its indicated that Worlds, well our World would NOT have Life as we know it.

R.I.P Sox  01/01/2006 - 11/10/2017

BigDave

Sep-17-2019 8:44 AM

"The reason might simply be curiosity?"

Certainly and that is what i was saying, "They had achieved so much.... and thought maybe... OK.. so whats NEXT?"

So it was a Curiosity, Science is based a lot on such, we Ponder...... what is this?, what if we do that?, what is there?

Curiosity is a Driving Force for sure...

With the Engineers they are so Advanced, we have to assume their Genetical Engineer Knowledge and Tools are so Advanced.... that they can take Curiosity to other Levels.

For Example... its likely we have Tried and Pondered with Curiosity if we can Inter-Bread or Genetically  Cross Breed Species.....  Can you MIX a Cat with a Dog?  I am sure this has been a Question and Attempted before.. to NO Success but the Curiosity would have been there...

But what if in Future then we Advance our Science were we Discover a Way to Create Such a Hybrid...  then if we allow our Curiosity to override our Moral Compass, then it would be a case of.... OK so what else can we now try and Cross-Breed.....

The Engineers who view themselves as Superior, maybe Gods would NOT have any such Moral Compass... and thats when indeed Curiosity could KILL the Cat!

So Curiosity, a sense of pushing Boundaries to what they could Create as a sign of Testing their Achievements and also perhaps being a bit Bored with what they are/have are Good reasons to go about and Create Something Else.

This is maybe similar to what Promotes David to do what he had done. (Alien Covenant) to a degree.

R.I.P Sox  01/01/2006 - 11/10/2017

chli

Sep-17-2019 10:55 AM

Curiosity is indeed part of the mythos. Pandora’s box is opened because of her curiosity and all the evils which befall men are let loose. But “hope” remains at the bottom of the box.

Shaw is perhaps the one who clings to faith and hope? But she is also driven by curiosity. She opens the box (awakens the Engineer) and lets loose mankind’s bane. :)

BigDave

Sep-17-2019 5:59 PM

Certainly we have Dr Shaw and Holloways curiosity that leads them to Propose their Findings which Weyland then decided to Fund the Expedition....  Once they explore that Complex they In Effect Re-Open Pandora's Box ;)

The only HOPE she could be looking for, would be that there had to be someone IN CHARGE behind all of this, Creation and Attempt to Destroy us.

She could be HOPEFUL that they Changed their Mind some 2000 years ago, maybe she would be asking HOW-COME they never came back to Finish the Job?

So what i am saying is she maybe has HOPE that those above the Engineers or in Charge do-not or No-Longer have such Destructive Intentions for us...

It would have been Interesting to see her come Face to Face with such Beings through her Curiosity and Demands for Answers.... but ALAS we was Robed of that ;)

I do like so many of the Themes and Potential it had... i will have to Listen to the Full Commentary again as far as any Indications more on Motive about LV-223 and how the Prometheus Mythos could FIT... i am not sure it covers such though... i will have to Re-Watch it all again.

I think i can remember that Lindeloff just gave another Simple Because they Could Answer again...  "why was we created... because they could, why did they want to Destroy us, because they could/got bored"  Thats not a Direct Quote, thats just kinda what i Interpreted he was getting at...

As in (and i will have watch it again as been Years) they Created us for something to do, a Experiment, they got a bit Bored and wondered what Else they could Create, and they created some Horrid Stuff and decided lets use this on our Human Creations for Curiosity to see what Happens.

Again i Vaguely remember so bare with me ;) i could have Misinterpreted what i Vaguely remember ;)

I do Recall in Furious Gods it was a case of the Prometheus Crew where off to meet what the Writers Considered Prometheus... (Engineers)  I have always been Fascinated in how such Mythos could Tie in with the Engineers ;)

R.I.P Sox  01/01/2006 - 11/10/2017

Michelle Johnston

Sep-18-2019 3:29 AM

@BigDave

Thank you for your clarification. You obviously know me well enough to know I am not attention seeking and looking to pick an argument. I simply want to cut through this notion that is rife on the internet that Prometheus does not communicate. It is a curious thing that some find it vague and in coherent and yet it ends up the subject of doctorate thesis and theologians work and that is because, as you know, it works thematically and symbolically. It is obvious to me everyone on the ship with the exception of the grunts (Janek, Chance and Ravel) are deeply flawed and that is entirely right for a group of human beings who sign up for a mission without knowing what it is or do so searching hubristically for our makers. That Milburn a promiscuous homosexual flirts with the hammerpede and has oral sex seems entirely logical. That Fifield is a loud mouth pot smoker who runs at the first time of trouble and ends up being a fearless super human quasi morph is another interesting take but try to explain that to people who are not paying attention.

