Sunday, November 4, 2018

Well, I guess I'm in.

The original Predator film is in my DNA.

String up my naked corpse from a tree, rip my skull and spine out of my tattered body, and all over the jungle floor will be fragments of John McTiernan's classic. Even if I ain't got time to bleed, you'll see the 1987 Schwarzenegger flick spilling out all over the damn place.

The woosh woosh of the Predator scanning his surroundings. The minigun that cleared out an acre of trees in thirty seconds. The dead scorpion in predator vision. The yousonuvabitch handshake between Arnie and Apollo Creed. Hawkin's simultaneously teaching me about the birds and the bees and how sound reverberates in a vast chamber. I have seen that movie so many f--king times, it's a part of me. Hell, a part of us, as each of my three brothers feel the same way.

But my sister? My twenty-eight year old baby sister? She's never seen it. Like, never ever.

Violet was infinitely curious as this poster adorned our local theater for months.
Which likely explains why she absolutely adored Shane Black's latest entry into the Predator franchise. Bouncing and clapping along and just having a merry f--king time was my sister Tatianna, who, after we had just got home from Monster-Mania Con [wrap], straight-up devoured her first taste of the outer-space skull collectors.

For me, however, The Predator was just the latest film featuring those ugly muddafuckas that desperately lacked the sublime magic of the original. Oh, it's not terrible by any stretch. It's just not, you know, Predator.

After its ship crashes on Earth, a Predator gets into a bit of a kerfuffle with soldiers who were on some sort of hostage-rescue mission. An army-ranger type dude named McKenna, kicks its ass a bit, and in the process gets a hold of some sweet alien tech. Worried that the government will frame/kill him, he mails himself the iconic helmet as a potential bargaining chip later on down the road. Unfortunately, his autistic son opens the package and, obviously, wears the badass helmet to go trick-or-treating.

While that's good news for the kid, it's bad news for everyone else, as the helmet/mask thing acts as a beacon which the Predator can follow to get its gear back. Of course it does this, but not before gloriously murdering a room full of dudes in lab coats in the meantime. Though it doesn't kill everyone, as it thankfully decides to spare a naked woman. Yep. Even the most elite sport hunters in the galaxy aren't total dicks. 

McKenna also isn't a dick, but he's gonna have to get extra hard to tango with this alien Whoopi Goldberg looking sumbitch. See, as the Predator is headed straight for his house and his son, McKenna is labeled utterly f--king insane by Uncle Sam and sent to a mental hospital. The good news? The transport bus is full of legitimately batshit-crazy a-holes, and they're more than game to help kill an outer space monster. Like, beyond enthusiastic.

Yes, Goonies Never Die! but the same can't be said for this ragtag gang of f--k-ups....
And honestly, with the introduction of The Loonies, I couldn't have been more excited for what was to come. Thomas Jane and Keegan-Michael Key (and some other badass dudes) anchor what turned out to be, for me, the best part of the film. A group of secondary characters laughing and incessantly f--king around? Sign me up. They seemed to be in on the joke that this movie was wholly unneccesary, while the leads had to play it a bit more straight, you know?

Who doesn't have to play anything straight, are the Yays and Boos. As this was a Friday, we started to nod off at the end. Yep, the only thing more familiar than yet another crack at injecting life into the Predator franchise is the sad fact that I can't hang in past 11:30 on a Friday night, for f--k's sake.

Yeah it's gonna hurt, but also looks like fun.

