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Engineer Portrait + Why I like Prometheus/Engineers

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Antares

May-21-2019 12:18 PM

 

Felt like casually practicing faces and do tribute art to the Engineers. That's basically it. :D

My unnecessary long essay thoughts on them and Prometheus:

Okay, this is going to be the old hat! Shaw and the Engineers were the best of Prometheus for me.

Keeping Shaw as protagonist would've carried on the tradition of the female lead in the Alien franchise. 

And Prometheus was like a thought experiment masterfully brought onto the screen. I forgive it's narrative flaws for it daring to touch this interesting big question of humanity. For daring to portray the "gods" as very very humanoid creatures without painting the universe as human-centric, without childishly simplifying this whole theme and erasing the wonder. That is a tough task to do! The Engineer looked baffled, confused, needs sleep, plays flute, sits down to fly a spaceship, dies - but the universe in Prometheus still felt vast, mysterious, empty and the Engineers still alien, complex and incomprehensably advanced. 

I loved the surprisingly simple design because it worked. Their look had references to the classical grey alien and was a good mix of familiarility and monstrosity. The black eyes that both look softly familiar and down-to-nature like an animal's and yet so soulless and hollow and dangerously intelligent. It could take your hand or erase you forever. So perfect for reading both human and alien aspects into them. They were muscular, but almost unpleasantly, and almost ugly in a beautiful way. (I mean people have a point with that they look like Greek statues + Handsome Squidward + Vin Diesel?) They had a dumb brute's appearance, but I could still buy it that they'd be smarter than any of us ever could be. Great ambiguity. 

On top of that I love them for their unconventional taste. Flying eery ships in excentric unsettling Space Jockey biosuits and seemingly having a very complex and dark relationship with nature. Their biotech: one could expect a close and harmonic relationship to nature and elfish green technology - we aim for that, right? None of that applies to them. Their eco is black, not green. I felt like their tech represents harmony with nature and equally an abomination of it. Giger gives them great depth. 


I also loved the tension of the communication in the film with "them". The human expressions of the Engineer had a kind of mundaneness to them making them realistic as thinking lifeform AND human precursor.

Also great: The portrayal of our vulnerability, of our hopes. The tragic fight of the specieses, the painful rejection. The disappointment. The question of defining godhood: what actually makes a god? Is life in the universe not a hierarchy of many different "gods", from plant to human? Why does humanity need and want gods? The revelation that the danger of Stockholm Syndrome is also a part of certain religious mindsets. The hidden moral that maybe humanity is doomed by it's paternal origins, that biologically damn them into seeking guidance instead of intellectual autonomy. 
The endless room for metaphors and connections to mythology, philosophy, abstract concepts, art. Great worldbuilding and space for films of all genres. 

 

... And now I don't even want to watch Covenant, because everything that I loved about Prometheus seems to have been killed and disenchanted by it. It seems to have narrowed down the universe to a few planets, to monsters and their evil mad scientist master, reduced humanoid aliens to a fantasy race in a boring roman city? And everything that was kept, were the dumb humans with bad decisions and the Hollywood appeal. What we needed was less Hollywood and less mainstream polished sci-fi designs that portray space travel like long train travel. Alien was awesome for me because sometimes I forgot it was all a stage designed by concept artists. I'm young and so I could imagine it happened somewhere in the for me distant 80s of an alternative Universe with real people. And space travel still had that overwhelming hostile aura!

And at last (as female viewer) I gotta admit that having a strong impressive female heroine dealing with dangerously attractive aliens and potentially overcoming her own and humanity's daddy issues is more interesting to me than David being a mad scientist with edgy pets killing soldiers? I may watch Covenant one day to figure out what philosophical aspects David carries, and Fassbender is a great actor. But him and Shaw, Engineers and Aliens would have equally made a worthy playground for any philosophical topic and action. 


Then again Prometheus 2 would have probably overexposed and humanised the Engineers just as well anyway... That's what I at least tell myself to deal with the bad turn. :'D If film makers had the balls and budget to declare films as non-canon... This topic has become redundant, I know, just wanted to write this off my chest and give the Engineers and Prometheus attempts some credit. :) 

 

1 Responses to Engineer Portrait + Why I like Prometheus/Engineers

BigDave

May-22-2019 3:21 PM

First of all i want to say Welcome and its nice to see People who saw Prometheus for more than just having to be about a Aggressive 7-8ft Humanoids intent on Killing Mankind with a Horrific Weapon....   I also think a Prometheus 2 had more scope and Dr Shaw while Flawed could have had some Revelations that could have Totally given her a new Story ARC.

"reduced humanoid aliens to a fantasy race in a boring roman city?"

There was a sense of Disappointment by many regarding the Aesthetic, the Engineers on Planet 4 looked more Human than Majestic as they did in Prometheus, and i am sure many expected to Discover a World with such Bio-Mechanical Technical and Architectural Wonders.

I dont really object to much to either, i had hoped we would be seeing more of the Engineers and their Worlds and would not mind a Mix of Ancient Civilization and the Space Jockey/Engineers Bio-Mechanical Civilization.

My main Concern was how these Engineers were  all killed off by the time the Covenant Ship arrived, and the Disappointment of the Movie does leave the possibility of ever exploring the Engineers beyond 8ft Aggressive Space Fairing Genocidal beings on a Warpath!  very unlikely.

I think it would be a Tragedy if the ONLY time we see our Engineers would be as shown in the Comics, where its deemed NOT important to go into DEPTH with them, but just show them going around with the Bio-Mechanical Technology and introduce some Bio-Mechanical Weapons and basically go around Killing Humans and Xenomorphs...

I think a little of this would be FINE... but for me the Engineers are more than just to be depicted as Flying Around Bombarding Worlds, and being Aggressive Jerks to everyone.

PS Thanks for the Portrait nice Work ;)

R.I.P Sox  01/01/2006 - 11/10/2017

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