ALIEN VS PREDATOR 2:REQUIEM
General Release 2007
94 minutes approx
Directed by -
Colin and Greg Strause
Written by -
In orbit around the Earth, a Predator alien ship gets into trouble when an alien parasite burst out of its chest. This creature grows quickly to adulthood and kills the rest of the crew, causing the ship to tumble out of control onto the planet near to a small earth city. The alien eggs on board hatch and release alien facehuggers that then proceed to impregnate hunters and tramps before the hybrid predator/alien finds a way of using pregnant women in the hospital to serve as nests for multiple alien births. On the home planet of the Predators, a single one gets the message as to what has happened and descends to Earth in order to stop the infestation no matter what the cost. A small group of humans are caught in the crossfire as they struggle to survive.
ALIEN vs PREDATOR was not hailed as a great acheivement when it appeared, pitting a small group of Aliens against a small group of Predators in the confined spaces of an ancient pyramid beneath the Antarctic ice cap. Despite this, it made a good deal of money. As a result we have ALIEN vs PREDATOR:REQUIEM (hereafter known as AvP2).
First the good news. If you like blood then there is plenty to be had in this new chapter of the franchise. The film is director by two brothers (credited as the Brothers Strause) who have been working on the special effects for Alien films from long before the Predator franchise moved in. As a result, they are familiar with their beasties and know how to throw the red stuff around. In fact, they seem to have an unending supply of the stuff. As a result we have arms dropping off, heads being splattered, people being impaled to walls and the aforementioned sequence in which the alien/predator hybrid uses the pregnancy ward as incubators for an army of warriors which is particularly sticky and squirm-inducing. Also, the cast is peopled with a couple of familiar faces, but no stars and so any can (and does) get killed. There is absolutely no telling who is going to survive.
Unfortunately, the characters are somewhat stereotyped and there is not enough introduction to them to make us care very much whether they live or die. Neither do we care very much about the Predator. It descends to Earth in order to sort out the problem and quite happily goes around killing everything that gets in its way, but never connects with the humans (other than using them as bait) and so never develops a personality that we can either appreciate of hate. The Alien/Predator hybrid at least has a plan of sorts. That plan involves an awful lot of soldier aliens and that is a problem with the story. There are eggs in the crashing spaceship to make the first two soldiers and the hybrid can make multiple ones using human females, but where the constant supply of unending warriors comes from is anyone's guess. They also grow with a speed that is inconsistent with the rest of the franchise. The hybrid alien bursts out the dead Predator on the Predator ship and yet is fully grown enough to take out the rest of the crew as a fully grown adult before anyone can even notice. There is no explanation as to how the aliens can grow so quickly, the problem being ignored to just get the screen full of them.
The action, and there is plenty of it, is gritty and realistic (with all that blood), but much of it happens in dark places or in the pouring rain and so half of the time it is difficult to see who is doing what to whom. It is, however, fast and frenetic and is likely to keep fans of the franchise happy. In the end, what we have is a small group of survivors battling their way through an army of monsters for survival. Replace the aliens with zombies and you have PLANET TERROR (without the bonkers humour) or vampires and you have 30 DAYS OF NIGHT and I'm not sure that this improves on either of those.
One thing is for sure, however, and that is that you won't be sleeping through it and it certainly does enough to make sure that ALIEN vs PREDATOR 3 cannot be far away.Top
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