The script by Jon Spaihts and Damon Lindelof piles on more baggage in the form of Shaw's religious beliefs, presented as forcefully and clumsily as an airport Hare Krishna circle, and a just-for-the-heck-of-it billionaire seeking immortality subplot. When Holloway and Shaw reveal the reason for their deep-space voyage to the crew, she explains the evidence why the moon is the home of humanity's creators.
"Because I choose to believe it."
Unless, you're the Pope, that's the moment to turn around, program the ship for the return voyage, and climb back into your cryo-chamber for a nice sleep. But even this Chariots of the Yobs philosophizing does not sink "Prometheus." The initial exploration of the planet below revives interest, and again, the scenery is impressive.
But with all the spaceballs it already has in the air, "Prometheus" now tries to work in more references that set up the original "Aliens," a smart creature-feature that stood on its own, as well as its subsequent iterations. For some reason, Ridley Scott thinks he has a lot of 'splaining to do.
In the tradition of the Sigourney Weaver's Ripley, to say nothing of Lisbeth Salander, Rapace's Dr. Shaw makes for a rousing heroine, one who takes a licking but keeps on ticking. I would certainly pay money to see Noomi Rapace again, but preferably in more down-to-earth circumstances.
Dr. Shaw is stumbling through an overly complicated story. Like her character, "Prometheus" has trouble staying out of its own way. It has speculative philosophical elements, cosmic exploration elements, personal development elements, and business conspiracy elements. But even when "Prometheus" adds fire, the mixture of elements remains strangely inert. Despite its potential, it meekly goes where many, many movies have already been and gone.