Equally in terms of the Prometheus narrative it is interesting that the perfect creation starts making mistakes, makes dangerous judgements and gets his head ripped off.

Communing with strangers on the internet is for mankind a relatively new way of exchanging. It shows how difficult and overwhelming it can be when you are talking to thousands of people at once and its very chaotic trying to cut through to the truth. I have absolutely no problem with people taking a different view to me but so much of what is said is ill informed, indeed incorrect and says more about peoples prejudices.

On Instagram the other day someone said how come The James Bond DB5 is in NO Time To Die. It was blown up in the last movie. I reminded them it was blown up in Skyfall and rebuilt by Q in Spectre and the two protagonists left at the end of the film in it. Response "I am entitled to my opinion."     

     

Michelle Johnston

Sep-18-2019 4:17 AM

@BigDave

On the question of how much Prometheus the myth would be reflected in the subsequent movie. 

First of all it is a very layered tradition with many elements to it. The precise role of Prometheus his brother and Pandora shifts and changes over many centuries.

The way I extrapolated it going forward was based on three themes :-

1) Prometheus had stolen technology.

2) Zeus punished Prometheus in two ways.

a) The Liver extraction endless punishment.

b) Pandora as a bride of Prometheus Brother is provided with the Urn (which is full of ills) and they have a child Pyrrha who after the flood with her husband must repopulate earth. 

3) In one legend once the Urn is almost empty at the bottom is hope.

All of those elements are echoed through the Engineers their annihilation, Weyland the aspirational brother of the Engineers, the opening of the Cylinder and the woes it brings and whether children are born of Elizabeth to repopulate. Elizabeth has to decide whether those children represent hope. 

Outside of the pure Promethean myth is if an unauthorised biological and artificial construct turn up at the source of an Intelligent Creation, which by definition has gone wrong, what might they possibly contribute. Then of course you move to the Judo Christian riffing or my vision how the religions of the world echo a distant truth as we are not quite the full ticket.  

I do not think you ever want to read an "old book" and rewrite it slavishly but recognise the movements and thoughts that have gone into them and see whether that gives your story for David and Elizabeth a sense of authority.

 

That is why the movie is taken seriously because it is rooted in traditions. 

However what a story really needs is vigour and that must be self starting with its own unique energy.    

chli

Sep-18-2019 11:05 AM

Fun to draw parallels . . . :)

The Classic Greek myth about Prometheus permeates the movie which also alludes to “the Modern Prometheus” (Frankenstein).

The themes of “creation” and "death" are essential in both of them. In the Prometheus myth, Pandora is created out of clay. She is the first mortal woman, that is doomed to die.

Both Mr Weyland and Victor Frankenstein are obsessed with conquering death (Frankenstein because of the tragic death of his mother).

Shaw is equally eager to find the answers behind life and death (because of her parents). Like Pandora, she is mortal - and too curious . . .

David is also a curious boy, "a very strange, enchanted boy", who notes that "the gods" (the Engineers) are "mortal after all" . . .

BigDave

Sep-19-2019 5:31 PM

Thanks Michelle

Indeed its a shame that Prometheus has got some Flak from Fans, its certainly a Movie that the More you see it and overlook its Flaws, then you get to realize the Scope, the Thought Provoking Elements to the Movie.

Theatrically its a Movie that not many would Understand after First Viewing, there are Ambiguous Elements, but there is a lot of Clarity that some dont get.... Visually its a Wonder, its a Mystery Adventure more than any kind of Horror or Action that maybe some would have thought it would be about..... i feel a lot of Fans Expected it to be Very much a ALIEN Movie and so they tried HARD to see how it fits with ALIEN, and while there are Clues, it remained too Ambiguous in some Areas..

But having some things that are NOT Spoon Fed, does mean you can Speculate, you can Wonder, and it also means that any Sequels have the Option to Change things, were as if we had a SPOON FED Movie then a Continuation you have so Many things that would be Set in Stone that too Continue your kind of stuck on Rails rather than being Free.

Parts of the Commentary and Furious Gods, give us a Insight into what some of those who Worked on the Project intended or view the Movie to mean....