  • The level of violence was entirely appreciated! Holy shit, things escalate quickly. Dudes get cut in half, someone loses an arm (and a head), and one f--ker takes a tranq dart to the eye! Ahhhhh......
  • Goodness, Yvonne Strahovski is hot. How'd you lose her, Boyd?
  • Man, seeing Jake Busy in anything makes me so happy. And he's so old now, right? Like, older than me. 
  • Coyle is the f--king best (Key). Give me a prequel with him and Jane's Baxley character in Summer 2020 and I'll get in line right f--king now.
  • Even though I basically hated Space Dog(s), I did develop a bit of a soft-spot for this CGI abomination. Aww, poor pup.
  • So, uh, that massive Predator dude was pretty f--king badass, right? Holy shit. I think that f--ker would have killed Dutch. Hahaha....just kidding. Nothing could ever kill Dutch. Except an underwritten cameo (what the f--k is this??)
  • I want to be a Predator Killer for Halloween. Check that. Next Halloween.
  • And finally, even if I didn't know I as doing it at the time, I was pretty stoked to be able to introduce my kid-sister to the Predator franchise, likely in a similar fashion to the way my brothers indoctrinated me thirty years ago. Okay, fine. It wasn't remotely the same. I took her to an actual state-of-the-art theater to see her first Predator film. My brothers? They got that shit at the video store. On VHS. And we watched it on our 13 inch tube tv. During the day. 
The Boo is this makes me think of/kind of miss G4TV.
  • I thought this movie was too loud. Yeah, read that again. Or, put into Google translate: I'm a huge f--king bitch and shouldn't be allowed outside because I'm old and pathetic.
  • Would you like to meet a Predator? Oof. That line didn't age well. (on a serious note, I fully support the fact that Munn went full-on scorched Earth policy during promoting this film. Bad for them, good for her. She had no business being put in that spot, f--k everyone)
  • You are one beautiful motherf--ker. Nice try, but no. Didn't work.
  • When did Predator dogs become a thing? Were they in that Adrien Brody one, too? (I forget everything about that one....wait...there was one with him, right?)
  • Oh f--k me, that shooting your own foot bit still makes me squirm. Yeooouch.
  • Is it me, or does the end go way the f--k off the rails? It all seemed so random nonsensical, and possibly part of a different movie altogether. As a kid, force fields were all the rage (you'd call that shit at the last possible second) and kept people safe. Here? Well, not so much.
  • And finally, stay with me here, I have been a fan of Shane Black's work for a long time. But only because of The Nice Guys [review]. I honestly didn't even like Iron Man 3 [review] at all. But still, The Nice Guys is so good, and people seem to f--king lose their shit for Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang, I would have told you I was a fan (controversy notwithstanding). But in prepping for this review, I found out HE WAS F--KING HAWKINS in the original Predator? ARE YOU F--KING KIDDING ME? And, AND, he wrote pretty much every movie I was ever raised on, including The Monster Squad?!!!!! Mr. Stark Black...I don't feel so good...
No action movie that comes out this or any year from here on out will ever matter to me as much as the original Predator movie does. Or should that say did? I hadn't even hit double-digits when I started to become obsessed with Dutch, Dillon, Blain and Mac. But I'm nearing forty now, so good f--king luck to any film becoming a part of me. That kid? He loved space monsters murdering soldiers in the jungle.

But the old man? He just likes going to the movies with his sister. Or his kids. 

They're part of his DNA.


  1. Aw man you just had to hit me in the feels right at the end there didn't you? I'd never seen a Predator movie before this one either (much to the show and diappointment of my husband) but I had a lot of fun with this one. If they ever remake Suicide Squad - the cast are right here!

    1. Hahaha....yeah, I took a shot there at the end.

      I had fun here, too, as the whole vibe of the film was a lot more loose than I thought it would be. I would be all for the Loonies getting their own film at some point...but, uh, I'd guess it would have to be a prequel.

      Oh, god no. No more Suicide Squad, please. I think we've seen too much Trash Witch as it is.

  2. Well at least you dragged these morons in the cast. I was just so bored during this movie, it was a complete mess. The script was just ridiculous and not in the good way.

    1. Bored? Really? I mean, I did start to fall I guess I can see it.

      That said, I'm actually interested in seeing it again, at the very least to spend another hour and a half with Jane and Key. Loved those dudes.

  3. I haven't seen this yet but I'll probably watch it on TV. Sterling K. Brown looked interesting in it.

    1. Sterling K. has become so jacked it's bananas. Definitely stoked to see more of that dude in stuff. He's awesome.