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"Prometheus" very ambitious but frustrating

Movie review
By: Frank Miller, special to Gold Country Media
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?Prometheus? Directed by Ridley Scott Starring: Noomi Rapace, Michael Fassbender and Charlize Theron Rating: Three out of five stars ?Prometheus? very ambitious but frustrating Movie review By Frank Miller Special to The News Messenger It has been more than 30 years since director Ridley Scott gave us a sci-fi horror masterpiece that introduced audiences to a bloodthirsty, chest-bursting alien who terrorized the crew of an intergalactic mining vessel. Returning to the genre once again, Scott takes us back into the crushing darkness of space to tell a prequel to ?Alien? ? or does he? On the surface, ?Prometheus? shares very similar traits to Scott?s 1979 film but it plays on a tangent to the story you already know. After discovering cave drawings amongst ancient civilizations separated by centuries, scientists believe the drawings represent an invitation to a faraway planet. A research team mans an expedition aboard the ship Prometheus to discover answers about the origins of mankind. What they find isn?t what they expected, and once they reach the planet, it?s where the characters and the film itself begin to unravel. It?s an ambitious film filled with big ideas about the conflict between faith and science. But a cement-brained script, loaded with clunky dialogue and characters who make every bad decision possible, ultimately keep it from being a classic. What makes it so frustrating is that the film is a sumptuous wonder to behold. Scott drapes his frame with loving detail and uses the 3D effect to its absolute capacity. Technically speaking, ?Prometheus? is a peerless visual dynamo. There are scenes of genuine terror that evoke ?Alien? and Michael Fassbender is the standout cast member, playing the ambiguously motivated android David. Even Scott seems invigorated by a return to the genre that made him famous. However, ?Prometheus? is far removed from the glory of his early work and only serves as a reminder of the incredible foundation Scott laid early in his career. While ?Alien? serves as the crown jewel of Scott?s resume, ?Prometheus? is his cubic zirconia. It?s a visually striking copy that doesn?t hold nearly the same value. Frank Miller is a Sacramento writer.