“These Open-Ended Stories”: Damon Lindelof Glosses Over The Real ‘Prometheus’ Criticisms

By  · Published on August 4th, 2012

Simply put, Prometheus is the most divisive film of the summer. The Internet’s anticipation had been at an all-time high for years leading up to its release, so when the film didn’t end up being “the greatest thing ever!” more than a few people came away disappointed. From a wonky third act to a few head-scratching character decisions, much of the film’s problems were laid upon co-writer Damon Lindelof’s Twitter feed. In terms of what didn’t work, many labeled the movie “Lostian.” Now, Lindelof is discussing those issues and critics, with the exception of the ones that actually matter.

There’s been some legitimate criticisms made over Ridley Scott’s return to science fiction, but Lindelof doesn’t appear to be all that interested in discussing them…or perhaps no one has simply asked him about them yet. In an interview with the SpeakEasy blog at the Wall Street Journal, Lindelof (kind of) talked about the reception of Prometheus. Unfortunately, he never went beyond declaring the divisiveness a case of “I love ambiguity and you guys just, I dunno, don’t!” Even as a big fan of Prometheus who has no problems with the film’s ambiguity, Lindelof’s stance comes off mildly dismissive of the film’s biggest critics.

Lindelof only discussed the littlest of problems, a.k.a. the nitpicks, as a simple trait of the fanboy reception game, “My feeling is: this is what I signed up for. I am driven and captivated and interested in these open-ended stories that have a high level of interpretation to them. There’s a certain level of frustration that comes with that package. So, when I was involved in the movie just looking at tiny little effects, naming planets and star systems, you have to be responsible.”

Planets and star systems? Why not focus on or discuss having your God/creator act like nothing but a mindless brute? Or the problem with Elizabeth Shaw spelling out the main moral of the film at the very end? Or, hell, why one frightened nerdy scientist was so open to saying hello to that lethal alien? Aren’t those parts – logical character decisions, subtlety, etc. – a tiny bit more important than what you name your star system?

Lindelof is a self-aware guy, so it would be interesting seeing him discuss the real problems people have with the film than rather, say, people who just fire off angry tweets at him, “I am amused if somebody says something cleverly negative about it. The mean negatives, there is nothing pleasant about that experience whatsoever for me. I try to not address it unless it’s so horrible that I feel the need to tell everybody who follows me, ‘Just so you know, there are people out there who says this.’ If somebody says something positive it’s something I want to keep to myself.”

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Longtime FSR contributor Jack Giroux likes movies. He thinks they're swell.