Kyle J. Steenblik

The Predator is Bombastic but Mediocre [Review]

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The Predator
Directed by Shane Black
Written by Fred Dekker, Shane Black
Based on Characters by Jim Thomas, John Thomas
Starring: Boyd Holbrook, Trevante Rhodes, Jacob Tremblay, Keegan-Michael Key, Olivia Munn, Thomas Jane, Alfie Allen, Sterling K. Brown
Production company Davis Entertainment, TSG Entertainment
Distributed by Twentieth Century Fox
Release date September 14, 2018
Running time 107 minutes
Rated R for strong bloody violence, language throughout, and crude sexual references

2 stars out of 5
From the outer reaches of space to the small-town streets of suburbia, the hunt comes home. Now, the universe’s most lethal hunters are stronger, smarter and deadlier than ever before, having genetically upgraded themselves with DNA from other species. When a rogue Predator crash lands on earth it kicks off a catastrophic chain of events beginning with Traeger (Sterling K. Brown), who heads project Stargazer, recovering and capturing the Predator, but not before sniper Quinn McKenna (Boyd Holbrook) manages to come across the crash and steal two valuable alien artifacts as proof of his story.  To protect this proof McKenna mails the stolen alien items back home.  However, this does not protect McKenna from being framed for the deaths of his team to protect the secret of the Predator’s existence and wrongfully committed with a group of violent ex-soldiers.  Meanwhile at project Stargazer Traeger has recruited the help of biologist Casey Bracket (Olivia Munn) to study the surviving Predator.  However, things go sideways when McKenna’s autistic son opens the newly delivered package to discover the alien technology, and a super Predator shows up to hunt down the rogue Predator.

The biggest problem with The Predator is that the story doesn’t actually support the primary conflict in the story, and the secondary conflicts appear to exist in a vacuum being completely unsupported in the narrative.  The secondary problem is that Shane Black relies too heavily on one-liner jokes and nostalgia for the 1987 film.  The nonsensical plot is so riddled with holes and unsupported actions that any enjoyment of the film necessitates ignoring the story.  While there are enjoyable elements and hilarious jokes too much of the film relies on lazy plot devices and gratuitous gore to be a worthwhile waste of time.

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