Oh, so THAT'S what 'Prometheus' is about!

Reported by: James Eppler
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Updated: 6/12/2012 1:47 pm

On Twitter: @JamesEppler

I wasn't a big fan of "Prometheus," but not because the ideas contained therein aren't interesting. On the contrary, in my review I noted I found some of the concepts interesting, but didn't think the film portrayed or explained them very well.

That's why there's been so much online chortling about exactly what happened in the film and why.

Director Ridley Scott recently revealed one interesting tidbit. It's included in this story on WorstPreviews.

SPOILERS AHEAD

Apparently, this whole mess happened because "The Engineers" aren't at all happy with what humanity did to Jesus a couple thousand years ago, who was also apparently an alien.

Seriously.

In answering the question about why these Engineers would want to destroy or punish the humans they created, Scott says:

"If you look at it as an 'our children are misbehaving down there' scenario, there are moments where it looks like we've gone out of control, running around with armor and skirts, which of course would be the Roman Empire. And they were given a long run. A thousand years before their disintegration actually started to happen. And you can say, 'Let's send down one more of our emissaries to see if he can stop it.' Guess what? They crucified him."

To my eyes, the film on its own comes nowhere close to indicating that's what is really going on here. It does address the idea of religion as the central character is a woman of faith. At one point she says, "it's just what I choose to believe," which would appear to fly in the face of her colleagues' scientific approach to the matter.

But to my memory, the film never mentions a crucifixion other than the cross necklace Noomi Rapace's character wears.

Of course that begs the question, if Jesus was an Engineer, who are the others? Is it like that "South Park" episode with the Super Best Friends?

Look - I'm not saying artists and their work need to spell everything out for us or water down complex ideas for mass consumption. But on some level a piece of work should speak for itself. We shouldn't always have to depend on further explanations.

Personally, I think the character of David (Michael Fassbender) raises far more interesting questions about the human condition that much of the mythology at work in the film. And the film gives us plenty of material to work with on that subject.

That said, it's admirable that "Prometheus" is a big-budget summer movie that actually merits discussion like this, even if I roll my eyes at it a bit.

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