I think i was HARSH on Lindeloff, i think the way he just does not Elaborate on things, is to allow the Fans to Speculate a little...

I think Regardless of how we look at it there are some Basics at Play that i think should have been Pretty Clear to Viewers....

This is that without the Engineers Interaction with Mankind from not only the Sacrifice/Seeding, then WE would not be here, and also NOT have achieved what we had and maybe would still NOW be working with Stone Tools and Painting with Hands in a Cave.....

So Prometheus gave us that First Piece of Technology (Fire) as Weyland said in the TED TALK.... Prometheus as in those Engineers....

R.I.P Sox  01/01/2006 - 11/10/2017

BigDave

Sep-19-2019 5:43 PM

Regarding the Prometheus Link...

This is something that could play in a number of ways, certainly as it did with Frankenstein.  Its a Question of HOW really Literal are we talking?

It seems the NAME had came a while after the Majority of the Plot was in Place, so maybe it may-not bare too much of a Connection.

The Broad Strokes i guess should be to Consider that Prometheus was a kind of God, who had played a Role in the Creation of Mankind, and the Teaching of Knowledge to Mankind..... Until he had Given/Taught Mankind something the other Gods had NOT wanted us to Have/Know.....

And for this he was Punished...

In  the Mythos then indeed we have the Pandora and her Box as our Punishment for the whole Transgression against the Gods.... but its HOW Literal we look at this (Pandora).

So there is a lot of AMBIGUITY to how these could connect.... when they call the Engineers Prometheus, then do we have to LOOK at it as they Created us, by Order or Acknowledgement of their Hierarchy.

Then its a case of their Visitations or Further Genetic Enhancements to Mankind, are these something the Hierarchy had Permitted... or ONLY to a certain Degree.

Had their been some Tampering with us Genetically, or/and Certain Knowledge that was Taught that those who DID this to us, had done so AGAINST the other Would Be Gods wishes?

I think when Ridley Scott also alludes to Paradise Lost, i do often see Parallels between Lucifer and Prometheus.  So i always felt even if Loosely how these Connect would be Interesting, especially going forwards with any Sequel.

When looking at Prometheus and the Mythos i have always seen a Familiarity between these.

R.I.P Sox  01/01/2006 - 11/10/2017

ali81

Sep-22-2019 4:52 AM

we have to look at the comments made by RS in the lead up to the production and making of the film and the basis of the problems, at least for me, become very apparent.

initially RS STATED he was making a full alien prequel movie that was intended to be the first in a hopeful trilogy. even if he was not going to continue with later films for say, the film bombed, he at least had the intent of leaving the door wide open for someone else at a later date to continue on. as the pre-production of the film progressed he realised there was a more important question (at least to him) that had not been asked in any of the other alien movies. thusly, who was the pilot of the derelict and what was the connection to the xeno/eggs? he then STATES he is making a stand alone movie with the intent of a trilogy that would eventually tie into the original. unfortunately for him, so many people cant look past his original statement in that this is meant to directly tie into alien from the offset. the man himself has stated he has doubts on a god creating all things but never claims one doesn't exist. so hes looking into a possibility as to the creation of ourselves. remember, god 'apparently' created man in his image so that ties into why the engineers look so much like us. its only our evolution on a different planet that separates us. its safe to assume that these creators would be vastly more evolved than ourselves in terms of thinking and tech to even consider they could create us unnaturally.

RS makes an astonishingly good jump off point in Prometheus but it has divided so many due to some bad casting and a film that needed another 30 mins at least of screen time which would have greatly helped in character building and holes to be filled. remember alien takes over 45 mins to even get to the good stuff and is still regarded a masterpiece which shows people will accept a slow pace to begin with if done for the right reasons and in the right way. something Prometheus sorely lacks. the point of Prometheus is not in any way to give answers. its the origin of the question. I hate how people shit on it due only to the argument 'not enough aliens' or 'it raised more questions than gave answers'. listen to what RS said. its a stand alone movie with the hopes of a trilogy to tie into alien at the end. the first movie isn't supposed to grant answers, that's the job of the sequels. for the not enough aliens problem, we get a giant facehugger, a deacon and an alien humanoid whose whole history would have scientists drooling at the mouth. the greatest discovery in the history of mankind. what else do u want? is the film itself flawed? yes. but imo that's nothing to do with the film itself and more choices in casting and the film not being long enough. the biggest casting problem for me was Theron. wasted wasted wasted wasted. she should have been Shaw or Daniels. I have no issues at all with the plot of the film and love how after watching it I had so many different ideas and thoughts on where they could go. were the engineers split into factions due to civil unrest/war? did they serve a higher power? did they discover the original xeno/deacon and experiment? WHAT WAS THE WHOLE STORY REGARDING THE DERELICT?

unfortunately for me, they made Alien Covenant.....

