Foreboding Forethought

Sir Ridley Scott’s epic return to sci-fi is one of many solid films coming this summer:

For those of you who do not know Ridley Scott was the guy that was nice enough to make a movie about my younger days called GladiatorHe also did Alien, Blade Runner, Black Hawk Down, and American Gangster among others.  I personally am not a huge fan of stuff like Alien (Sci-fi thriller’sthey call them) but I have to admit that Prometheus looks pretty dope (it’s been called an Alien prequel).  Prometheus marks Sir Ridley Scott’s return to the genre he redefined.  The plot follows the crew of the spaceship Prometheus in the late 21st century, as they explore an advanced alien civilization in search of the origins of humanity.  What they find evidently is NOT daisies and lollipops.  Which is what I thought might initially be the case.  It’s not.  What is Prometheus REALLY about you ask?  A Rationals’ dark side.

“To make man more like the gods, Prometheus gave him fire: the symbol of light and energy.  In harnessing light and energy mankind gains control and understanding of nature.  To understand and control nature is to possess powers, and it is thatthe desire for powers—that sets the Promethean apart from others.” Please Understand Me p. 47

Prometheus is the Greek Titan God of Forethought, and the one who gave humans the gift of fire.  Doing so came at a cost however, as Zeus decided that Prometheus’ punishment for mettling in the affairs of mortals was to bind him to a rock while a great eagle ate his liver every day only to have it grow back to be eaten again the next day.  Prometheus’ noble sacrifice however was not for naught, as fire would catalyze mans eventual dominance over the elements.

Power fascinates the NT.  Not power over people, but power over nature.  To be able to understand, control, predict and explain realities.  Note that these are the four aims of science: control and understanding, prediction and explanation.”  — Please Understand Me p. 47

At some point during a Rationals’ life, he or she makes a sacrifice; similar to that of Prometheus’ sacrificeA pact, if you will: in hopes of achieving greatness.  A life-long goal that Rationals’ rarely achieve in their own eyes.

It is this relentless self-inflicted torment however that causes the Rationals, and thus humanity in general, to thrive.

“Somehow the Promethean never believes that he knows enough, or that he does what he does well enough.  And he adds to this discomfort by escalating his standards of  performance.  What may be accepted by him as satisfactory today may tomorrow be judged only as passable.  And the more extreme the NT, the more likely he is to increase his standards of performance to coincide with unusually good performances which occur now and then.  His ordinary performances are thus viewed as short of the mark, and the NT experiences a pervasive sense of inadequacy.  He intensifies his belief in his inadequacy by making unyielding demands on himself, taxing himself with constant improvement, holding a sort of mental stopwatch over himself, recording his gains and losses.  He must be wholly competent in his work and in his play, and he never gives himself respite from this self-imposed level of excellence.” Please Understand Me p. 50

Quote1.pngThe spirit of the NT is caught in the myth of Prometheus, the Greek God who created man from clay.  Disappointed in his lifeless sculpture, Prometheus enlisted the help of Minerva.  She carried him to heaven where he stole fire from the wheel of the sun.  Prometheus applied the stolen fire to the breast of man, giving him life.  Prometheus paid for this theft by being “nailed hard and fast in chains beneath the open sky” (Grant, p. 200).  A greedy vulture tore at his blackened liver all day, year in and year out.  And there was no end to the pain: every night, while Prometheus hung bound to the cliff, exposed to cruel frost and freezing winds, his liver grew whole again.  Prometheus rescued man from ignorance, even though he had to rob heaven to do so.  He proclaimed the doctrine of progress for man and secured the gifts of science and technology.Quote2.png Please Understand Me p. 57

UPDATE:

As part of Prometheus’ evidently strong viral marketing campaign here is a fictional TED talk given by Peter Wyland (Guy Pearce) about the Greek God Prometheus:

ALSO a pretty funny video about Michael Fassbender’s character being a cyborg:

Enjoy!

DOUBLE UPDATE:

check out this cool video featurette:

TRIPLE UPDATE:

new international trailer:

0 thoughts on “Foreboding Forethought”

  1. No Brian, but it might keep the seagulls in the bay. The Promethian thing sounds like something I would do. Problem is I am an INFP (sometimes an S and sometimes an E) so I would do that from the perspective of being “deliberately illogical”, what i think Poe would have called the Imp of the Perverse. And I have no idea what Greek model that makes me. But in the World of Trek that is Counselor Troi… oh wait she is Greek! (in real life) 🙂

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