Run Time: 107 mins
What To Expect: A 20th Century Fox dumpster fire
The Predator is not the corrective surgery we were hoping for when we first heard that Shane Black would direct an all new movie. The franchise was first soiled by Paul W.S. Anderson with AvP in 2004, followed by two more movies that were also unsatisfactory. But what kind of fate is this, where Shane Black himself creates the worst movie of the whole series? One that’ll probably kill the whole thing off as we know it?
From the outer reaches of space, to the bowels of CGI hell shark jumping, Boyd Holbrook plays a sniper who has a run-in with a Predator while on a routine wet work mission. Holbrook’s close encounter makes him a valuable witness to the powers that be, who take him into custody because of his rare intimacy with the alien life form, whom the government is now actively tracking. Holbrook’s encounter though is nothing next to the inadvertent signalling of yet more Predators to earth by his autistic son, using the booty tech he sent home via post (because that’s what we’d all do with trillion dollar tech, yes?).
Elsewhere, Olivia Munn’s biologist teacher joins Holbrook’s new group of misfit ex-soldiers (Tom Jane, Trevante Rhodes), who coincidentally go head to head with Predators in Jerkwater, USA, who are looking for a Macguffin. But not before all are accosted, beaten up and chased outta town by the return of Kevin Nash’s Super Shredder… sorry, Kevin Nash is not in this movie, but that’s the only thing I can see here, and hear — unintentionally hilarious grunting noises included. The Predators are now using DNA splicing to roid themselves up, but given the stupidity of their actions in this movie there are side effects that make them as dumb as Beebop and Rocksteady.
And every time the movie should kick things into a high gear, we just revert back to more gnarly humorous Shane Black dialogue, which isn’t really funny. Where are the scares?
It was funny to see Boyd Holbrook boast that this pile of shit was a thinking man’s movie, next to the original masterpiece. Yet here it is, a plot-free mess driven by mom jokes, turd jokes, cringeliners (‘Get to the chopper’, really?!) and silly Avengers-style overkill. Do you want to see Holbrook surfing a CGI space ship while a one-armed Super Shredder pilots it chaotically through the sky, grunting like fuck at the controls? No? The Marvel connection seemingly deliberate too, the obvious desire to set up some type of Iron Man sequel with Holbrook is so far off the mark from what the original movies, and hell, even the previous three movies were, the only thing left for us to do is mourn.
It’s worse than a pity. It’s the end. Predator will never recover.