söndag 4 november 2018

The Predator

There is a saying in Sweden that goes something like this :- Har du inte upplevt första Rovdjuret, vet du inte vad äkta kärlek är. In translation this means :- If you have not experienced the first Predator, you don´t know what true love is. And this is actually true. There are probably 300.000 Swedish couples out there, who fell in love the first time they watched Predator from 1987. I would not be surprised if this is the film that makes Swedish couples more horny than anything on TV. And it is not hard to understand why. Predator will always be one of the greatest action movies of the 80´s, and is still so damn good even today. How many action films can manage to be that good for over 30 years ? There are some of course, but Predator clearly is one of the few that keeps going strong. What makes Predator such a great action film is that director John McTiernan knew how to combine action and Science fiction in an effective way. Most of all i have to say that the military team also made this film unique, with some of the most iconic military characters in cinema history. The design of the alien Predator looks really good as well in this film, and is still one of the most classic alien characters in cinema history. Predator is a must own on Blu Ray, and should be the movie everyone watch on Christmas Eve with family, because this is one of the few movies that captures the true meaning of Christmas. The sequel Predator 2 may not have done well at the box office, or with movie critics back in 1990, but i enjoy this film for several reasons. As an action film i have to say Predator 2 manage to deliver a lot of great action scenes with great characters. Danny Glover as the lead character Lieutenant Mike Harrigan may not be on the same level as Schwarzenegger, but does a great job anyway. Since Predator 2 was considered a flop, we did not see any Predator films for a very long time. Not until the year of 2004, when director Paul W.S. Anderson made Alien vs. Predator, a film that combined the franchises of both Predator and Alien. I would not say this is a really good film in any way, but for fans of both genres, this was entertaining for different reasons. And we got to see legendary actor Lance Henriksen as Charles Bishop Weyland. A sequel was released in 2007 known as Alien vs. Predator: Requiem, a sequel that may be the most hated by fans of both genres. But in 2010, director Nimród Antal released the next chapter of the Predator franchise, known as Predators. I actually really enjoy this film, and i still think this is a worthy sequel to the classic films. When i heard that director Shane Black ( who was in the original Predator movie ) was going to direct the latest Predator movie i was excited. And the trailer seemed to have some classic elements to offer. Is this the best sequel in the franchise for a long time, or is this a sequel we did not need to experience at all ?

A Predator ship crash-lands on Earth. Army sniper Quinn McKenna ( Boyd Holbrook ) and his team are attacked by the Predator on a hostage retrieval mission. McKenna capture the Predator and have his armor mailed off. Government agent  Will Traeger ( Sterling K. Brown ) take the Predator to a lab for experimentation and observation, recruiting evolutionary biologist Casey Brackett ( Olivia Munn ) to study the Predator. It all ends with the Predator manage to escape the laboratory, and killing many people. Quinn is on board a bus with government captives including ex-Marine Gaylord " Nebraska " Williams ( Trevante Rhodes ), military veterans Coyle ( Keegan-Michael Key ) Baxley ( Thomas Jane ), helicopter pilot Augusto Aguilera ) and Lynch ( Alfie Allen ). They all prepare to take down the Predator, but things may not be as easy as it seems.....

I had hope for this film, hoping it would continue the legacy of the Predator franchise. But to be honest, this film does not take the source material seriously. What especially makes this film fail is the comedy scenes. Listen director Shane Black, i know there were some jokes on the original Predator film, but those jokes landed. In this film it does not work. The jokes are just a fill in for missing parts, where it should have been filled with lots of action and gory scenes. Don´t get me wrong though, there are a few action scenes where it seems that this could have been going in the right direction. But for some reason, director Shane Black mix it all up with so many things that it becomes a mess. The autistic kid, that manage to send signals to space, is an odd choice for a film like this. My criticism has nothing to do with the autistic child, but why you would place him in a film like this? Kids can be cool in certain films, but i am not sure if this is a good idea for a Predator film. Now to the positive parts of the film. The female character Casey Bracket, played by actress Olivia Munn, is actually one of the few characters i enjoy in this film. I think she should have been given a much more bigger role, since she is more interesting than most of the male characters. Boyd Holbrook as the team leader Quinn McKenna is one of the few male characters that works in the hunting team. In the original Predator movie, the whole military team had great characters. But that is something we miss in this film, and it should have been here, considering that we follow a team of soldiers. So Boyd actually is the character that works best in this team. Some of the action scenes looks ok, especially when you see the Predator killing and fighting. But there are a few details that bugged me. Why would he pick up a machine gun and kill with, when the original Predator killed with other weapons in the first film ? Another scene when the Predator grabs a ripped off arm, and give the driver thumbs up, was that supposed to be funny ?`The comedy scenes don´t belong in a film like this, honestly. Director Shane Black was in the original Predator film as soldier Hawkins, and that is an iconic character for the classic film. He also directed 3 great films, Kiss Kiss Bang Bang, Iron Man 3 and The Nice Guys. I can understand why he wanted to make The Predator, since he was a part of the original film, but i feel that he might have had too many ideas for this film. If he only could have focused on making this film closer to the original Predator film, with a more serious tone, this could have been a good sequel. I also feel that he may have lost the true heart with the Predator tone, mixing in too many other elements. The Predator is not a good film, and not a disaster either. Only watch this film if you are a fan of the franchise, otherwise watch Predator or Predator 2 instead.

Rating: DD

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