THE PREDATOR – Film Review

From Shane Black, the director of the seventh installment in the Marvel Cinematic Universe Iron Man 3, brings us the newest Predator film that is unfortunately bloated with cheesy dialogue, distracting visual effects, and a boring story.

A young boy accidentally causes the Predator to come down to the planet Earth, whose goal is to wipe out humanity. Many soldiers and other armed forces now are tasked to team up with each other to stop the Predator from wreaking absolute mayhem.

Before going to see The Predator I was not at all excited. The first trailer that was released months back did not impress me at all – it looked extremely bland, and seemed that it would not have any substance, but instead, just mindless entertainment that will more than likely please moviegoers that are just looking to go to the movie theatre to watch a film about a crazy hunter named Predator that releases chaos on Earth. But for someone like me, who wanted The Predator to be a film that actually had a captivating  and emotional story that contained memorable and likeable characters, this film did not impress me.

Brian A. Prince as The Predator in The Predator (2018)

One of the weakest elements in The Predator is that it tries severely to be a comedy film at times. I kind of already had a feeling that the film would be comedic due to the director, Black, directing numerous comedic films in the past such as 2016’s The Nice Guys, and 2005’s Kiss Kiss Bang Bang. This film would have greatly benefited from a much more serious tone. Not once while watching The Predator did I get the feeling that the world was in danger, which is crucial to the film’s story, but I didn’t feel this way due to the humor overpowering everything else. If an individual was in a situation in which a bizarre looking alien-like creature came down to Earth and was setting out to kill all of humanity, nobody would be telling jokes, but for some baffling reason, that happens a lot in The Predator.

There are a couple of scenes that are entertaining, mainly the scenes with Predator destroying things. The issue with these scenes though, are the visual effects. They are not necessarily awful, it is just that they are so blinding at times. It reminded me of the 2011 film Skyline where all the alien ships emitted an extraordinarily bright blue color off of them.

Also, there is a wide variety of dialogue in this picture that comes across as downright corny. Some lines were so unbearably cringe-inducing that it eventually became difficult to take the film seriously at all.

Jacob Tremblay as Rory McKenna in The Predator (2018)

I also did not really care for the characters whatsoever during the course of the film. They do not really have much to work with, as the Predator character is introduced fairly quickly in the film, and from there, its all action sequences with CGI and nothing else of value. Unfortunately, it appears that we may never get a Predator film that incorporates good characters with a gripping story. This new film basically does not even really have that much of a story. A child is responsible for the arrival of Predator on Earth, which, if done correctly, could have been a decently interesting story. Instead, from that point forward, we are shown action sequences for almost the entire film, which gives the story not enough time and space to fully develop.

A bland story topped with bloated action sequences, surface level characters, and a far too comedic tone make The Predator a forgettable mess.

Overall Grade: D+

MPAA Rating: Rated R for strong bloody violence, language throughout, and crude sexual references

Cast: Boyd Holbrook, Trevante Rhodes, Jacob Tremblay, Keegan-Michael Key

Directed by: Shane Black

Distributed by: 20th Century Fox

Running Time: 107 minutes

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