F**K all those questions. the android did it.

well F**K YOU very much for trashing it all. I for one will never have a third viewing of AC and I curse them for it. I was looking forward to that movie sooooo much more than iv ever wanted to see a movie. even the trailers were awesome but the film was garbage and now I don't even care if they ever make a sequel. for me the franchise ends at Prometheus

MonsterZero

Sep-22-2019 11:03 AM

' the android did it.'

??

More like: Weyland did it...Humanity did it.

If not for Peter Weyland, David would be a assembly robot on Mars building spaceships or rovers.

David the caretaker opened the box...Woke the devil...planted the seed.

David(humanity) is Prometheus. 

Michelle Johnston

Sep-22-2019 1:44 PM

@BigDave

"I don't want to meet God in the first movie."

This assumes you wish to meet God in the second movie.

Given he offers this thought during the Waterfall Incident it becomes important to establish a narrative possibility from the ritual on display.

The transmission of God, of God entering the world is through sacrifice.  

When Elizabeth considers the fresco's the reproduction mechanism she discovers is through hosting.

When Charlie considers the mural the transmission mechanism of the Deacon's characteristic is through sacrifice.

Like Frankenstein it denies the onlooker sexual reproduction.

We arrive at the end of the movie with a question about sexual knowledge and reproduction and we are sat there with a barren woman who has given birth to a chaotic accident and an android incapable of reproduction.

When we arrive wherever we arrive we need to learn why there is a denial of sexual reproduction in what we know so far. Haven't our makers figured out sexual reproduction unless that is to look at it the wrong way round.

So the Engineers may not be conceived through the mechanism of a loving relationship but rather like Frankensteins Monster and David out of creative knowledge. They are created out of a void whereas mankind is created out of chaos (to paraphrase and borrow from Mary Shelley).

So an extension of the film can deal with.

1) Are the creatures of the Moon Promethean.

2) If they are they were destroyed (which ever way self or third party.)

3) Why did they leave and wish to sub create what was wrong in Paradise? 

4) Who made them and what is their relationship with their creators. 

If we get those answers its extremely likely mankind is a footnote in this movement and the result of error in the plan and thats when we start to look at Elizabeth who is displaying a good deal of Miltonic Adam and Frankenstein's Monster and has had an annunciation of sorts and is now looking a lot like Pandora.

So with all that heavyweight theology weighing down the two characters how can you avoid sitting around for two hundred pages or 2 hours and not just rocking up and talking the meaning of life. There has to be a point to their journey which they are not aware of.

Probably if you take the view that creative knowledge is destructive (which it has been) and sexual knowledge is denied (which appears to be) then you can put Elizabeth through the ringer show her her personal Paradise but also her more general hell and see how she makes out with the robot that made her pregnant who she chooses to Fix with a typical female viewpoint "I can make him the man I want him to be", you know the redemption chick.Oh no not more hubris !

Except David was also created for all the wrong reasons and as others have worked out Weyland's understanding of Prometheus is a little flawed. So maybe David and Elizabeth don't fall in love they fall out of love with all around them.       

 

 

BigDave

Sep-22-2019 4:50 PM

@ali81

Indeed the Prequels went through various stages of Evolution before we got to Shooting of Prometheus.

The Initial Intention was some kind of Prequel that appeared to be a Direct Prequel, but there was Flaws, the Time-Line was wrong but this was down to Spaights not being Familiar with WHEN the Movie ALIEN was set, as it had NO Time-Line, its only from ALIENS that we can get a 2122 Time-Line due to the Acknowledgement that Ripley was Floating in Space for 57 years.

I am not sure that Idea would have led to Sequels that would lead to ALIEN, it seems that it Indicated the Ending of the Movie well the Crashing of the Juggernaught would be what led to the Derelict, but that a Sequel would STEER AWAY from ALIEN.

