THE PREDATOR Bleeds, We Need To Kill It

I am nearly in tears reading Kernel Blake’s review of the new Predator movie, aptly named THE PREDATOR. I had so many high hopes for this movie, I mean seriously how is that they cannot make a decent Predator or Alien movie? WTF HOLLYWOOD? You’re all fired!! Urggghhhhh – read Blake’s thoughts, then apparently watch the original again. THE PREDATOR is out today from 20th Century Fox, it rated MA15+ and runs for 107mins. This is what Blake really thinks…..lol. Enjoy his review…..Salty.

 

Kernel Blake Currall at The Predator Release
Kernel Blake Currall at The Predator Release

 

BY BLAKE CURRALL

The Predator franchise has come around full circle. The man with the honour of being the first person killed on screen by the iconic camouflaged space lizard, is now the writer and director of the latest installment, THE PREDATOR. Yes, , the screenwriting legend of LETHAL WEAPON and THE LAST BOY SCOUT and director of IRON MAN 3 and KISS KISS BANG BANG, is back to reinvigorate the Predator series that hasn’t had a good film since the 1987 original.

 

The Predator Movie image
The Predator

 

THE STORY:

THE PREDATOR opens, much like the classic original, in space. A small space ship is under attack from a larger vessel before fleeing to Earth and crash landing in an unspecified location. At the same time, US Army sniper Quinn McKenna (, NARCOS) is on a mission to take out some drug cartel members with his team, when he sees the alien ship crash into the nearby jungle.

Upon investigating the crash, McKenna finds some crazy alien tech and comes face to mandible-face with our now familiar trophy hunter, who promptly dismantles McKenna’s team before Quinn can find a way to escape. McKenna proceeds to post his alien tech discovery home, to use as proof of his encounter, before being captured and used as a patsy for the death of his teammates, by a shady government organisation, who have known of the Predator’s Earthly hunting visits for decades.

This same organisation, going by the name Project Stargazer and headed by wisecracking hardass Traeger (Sterling K Brown), managed to recover the downed Predator and with the help of ’s biologist Casey Brackett, soon discover it has a mixture of human DNA in its blood. THE PREDATOR has evolved it would seem.

 

The Predator Trevante Rhodes, Olivia Munn and Boyd Holbrook image
The Predator , Olivia Munn and Boyd Holbrook image

 

THE PREDATOR doesn’t hold back with the viscera….

The package of alien technology sent home by Quinn ends up in the hands of his autistic son, Rory (, ROOM) who, within a matter of minutes, manages to crack the Predator language and manages to simultaneously awaken the captured Predator as well as send out a beacon to the other Predator giving chase at the start of the film.

All hell breaks loose when the captured Predator flexes its muscles and tears apart a large majority of the Stargazer team in surprisingly gory fashion, THE PREDATOR doesn’t hold back with the viscera. Coincidentally, the now detained Quinn has been thrown in with a ragtag group of former soldiers all paying for various military transgressions. Each with their own quirky characteristics, including some slight rehashes of characters from the original PREDATOR, the new team quickly bond and team up to take down the alien beast and save Quinn’s son from the incoming threat, looking to retrieve its stolen gear.

From here THE PREDATOR introduces us to the Mega-Predator, an 11 foot tall version of the alien hunter with a few extra tricks up its sleeve. Oh, and some Predator dogs. Around this time is where THE PREDATOR goes from being somewhat enjoyable, with some very funny moments, to downright laughably bad and very obviously butchered in the editing room, thanks to massive reshoot of the final act. Imagine what the last half was like before.

 

The Predator Olivia Munn and Boyd Holbrook image
The Predator Olivia Munn and Boyd Holbrook image

 

THE CREW:

Holbrook does a fine job as the world weary sniper out to save his family, with some great lines and moments with his autistic son. The various members of his new squad have varying degrees of success with their characters, Keenan-Michael Key as the joker, PTSD suffering soldier, and as the profanity sprouting Tourette’s sufferer have some very funny moments together. , as the light fingered Lynch, basically disappears with no explanation for a lot of the film and Munn, setup as a major player, fizzles out to nothing more than a gun toting side note by the end of the film.

Shane Black made his name in the 80s with his sharp witted and funny scripts, basically inventing the buddy cop genre. It’s a real shame that his script work here is severely lacking. Apart from a few glimpses of Black’s wit and humour spread throughout the film, the characters are pretty much one note and some forgotten about entirely. You don’t really care about them the way you did with Arnie’s crew in the far superior original film. That wouldn’t be so bad, but THE PREDATOR goes out of its way at times to shoehorn in lines and gags from the original that just makes you wish you were watching that instead.

The action beats are incredibly violent and mostly fine, initially, but an over reliance on CGI and some horrendous editing in the final third of THE PREDATOR make for confusing and hard to follow action. A laughably terrible final scene is so obviously tacked on to set up a sequel, the reshoot are plainly obvious with Holbrook hiding a completely different hairstyle under his hat and a reveal that made me audibly groan.

 

The Predator Olivia Munn image
Olivia Munn

 

IN CONCLUSION:

The first Predator is one of the best action films of all time, John McTiernan directed a tense, thrilling, humorous, sci-fi action classic that could be re-released today and still feel modern and fresh, with lines that people are still quoting over thirty years later. THE PREDATOR has none of that, its behind PREDATOR and PREDATOR 2, but better than the abysmal ALIEN vs PREDATOR films, which isn’t saying much. It shows promise early but throws it all away in a truly terrible last act filled with so many plot holes and convenient moments, you start to wonder if Shane Black is suited to directing these big films.

This franchise bleeds, we need to kill it.

 

 

 

YOUR REVIEWER:

Kernel Blake is a part-time beard bandit, philanthropist, industrialist….bicyclist…photographer, world traveller, movie lover, a man of few words who enjoys the finer things in life. Like reciting Snake Plissken quotes. And when all that fails, heads out to a racetrack to do skids. He can be found twatting @bcurrall80 and hipstergramming @bcurrall80

** All images courtesy of various sources on Google or direct from the distributor/publisher – credit has been given to photographers where known – images will be removed on request.