I sat down to a special Blu-ray screening of Prometheus this evening (4th time, and I love it, so there). But the major surprise was the airing of the film’s alternate opening and closing scenes. We were shown the opener first and the alternate ending after final credits. So thanks to the dudes at Fox and Substance PR for inviting me along. They possibly know I’m a ‘proper geek’ for Ridley Scott’s flick.
The alternate opening scene:
We’ve seen stills before now featuring more engineers by the side of the giant waterfall and what we get is pretty much that. Yeah, not much to write home about. However, it does provide a sort of religious context to proceedings whereas in the theatrical cut it feels more like one engineer on a mission left behind to fulfil his destiny. The scene plays out almost virtually the same with a few new shots and edits. For example, we get a reverse shot of the lake so that now we move backwards over it rather than forwards and when the cells are mutating in the water they don’t turn red and such. There’s no slowly realised title either. Like I said, it was pretty much the same besides a few more robed figures and a gnarly pull out from the engineer’s brain before he falls into the waterfall.
The alternate closing scene:
The closing moments definitely needed a reshoot. (So thank Christ they did.) It’s again pretty much the same but David tells Elizabeth a bit more about the engineers’ home planet. Shaw demands to know what David asked the engineer before he ripped off his neck and might well have shit down his neck if he wasn’t pressed for time. The robot reveals a short exchange centred on where the engineers came from and David then says: “There is no direct translation but some of your native cultures have a word for it … Paradise”. Elizabeth also drops an F bomb delivering an alternate reading line of “That’s because you’re a FUCKING robot”. There are also shots of Elizabeth getting into her buggy and driving it to the recently crashed alien spacecraft. The scene does play a bit more (unintentionally) cheesy pie than what we get in the theatrical cut. Shaw saying to her decapitated pal “Take me to Paradise” sounds a bit robo-sexual. Surely it would have killed the flick if it had stayed in? Also David reveals to Shaw that there are “many” spacecrafts and “I can operate them”. David is very certain about things and less hesitant than in the cut released. This should be clear, anyway, from the film given the landing strip looks exactly like … a landing strip with several temple structures off in the distance. It’s also again unintentionally funny because David isn’t keen on being placed inside the bag when Shaw and he take off for their new spaceship. He mutters disapprovingly and it is rather lame stuff.
One can see why Scott chose to re-shoot both the opener and closer. There’s a slight but important contextual shift with the idea what is taking place has some overt religious ceremony and the last scene really is unexpectedly naff.
Prometheus is released on Blu-ray, Blu-ray 3D and DVD on 8th October.