Review – The Predator (2018)
Review – The Predator (2018)
Directed by: Shane Black
Written by: Shane Black & Fred Dekker
Produced by: John Davis & Bill Bannerman
Starring: Boyd Holbrook, Sterling K. Brown & Olivia Munn
Release Date: September 12th 2018 (UK)
Recently, I decided to go back to go back re-watch Shane Black’s The Predator for review. This is a film that you can look at in a couple of different ways. You can either look at it and take none of it seriously; in which case this is a fairly fun, if extremely dumb action sci-fi romp. Or you can take a bit more seriously, – which I think the moviemakers want you to; – in which case it is an all-over-the-place mess that is unbearably cringey at times.
The main problem here is that I am not sure how the director wants us to take this film because the tone is all over the place. Some of the film’s characters play it totally straight and other are clearly just having a laugh with the ridiculously cheesy material they have been given to work with.
The cast are generally okay, but it is as if they are all working on totally different movies. Boyd Holbrook, Alfie Allen and Olivia Munn are taking the whole thing pretty seriously and playing it straight, Meanwhile, everyone else around them plays it comically and the clash of tones never really sits well throughout the movie.
On paper, I should have loved this film. I am a long time Predator fan, I love the original and I think that Predators is a solid sequel too, (let’s not mention Predator 2.) I am also a fan of Shane Black and you are telling me that the guy responsible for the Lethal Weapon movies, Kiss Kiss Bang Bang and The Nice Guys is making a Predator movie? That sounds awesome! Unfortunately though, it really isn’t.
Additionally, the VFX in the film is also pretty inconsistent. At times some of the effects look okay, but at others the CGI is painfully obvious. Strangely, it is particularly poor on The Predator himself. The CGI makes him feel really weightless and oddly light and floaty, which is kind of the opposite of how the Predator is supposed to look as he moves around onscreen.
The whole ‘hunter becomes the hunted,’ trope used in the movie actually serves as an appropriate metaphor for what this series has become. The once king of action sci fi is now on the back foot and being outdone by bigger, stronger competitors. Thus, try as he might, by comparison the OG hunter can’t stand up to it’s superior successor.
In summary, this not the best Predator movie by a long shot, but it’s definitely not the worst either. There are some laughs to be had and some cool kills sprinkled through the film. However, there are definitely better action/sci fi movies that have dropped in the last few years that are far more worthy of your time.
If you enjoyed Dan’s review of The Predator, you can check out what he thought of Fantastic Beasts here.
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