Movie #68 2022: Predator (1987)

Yeah, yeah. I jumped on this bandwagon when I found out that Prey had been released on Disney+ a couple of weeks ago. Truth is, Predator was actually on my watchlist for years after I saw it on some sort of ‘Best Sci-Fi Movies’ ranking, so I was killing two birds with one stone really.

A classic amongst science fiction aficionados, Predator stars Arnold Schwarzenegger in one of his most iconic roles as a commando hired by the CIA. He and his men venture into the Central American jungle where they’ve been ordered to take down a mysterious threat that hunts down every human who’s tried to take it on in the past. When the soldiers find the creature is near-invisible, they realise that killing it might just be impossible.

Firslty, I’ve got to say… oh damn. Schwarzenegger was really at his most attractive in 1987, huh? Don’t even speak to me, I’m still thinking about his ridiculous biceps.

I’ll be the first to admit that I wasn’t sure how well this movie would hold up in this day and age. Particularly, it can be concerning when it comes to how special effects have aged after over 30 years. All this worrying was needless; the combat sequences are especially well done and well choreographed. Sure, Predator’s camouflage is a little bit dated in terms of its visuals, but it is used relatively scarcely so it only minorly detracts from the overall film. 

What really took me by surprise was how brilliantly the tension was created in Predator. Suspense is often lacking in films like this one despite the filmmaker’s best efforts, yet the use of minimal dialogue along with well performed reaction shots from Carl Weathers and Bill Duke in particular keep you on edge and stood at attention continuously. 

There’s one thing that’s a little up and down, and that’s Alan Silvestri‘s score. Man, that dude is so dramatic. Though it’s really impressive that he managed to fill almost every single second with music, sometimes it’s so distracting and really unnecessary. When it’s good though, it’s really good and the soundtrack amplifies the aforementioned tension accordingly. A for effort though, Alan. 

Perhaps the plot is a little simplistic all in all, but it dives straight in and doesn’t waste time giving you much backstory. The more you watch, the more you learn about the characters, which is way more interesting. Not to mention that Predator himself is cool as fuck. Very much looking forward to watching Prey now!

Predator is available to stream on Disney+ in the UK.

TQR Category Ratings:

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