If we had Alien Engineers as a Direct Prequel to Alien, even if the Time-Line was FIXED to be say 2072-2092, there would have been Conflicts with the Franchise, the Wreckage of the Magellan, the Life-Boat, Pyramids and the Signal that came from the Pyramids and NOT the Derelict.

So it needed some Tidy up, and so thats when Lindeloff came in, only the ALIEN elements and clues to the Derelict where TONED DOWN maybe too much.  None the less the indication was to give some Clues to a Connection but to also keep it Ambiguous to keep some Mystery thus leaving the Derelict as a ANCIENT MYSTERY.

Prometheus became a Stand Alone as in its Events would NOT directly tie into ALIEN as far as the Derelict.   It was left open ended so that if there was NO Sequel it would not cause any real Conflict, but it was set up to Warrant a Sequel that would have STEERED AWAY from ALIEN.

Fox took On-board complaints about Prometheus and they assumed the Biggest Problem was Fans wanted to see Xenomorphs and have a Sequel that would Directly lead to ALIEN and the Derelict.... and thus ALIEN COVENANT was born....

Which i felt was a Unnecessary way forwards.

R.I.P Sox  01/01/2006 - 11/10/2017

BigDave

Sep-22-2019 5:34 PM

@Michelle

Indeed the "never wanted to meet God" was in connection to the removal of the Elders Scene, it can be Interpreted in many ways as he never gave a real explanation.   They felt that the Elders Scene and especially the Dialog would have GIVEN away too much and so they decided to keep some Mystery... so we can assume such things are open to be Explored in a Sequel.

I think the Comment by Dr Shaw "so who created them" was there to Indicate the Engineers are not the Highest Chain in the Creation Plot, there are other Layers before them it seemed.

Ridley Scott had said that they (David and Shaw) would be off to the Planet of the Engineers to meet these beings who are not Gods in the Traditional Sense.... so who knows how they would have explored it, the Elders appeared to be just OLDER versions of the Engineers.. was RS disappointed in their look, they seemed to be more Frail and less Godlike than the other Engineers.

I feel a lot is open to Interpretation, RS had referred to the Engineers as Dark Angels, the Fallen Angels, but WHO? the LV-223 Engineers, the Sacrificial Engineer, the WHOLE of the Engineers?

so it depends on how you interpret that, with Prometheus it is touching on  the Chariots of the Gods, where our Mythos and Religions came from Interaction with the Engineers, and so its like suggesting there could be Multiple Layers to the Hierarchy..  Most Mythos and Religion have a CAST system, a Hierarchy, where there are a GOD or GODS at the Top... it appears the Engineers are likely NOT at that Top Layer

I think it depends how LITERAL we also look into things, but the point i am raising is the Fallen Angels are a Rebellious Sub-Creation of GOD, likewise Prometheus was a Treacherous Sub-Creation too.

I think we can kind of unlock more into Ridley Scotts thinking when in 2015 after the announcement of Alien: Paradise Lost he had said that if the Engineers are the Forerunners of Mankind, then what made it possible for Worlds to be able to Support Life in the First Place.... where is the BIG GUY?

What i draw from that though is a Indication that the Reason that their are Worlds that are able to Support Life is NOTHING that is by Pure Accident, and so its a Planned and Designed Outcome that is likely Carried out by something/someone that is above our Engineers in that Hierarchy.

My Interpretation prior to 2014 was maybe wondering could the LV-223 Engineers have more in Common with David than us?  The LV-223 Engineers at least... and so i wondered if they Rebelled against their Creator and this is WHY they are considered Fallen Angels?

When we Flash Forwards to Alien Covenant, we had Ridley Scott claim those Planet 4 Engineers are the Originals.... so what did that make those LV-223 guys?

so maybe when Ridley Scott said he did not want to meet GOD, he could have indicated that those LV-223 Engineers and maybe Sacrificial Engineers are themselves a Sub-Created Species and we would indeed be off to discover as Dr Shaw had said "who made them" who may have been revealed to be similar to the Engineers anyway?

Its difficult to know for sure, unless we ever see any of the Earlier Drafts by Paglen and Green that dated prior to 2015.

This reply is just how i saw things though, regarding the NOT having to meet God, which i saw and also based on other comments that the Engineers are merely just the same Layer as the Angels would be in the Biblical Accounts... or either 2nd Generation Titans  or Olympians in Greek Mythos or Igigi in the Ancient Mesopotamian accounts.

I certainly think that you make GREAT points about a Creation that has no LOVE... like Frankenstein.

