by Steve Dollar
Who isn't a sucker for a good outer-space yarn? Thirty-three summers ago, Ridley Scott
chomped through the guts of that candy-ass Star Wars
crap and unleashed Alien
on the shrieking matinee masses. It was like a Sam Fuller
war movie crammed in a tin can, a vessel simultaneously erupting with Cronenbergian
body horror, externalized in the creepy-erotic majesty of H.R. Giger's design, and cannily importing a decade of splatterific outrage from the grindhouses and drive-ins to the budding twin cinemas of middle America. All that, and Sigourney Weaver
âthe Final Girl to end all Final Girlsâhanging tough in her iconic panties, and a cat named Jones.
James Cameron upped the ante with Aliens
, and Scott never looked back. Until now. The promise of Prometheus
has had fanboys and girls in a steaming lather all year. And not undeservedly. The director hasn't done sci-fi since 1982's Blade Runner
, and the digital revolution now offers the technology to imagine things on a movie screen that really do look futuristic. Ironically, perhaps, the film is a prequel to Alien
, or rather presented as part of the Alien
origin myth that can now progress as its own franchise. The razzle-dazzle CGI deployed suggests technological advancements that far exceed anything at hand in the quartet
movies, a paradox we'll have to live with.
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