Reviewed by: Zombie Boy
What's it about
A buncha people find themselves in a jungle being hunted by the titular Predator aliens. Gotta love an elegant concept.
Is it good movie?
Predators starts off pretty good. The characters are quite literally dropped into the middle of the action, some from a plane, all with no memory of how they got to the godforsaken jungle in which they find themselves. After the requisite in-fighting, they discover that they are all soldiers of one kind or another, and begin to get the sense that something otherworldy has brought them to where they are to make them the prey instead of their usual predators. Nimrod Antal knows how to craft a tense scene, and handles his disparate characters well, and I was having a gory good time as their opponents began showing themselves.
I was still with the movie when the Predator action goes full force. I mean, who wouldn’t be? They’re big, scary, and have hella cool toys. Their cloaking devices, shoulder missiles, and heat-tracing scanners are just as awesome now as they were 23-years ago. All the different versions of the Predator design over the years are present in this film, including the original, which hasn’t been captured on film since ’87. So if nothing else this film is a nice love letter to the hardcore fans who’ve stuck by the franchise through thick and (mostly) thin.
Unfortunately, the film started to lose me with the introduction of fat Morpheus. Laurence Fishburne shows up as the lone human survivor of hunts past, and the action really slows down when they chill at his makeshift pad. I could have lived with that, but after that shows itself to be the debacle the rules of script-writing demands it must be, we are treated to the single worst eleventh-hour plot twist this side of an M. Night Shyamalan film. It totally destroyed the movie for me, and by the time the incredibly logic-defying and frankly stupid conclusion came along I was long since caring.
Video / Audio
Video: Widescreen, and naturally a wonderful presentation. It really shows that it takes place all on location. I wish the script was as well done as the cinematography.
Audio: There are three audio tracks: English in 5.1 Dolby Digital, and Spanish and French in Dolby Surround, and subtitles in Spanish and in English for the deaf and hard of hearing.
Commentary by Robert Rodriguez and Nimrod Antal: This commentary starts with as much of a bang as the film does. The two guys clearly love movies, and clearly like each other, and the talk is entertaining and engaging.
Decloaking the Invisible: Alien Terrain: This is an 11-minute behind the scenes doc mostly concerning the jungle setting. It’s pretty standard stuff, but it is refreshing that they went through the trouble to do it all in the real world and not rely on green-screening in a studio.
Motion Comics: Moments of Extraction features two pretty impressive prequel vignettes, for Isabella and Mombasa. They’re each about two minutes long, and feature really gorgeous comic-style artwork and interesting animations. Crucified is similar, except about the smaller Pred that the gang finds trussed up at the aliens’ camp, and is not as visually appealing, unfortunately.
Theatrical Trailer: This is the full trailer, trying hard to make the film look like something other than a couple of people being chased around a patch of grass by aliens.
Sneak Peak: Various trailers for other 20th Century Fox products.
Predators is full of fine acting, great direction and photography, and butt-loads of Predator action. If you can look past the silly plot twists and the insulting ending, you’ll have a good, brainless time with this one.