I saw Prometheus earlier today and, well, it just doesn't work. Some of it does, little pieces here and there, but as a cohesive whole...it's a noble attempt but still a failure. There's a lot of goofy plot stuff (which you can read about in the pro reviews) but the main reason why it doesn't work, I think, is that you can't tell if it's just vague or undeveloped as an idea.
I'm actually glad I read every spoiler I could because if I didn't, it might have been a little confusing. Hell, even with all the spoilers, it's confusing. Things are intentionally left unexplained, other key facts are only hinted at.
Much has been made of the black goo, and for good reason. What the hell is that shit? Some kind of magic liquid. Close-ups showing moving sparkles hint that maybe it's nanomachines or something in the goo. And what is it for? Well...that depends.
It could be used to create DNA on a barren planet, as you see in the first scene. Or it could make your eyeball do weird things and make your veins go black. It could turn a worm into a penis-snake. It can turn a jerk scientist into a mutant. It can be transmitted sexually. I suppose it could probably do whatever was needed for the plot at that moment.
Apparently the aliens are intending on bringing it back to earth to wipe out mankind, but something happened at their base and they were all killed. Don't ask me what, because I don't know. You see some holographic projections of them running around, but you don't know what's happening.
They're weird people, these Engineers. They create mankind, keep coming back to check on us, telling us about these star maps, which people then draw on cave walls. But they also wear these suits (the Space Jockey suits from Alien) and fly their ships with flutes. Why do they tell us to come to their black goo factory?
I dunno. I thought they were going to bring the black goo to us.
But at any rate, all this is just the backstory for a dumb horror movie plot where the characters do dumb, inscrutable things. If they weren't so dumb, there would be no movie. The rich billionaire financing the project because he wants to live forever? Dumb. His spoiled daughter heading up the expedition? Dumb. Bringing the archaeologists along? Dumb. Programming the android to mess around with the black goo? Dumb. Reaching out to touch the penis-snake? Dumb.
Like I said, I'm not sure if this movie is just vague or undeveloped, but I'm kinda leaning towards undeveloped.