We see that really David was created like this... we could wonder if those LV-223 Engineers were Created like that too.

Was we Created the same?  Was their NO Care or Love in our Creation? What a Revelation that would be for Dr Shaw..... or if she discovered we was Created for a Good Purpose and our Creators had more Care for us than say how Weyland had for David....

If those Watchers on LV-223 was not created in such a way and similar to David, then they could be Jealous of of Creation, just as Lucifer was of Adam...

LV-223 Engineers Tasked to Donate their Superior DNA to Create us, for their Creators who IF they had a Fond Outlook on Mankind could make those LV-223 kind Jealous, maybe they would try and Control and Corrupt us? Try to present themselves as our Gods....?

So yes there could have been Interested ways to have expanded the Engineers History, either by that way above or similar.

Or revelation that Mankind are just insignificant Creation that was created with No Love involved...

If you meant Love as in a Creation from a Natural Coming together of a Male/Female to Produce a Off-Spring than that also is a Interesting thing to cover.

If we looked at the Planet 4 Engineers as a Original Species who can Procreate with each other, and the LV-223 Engineers were a Sub-Creation who CANT procreate, but they are to Watch Over Mankind... and they could ask WHY is it that Mankind can Procreate like their Creators, and yet they CANT!

They could find that Frustrating and maybe see themselves treated like 2nd Class Citizens like David is... especially as they seemed more Enhanced and Superior to those Planet 4 Engineers and Mankind.

For such a Sterile Sub-Creation (if we assume thats what they are) then maybe they could HOLD being Created in the Image of the Planet 4 Engineers a bit of a Mockery, maybe they got infected with something that would then allow them to GIVE BIRTH and Create Life where they could NOT....(just as Dr Shaw did via the Black Goo) those Engineers on LV-223 could see this as some Miracle, in that they can indeed GIVE BIRTH and to a New Species they may see as being Superior to their Creators, and so they Worshiped this and intended to Evolve/Corrupt all of their Masters Creations with this Horrific New Form.

Thats kind of how i Interpret what the LV-223 Engineers were and connections to the Fresco etc.

R.I.P Sox  01/01/2006 - 11/10/2017

BigDave

Sep-22-2019 5:36 PM

"More like: Weyland did it...Humanity did it"

MonsterZero thats kind of Right, if we go further back then the Engineers did it, if they Never Created us then NONE of this mess would have happened.

So thats one of the Big Themes, the Hubris of Sub-Creation and Consequences ;)

R.I.P Sox  01/01/2006 - 11/10/2017

hox

Sep-22-2019 9:54 PM

I’d make a couple of observations about the opening scenes.

1. The planet appears to be largely barren of life, but some of the warmer/greener hills and valleys strongly hint at the presence of chlorophyll. Something like moss or grass. Yeah, I’ve visited Iceland! So, a planet featuring life at an early stage of development. We can speculate where that basic life came from originally, but there’s something for the Engineers to work with.

2. The black goo that interferes with the Engineer’s DNA is not elemental. By this I mean it is not composed of what we could call chemical matter with its 94 naturally occurring elements. Or indeed any synthetic element. How do we know this? Because the goo is much smaller than atomic matter, specifically the nucleobases shown in the engineered DNA strands. It is to atomic matter as a snowflake is to a mountain. In other words something that is way beyond the Standard Model of particle physics. That’s fine: scientists are currently grappling with known but unseen stuff called Dark Matter, so we know there’s much more going on in this universe than we’re aware of.

MonsterZero

Sep-23-2019 5:52 AM

Let's remove Shaw and David from Prometheus.

 

A young Peter Weyland (12ish?early twenties?) finds the cave painting(on family holiday or something...father/mother archaeologist? )....This fuels his life long fascination with creation and the search for ET....later in life, having the capital to do so, he returns to the cave painting mystery(Having dedicated a small part of Weyland corp to research it).....

With help from MUTHUR,  Peter forces open the door...wakes the Engineer(Walter advises against)

 

'.....Unable to reach the door controls, Weyland told Walter to "get on his hands and knees" so he could stand on his back...'

Walter complied. He resisted the urge to 'bark'. He'd spent plenty of time with Weyland's young daughters, playing many pretend creatures.

'What is the sequence Walter!?'

