Posts Tagged ‘Alien’

Confessions of a lifelong fraidy-cat; or, Why I (mostly) can’t abide horror films

May 15, 2017

By Matthew E. Milliken
MEMwrites.wordpress.com
May 15, 2017

When I was a child, I would sometimes glimpse horror films on television. These brief exposures inevitably made my pulse race and usually left me terrified, regardless of whether the scene showed someone being harmed or even threatened.

Once when I was 10 years old, my family and I attended a family gathering at my Great-Uncle Paul and Great-Aunt Jesse’s apartment in Queens. (Or maybe I was 8 or 13. Who knows?) The apartment’s combined living room and dining room was full of people. But one moment, when I happened to be facing the TV, I saw something that made me feel completely alone and utterly vulnerable.

There was some old 1960s movie on; I remember it being in color, although I couldn’t even tell you if the scene I saw involved a Frankenstein’s monster coming to life or a vampiric woman awakening. In fact, I’m not even sure if the sound was on or off. But just watching a few seconds of this production frightened me to the core. I think one of my parents — my mother? — noticed that I was petrified and steered my attention somewhere else, or perhaps got someone to change the channel.

It’s a weird childhood trauma to remember, if trauma is indeed the right word for such a minor ordeal. And yet thinking back on that moment — muddled though my recall of it might be — I get terrified all over again.

Read the rest of this entry »

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Another glorious Ridley Scott mess

June 25, 2012

So I’ve seen Prometheus, the new Ridley Scott movie. Summing up: What a glorious mess.

The setup is intriguing. About 80 years from now, archaeologists Charlie Holloway (Logan Marshall-Green) and Elizabeth Shaw (Noomi Rapace) discover evidence that an alien race which they call the Engineers created humanity.

More accurately, they have found what appear to be star maps in artifacts from ancient human civilizations scattered across very different places and times, meaning that these cultures never had contact. The leap of faith — one of many — that this professional and personal couple make is that aliens are our makers. Corporate honcho Peter Weylanda (a heavily made up Guy Pearce) buys into this theory and dispatches a scientific expedition led by Shaw and Holloway aboard the eponymous starship to what they believe is the Engineers’ point of origin.

Prometheus is helmed by Captain Janek (Idris Elba) but under the nominal control of icy corporate bureaucrat Meredith Vickers (Charlize Theron). Further muddying the lines of command are the actions of David, an incredibly intelligent and very meticulous android who answers to a mysterious authority. The identity and motives of David’s true master constitute something of a third-act revelation — although anyone who’s paying attention should be able to identify the person lurking behind the curtain well in advance. Read the rest of this entry »

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