General Release 2010
106 minutes approx
Directed by -
Written by -
Alex Litvak & Michael Finch
A group of humans wake up in mid-air freefall into an unknown jungle. Each of them is armed adn each of them is a killer in his own right, except for a doctor anyway. They quickly realise that they are not only not in Kansas anymore, but are in fact on another planet where they are to be hunted by aliens, aliens who are almost invisible when they want to be, are armed with laser weapons, missiles and unbreakable blades and are trained and capable hunters.
This is not so much a direct sequel to 1987's Arnold Schwarzenegger vehicle PREDATOR as a direct retelling of the same story with an 's' at the end. That means there are more Predators than the original single hunter, but otherwise the plot might as well be exactly the same. Heavily armed people run through a jungle being pursued by the hunter(s). That's pretty much it. Admittedly there is now a pack of hunting 'dogs' that the Predators use and there are two kinds of Predator that don't get on, but these are tweaks rather than original plotting.
Nor can the film point to original new characters as a reason for its existence either. The new group are caricatures, introduced as the pinnacle of their kind, but that's all that is done. Nothing then colours in the sketched outline. Thus we have a Yakuza (who admittedly gets to go one on one with a Predator armed with Katana in one of the film's 'highlights'), an african gang leader, a South American drug cartel enforcer, ex-Spetnatz underworld hit man and so on. Thus identified, they get to run a lot (even though Royce specifically says at the start of the film that the one thing they ought not to do is run) and die.
The action is OK, though shot with the choppy, shakycam editing that is now de rigeur in action film since the BOURNE movies that it is sometimes tough to tell what is happening to which character.
The special effects, though there aren't that many of them, are effortlessly well done. The Predator costumes and makeup are also equally impressive, even if we have seen them before. The film can't have the reveal of what the alien is that the original had, so we have to see them up close and personal from fairly early on and they do look the part.
Adrien Brody is the nominal star, and therefore most likely to stay alive, but he doesn't really come across successfully as a cold-blooded military killer. Alice Braga is more believable as the tough warrior with a heart. Few of the others get a chance to make any impression since they just have to run and jump and fire guns a lot.
switch off your brain, go with it and PREDATORS is a perfectly OK alien action movie, but if you've seen the original then you've already seen this, which adds only the 'S' to the original.Top
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