Dir; Shane Black. Starring; Boyd Holbrook, Olivia Munn, Trevante Rhodes. R. Color. 107 min.
“The Predator” is back. This time he’s deadlier than ever. For my critique, I would like to lay out the plot for you step by step. Spoilers to come, but this is what ACTUALLY HAPPENS in this film.
Boyd Holbrook plays Quinn Mckenna, an army sharpshooter. While on assignment in Mexico, an alien ship crashes before his eyes. Out of that ship a “Predator” emerges, killing Quinn’s entire team. Cut to a few days later. Quinn enters a dive bar in Mexico and asks the bartender to send a package for him (that’s the first place I’d go for postal service). He then drops a metal ball he found from the alien crash into a shot of tequila and drinks it. That metal ball gives him the power of camouflage just like the Predators. Ah, OK.
The package Mckenna sent was to his ex-wife’s house for his savant son Rory (Jacob Tremblay). Rory opens the package and discovers several pieces of Predator technology that he is able to decipher and control in one night. Technology that high end scientists have not been able to crack since the first Predator landed over 30 years ago. Ah, OK.
Meanwhile, Casey Brackett (Olivia Munn) is a top biologist and is brought in to study the Predator that was captured by the government during the incident. The creature has human DNA. “So you brought me here to figure out if a human was f-ing an alien?” is what Brackett says. Hands down, best piece of dialogue I’ve heard in years.
The Predators from previous films were not just ripping out skulls and spines of humans as trophies, they were taking spinal fluid from their kill to inject into themselves and create the ultimate Predator. Apparently a species who has mastered inter-space technology needs the spinal fluid of humans who have only made it to the moon to make them bigger and stronger. The Predator escapes and destroys a legion of soldiers. The biologist is the only survivor as she is suddenly an expert in weaponry and combat. OK, now you’re kind of loosing me.
During all of this, Mckenna is placed on a prison bus with a motley crew of discarded soldiers on their way to jail. You have the funny one, the quite one, the one with turrets syndrome, the one with a funny accent. Of course this bus is leaving the same facility that the Predator is escaping from. Naturally all classified government agencies also transport inmates. The prisoners take over the bus just in time for Olivia Munn to jump on top and join the gang. She informs our main character that the Predator will be going after the equipment that he sent to his son. Instead of escaping, this group of prisoners decide to follow Mckenna in hopes of saving his family. OK, at this point none of this makes sense.
The Predator is not just the hunter, he is also the hunted. Apparently he went rogue. The “Ultimate” Predator, juiced up like Barry Bonds with years of human spinal fluid (I wonder if there is drug testing in Predator-ville?), arrives to get back the stolen technology. He is one big boy. Despite it being established in all of the previous films that the Predator’s need their mask to see their prey by use of heat vision, this guy doesn’t need a mask to see things in Predator cam. Can’t blame him. Ask anyone going to an Opera party how annoying it is to have a mask on for more than an hour. I’m glad the Predator species mastered the art of Lasik eye surgery. The “Ultimate” Predator is also bullet proof, taking multiple machine gun hits without being phased. Until the end when the hero has to save his son and conveniently is able to shoot and kill him in the head with a pistol.
Look, I understand you can’t look at an action movie like this with common sense. This movie has no sense. The government can’t stop the Predator’s, our only hope is a group of crazy ex-military prisoners? The Predators have advanced technology, but need human spinal fluid to advance themselves as a species? I do not know how this was not a SyFy channel movie of the week. As soon as Olivia Munn is introduced as the country’s most intelligent biologist, you know you’re in for a long night. There have been several franchises that were great then fell off. Some maintained greatness from start to finish. Others have always been bad. I cannot think of a franchise that started off where I said with the first installment “yeah, that was alright,” and every installment afterwards topped itself in stupidity. Run from the theater and “GET TO DA CHOPPA!” to avoid this train wreck.
Suck Factor: 7out of 7 (7 means your movie really SUCKS!)
Written by Byrd
The SUCK FACTOR, how it works. We have flipped the rating system upside down. If a film is classic, it gets a 0. Meaning that movie has 0 SUCKS. If a film is complete trash you must avoid at all costs, it gets a 7, meaning this movie really SUCKS!