By Mikhail Chernyavsky

In 1979, “Alien” gave new life to claustrophobia and abdominal pains as the crew of the Nostromo was hunted down and killed by a mysterious alien with acidic blood coursing through its veins.

Three decades later, the crew of the Prometheus seeks out the origins of man’s creation and existence, when they stumble upon the source of a black death that would come to plague both ships.

“Prometheus” is Ridley Scott’s return to the franchise since the first film, and feels right for him to be the one giving it a new beginning.

Scott has said that “Prometheus” is not so much a prequel but a film that takes place prior to “Alien.” But even if you’re not familiar with the franchise, this is an enjoyable, solid film that stands on its own.

Visually, this film is stunning. Scott’s cinematography does a wonderful job of capturing the fear and suspense of every scene, from the fearful lurking in the darkness of rusted caverns in search of life on a new planet to the quick slithers of a snake-like alien slowly rising as it reveals itself to crewmembers.

It’s not just suspense that keeps your interest piqued, but genuine curiosity as the team of explorers finds more clues to mankind’s beginnings.

Sure, some of the general science fiction clichés pop up: monoculture aliens, the “I didn’t sign up for this” character who has a horrific death, and of course, the classic “I discovered new technology, so now I will play God” character. Even though those are present, Scott still makes them entertaining through character arcs that expose the actions that lead up to evolution of the alien we know today.

The only real downside of the film is the lack of aliens. It’s not entirely disappointing though, since this is a film about origins. And, the alien scenes we are given are full of quality action and just enough gore to make you cringe, but not fully cover your eyes.

With a stellar cast starring Noomi Rapace (“The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo” Swedish version), Michael Fassbender, (“X-Men: First Class”) Charlize Theron (“Snow White and the Huntsman”) and visually striking scenes, Scott proves that science fiction films can be more than just visually stunning but can still tell a great story.

Check out “Mark @ The Movies” as Mark S. Allen geeks out over the film.

Bonus: Prometheus TED Clip

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