Prospect (2018)

Director: Christopher Caldwell, Zeek Earl
Writer: Christopher Caldwell, Zeek Earl
Cast: Sophie Thatcher, Jay Duplass, Pedro Pascal, Sheila Vand, Andre Royo
Part of: /slash Filmfestival
Seen on: 22.9.2018

Cee (Sophie Thatcher) and her father (Jay Duplass) have been roaming space for a while, always looking for the next possibility to make a little money. Now they have a contract to mine for gems on a remote moon. Their mission is not without its dangers to start with, but it becomes even more complicated than they thought. They run into Ezra (Pedro Pascal) who is looking for the very same gems they are – a volatile situation, leaving Cee to make some tough choices.

Prospect was pretty good, but not great. Overall, it left me with a positive impression but it just didn’t make me entirely happy.

The film poster showing Pedro Pascal, Sophie Thatcher and Jay Duplass wearing spacesuits.

Sometimes with SciFi stories, you start wondering why a particular story is, in fact, SciFi at all. Instead of using the setting for the narrative, it becomes a colorful background for a story that migh as well happen in our world today. And that is fine, generally speaking. There is no obligation to use the setting in that way. But there is a particular thrill when a story understands the usefulness of its own setting – and Prospect definitely falls into the latter category.

While I appreciated that a lot, there were other things about the film that left me more dissatisfied. The pacing was generally pretty slow, which I did enjoy for the most part, but sometimes it just slowed down too much and then I wanted to kick it in the butt a little. Plus, the slow pace meant that I found myself wandering away from the plot, so to speak, and the plot just wasn’t strong enough to keep me interested all the way through at that pace.

Pedro Pascal and Sophie Thatcher in the film.

The characters were pretty nice and the central three made for an interesting constellation, but at the same time, it was basically pure daddy issue material and I’m just not that interested in daddy issues. They are not as compelling as most (male) film makers seem to think. Still, at least they were well-handled and with good performances, the characters were very grounded and engaging.

Visually the film was appealing, greener and more saturated than SciFi films tend to look, which is nice. But despite all of these good qualities, it just didn’t click with me or for me, it just didn’t move past fine.

Sophie Thatcher and Jay Duplass in the film.

Summarizing: good.

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