BigDave

Sep-23-2019 9:48 AM

@hox

Indeed the Opening Scene would appear to Indicate that this Primordial World had some Basic Life at the Very Least, which was a point i was raising Earlier in the TopicDamien Lindeloff indicated the Sacrificial Scene was the Start of LIFE as we KNOW it... so that could be taken as Life as we have today which is Complex Life, and not Micro-Organisms which have been Present for about 3.5 Billion Years.

My Interpretation of the Scene points me to speculate what that Scene was doing was the Catalyst for how Basic Microbial Life had Evolved into Complex Organisms.   The World had Basic Life, but we dont really know HOW this Basic Life had got on this World, it could be that this is also a Result of the Engineers Interference on Worlds, even as far as Possible Terra-forming of said Worlds prior.

The Overall Point being raised by the Commentary being that without the Engineers Interactions on Worlds where they USE the Sacrificial Rituals then there would be NO real Life as we know it, and Certainly NO Mankind.

The Effects we see with the Sacrificial Goo is that this Substance begins to infect every Molecular Cell of the Engineer, it Tears them apart, Breaks them down.. Hence we see DNA Strands become Infected and Turn Black and then they Tear/Break Apart.

It would be like looking at the Engineer being Made out of say Billions of Pieces of LEGO, so like he was a Massive Statue made from Billions of Pieces and what we are seeing is this LEGO STATUE is being Broken down back into Individual LEGO Pieces. 

This is WHERE it gets a bit Ambiguous...

Visually we see these Pieces enter the Water and begin to Rebuild, we see the DNA Strands start to Re-form... but we have to ASSUME this does not lead us to a Engineer being Re-Built.

From this we are then taken to showing Cells Splitting and Replicating...  so we would take this as the Engineers Building Blocks are Broken down and then these are then Reforming into the Basic Building Blocks of Life.

This is the ONE way to look at the Scene.... a way which would NOT Contradict the Fact the World had Basic Forms of Life by Virtue of the Green Algae we at least see on the World.

The other WAY is that by Virtue of this Green Algae, it is LIKELY that other Micro-Biological Life exists in the Water.  When taking into Account the Scene from Spaights Drafts, and then when we encounter those Scarabs again and what they do then, and compare that with the Sacrificial Goo and Black Goo effects, especially in Context to Lindeloffs Drafts.

Then it seems to indicate the GOO would break down a Organism and Form a Mutagen that Contains the Organisms DNA/Genomes and then this Mutagen would INFECT other Organic Matter and Infect/Pass on the DNA/Traits of the Organism the GOO had Broken down/Consumed.

So we could Speculate that this indicated the Sacrificial Scene showed the GOO was the Catalyst to Merge the Engineers DNA with Basic Life to Kick Start the Process of Complex Life Evolution.

So its a Evolutionary/Hybrid Tool/Pathogen.

so we are LEFT with TWO possible Explanations.

1) It is a Event that via the Engineers Building Blocks (Molecular Structure) that the Basic Building Blocks of LIFE had Formed from.

2) It is a Event where the Broken Down Building Blocks of the Engineer become a Pathogen that Passes on his DNA to Evolve Basic Life that is on a World... a Catalyst of Evolution.

I think which it is, is NOT so important to the Purpose as far as showing the Sacrificial Scene in Relation to HOW we came about.

Its only looking at the Effects of the Urns where taking a Certain Look at how the Sacrificial Goo worked that Complicates things, where as the other View makes Further Sense.

R.I.P Sox  01/01/2006 - 11/10/2017

Michelle Johnston

Sep-23-2019 11:37 AM

BigDave

Sep-17-2019 8:32 AM

 

I promised to listen to the commentary which covers the prologue of the movie on my return home.

Jon and Damon make references to their original ideas which they acknowledge have been amended but the message is simple and all three are in agreement. This scene involves the seeding of life on a planet which at that stage had basic plant life e.g. lichens. Ridley is the one that emphasises it may not necessarily be earth. He was the one that chose the disc shaped craft and placed the event millions of years ago. 

However his most interesting comment is when he begins talking about the name of the film. He poses the question then, if they made us who made them.

It is as clear as day we were made by Promethean Engineers but who made them. It is then very easy by intelligent deduction to work out that the Promethean Engineers stole the technology, a point that Ridley made in an IV given at the films launch which I shared on this forum a year ago. 

Right at the top of the commentary he is introducing a hierarchy and suggesting that the Gods that made us were Promethean.

For those reading who would say you should not have to read associated material. Damon counters this by indicating that there is more to be gained by diving in and having to think for oneself. Also to keep the Engineers mysterious at this stage made sense in their view. 

What the film was intending to do was make people hungry for the answers, what they got was no answer but the monster and the mad robot.

I do not intend to go through every section of the movie to make my point that if you look at the visual symbolism and themes and then dismiss what it cannot mean you are left with a clear idea of what it does mean. 

Mankind were made by dark angels who stole creative knowledge and the latter perished for their troubles. The rites of this mythos are bound up with intervention by sacrifice and hosting. The dark angels carried out experiments which lead to their own vision including a minor tributary the creature that emerged from Kane. 

What is missing from the film is what their makers thought of them and how does this notion of sacrifice and hosting work in a non Promethean set up where the use of creative knowledge is sanctioned within the rules of the mythos. 

Thats me done. 

 

 

 

BigDave

Sep-23-2019 2:44 PM

@Michelle

Thats a Nice Summary and Good Points

It was Interesting to WHY they changed what would have been more a Juggernaught to the Disc/Pebble Shape, as it indicated maybe prior that the Juggernaught would Function a Seeding Function, but they could also have Multiple Uses.   While they never mentioned this, having TWO different Styles that Reflect a Creation Event, and another a Destruction Event maybe featured into another reason for that Change, we can only Speculate.

The Stolen Technology Aspect is something that can be Considered, certainly Wayne Haag had made a Conclusion that he felt those Engineers had STOLEN their Technology and so its a case of WHERE and from WHO?

The Plot is always something thats Changing and Evolving right from the Conception of Alien 01 The Master Narrative to what little Background they have intended with Alien Covenant.

By that i think its interesting to Speculate about these Hall of Heads, Superior Beings, Apostles and Hierarchy

It seems Unlikely we would cover such Depth about our Engineers, which had so much Potential with Prometheus, its likely that any sequel to AC would only introduce us to those Angry Military Types from LV-223 who Stumble Upon and Fall Foul to Davids Creation....

So we may get NO further Insight into the Engineers apart from as much Detail about them as the Hybrid Predator was in The Predator...

There Potentially was Layers to the Creator/Creation Cake that it looks like we would not be seeing... it very much seems like " the monster and the mad robot" and only how this leads to LV-426 that could be all that they are interested in NOW...

Which is a Real Shame.

Regarding the Choice to keep a Lot of Mystery, i think it was the RIGHT WAY to go, if we had the Elders Scene and Dialog, it would mean we get the Revelation that these Elders as Frail as they are, were the Last of their Generation and they had to result to other means to Procreate their other Generations.

Leaving it out.... then we have that Mystery about IF there is and WHO there is, as far as above those Engineers.  Keeping the Mystery also gives us something to TALK about, allows them to Gauge our Reaction and allows more Freedom to go and either STICK with the Background they had at the Time of Shooting and Prior, or they can Change it and Expand on that Mystery.

Those Mysteries also act as something to get us to want to go and see a Sequel for Answers..

R.I.P Sox  01/01/2006 - 11/10/2017

BigDave

Sep-23-2019 2:56 PM

"However his most interesting comment is when he begins talking about the name of the film."

I thought that was a Interesting part of the Commentary as it indicates that the Prometheus Moniker was not Part of the Process of the to a great Degree until a Certain Point.

Its only Mention in the Earlier Drafts being in Spaights just ONCE... so the Stealing of Technology Theme did-not seem too Prevalent in the Drafts. But none the less we can see they kind of was a Promethean Tale but not really more Prominent than other Mythos/Religions connections.  So i think as they set out to Shoot the Movie, the Promethean Theme became more Prominent in their Intentions.

CARGO BAY 

The crew - Brick, Glasse, Stillwell, Downs, and Kamarov - sit 
on crates in an improvised lecture hall. Holloway and Watts 
in front of them. Janek at the back of the room. 

A hologram shows ancient images of divine visitations. The 
crew is visibly spooked. 

DOWNS 

Aliens . 

GLASSE 
You shitting me? 

Stillwell is staring at the frightening images: gods and 
titans towering over mortals . 

HOLLOWAY 

I think all our mythologies are race- 
memories of the Engineers . Horus the 
Sun God. Prometheus bringing fire from 
heaven. A pillar of fire, a pillar of 
smoke. The Engineers are the gods. 

R.I.P Sox  01/01/2006 - 11/10/2017

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