As mentioned on the Predator Movies hubpage, Predators was released in 2010 and produced by Robert Rodriguez and directed by Nimród Antal. Predators looked to be to Predator what Aliens was to Alien. While the Alien and Predator franchises are actually quite different, what Aliens did was capture the same tone of Alien in a way that Predator 2 did not with the tone of Predator.
Predators wisely ignores the Aliens vs. Predator movies, and to a large degree ignores Predator 2 as well. We do not see the aftermath of Predator 2, but considering a Predator was running lose in Los Angeles it would be difficult to imagine their existence still being a mystery. Officially, Predators is the sequel to Predator 2, however.
In Predators I like how it has returned to a forest setting, as with the first. When movies such as Predator 2 and Aliens vs. Predator: Requiem take place in populated areas, a lot of the story seems to take place at night, which makes it harder to tell what is going on. Also, the idea of alien warriors testing themselves against humanity’s most hardened warriors is a lot more fun for me than watching Predators kill their way through innocent and untrained town dwellers. In Predators Robert Rodriguez and Nimród Antal have come up with an original way of replicating the ‘our best versus their best’ theme of the original.
Predators features signature Robert Rodriguez cost-cutting, coming in with a budget of only $40 million. What he is able to produce with that budget is impressive. However, there are times where scenes lack a little polish and perhaps some extra budget would have helped that. Still, the studio got plenty of bang for their buck with this film. Nimród Antal does a terrific job with the action scenes.
The cast is made up of Adrien Brody, Laurence Fishburne, Topher Grace, Alice Braga, Danny Trejo, Walton Goggins, Oleg Taktarov, Mahershalalhashbaz Ali and Louis Ozawa Changchien. Oscar-winner Adrien Brody was an interesting choice for the lead role. He sports a gravely voice and bad-ass attitude that the cynical will roll their eyes at, but the Predator fans will lap up. In casting Predators, Rodriguez mentioned that if they went for muscled up action stars he would be criticised for trying to copy the original, and if he didn’t he would get criticised for not casting legitimate action stars. He chose to make the cast leaner than that of Predator, and thus more realistic compared to real soldiers. However, the cast members such as Brody and Braga clearly prepared for the role and definitely look the part.
My main issue with the film is the Topher Grace character, Edwin. It’s played well by Topher Grace, but as much as I couldn’t buy the doctor turned serial killer twist at the end, I just couldn’t buy the character wanting to stay on the planet. However, Edwin is so out of place in the group that the audience knows there is more to his story, so the reason they eventually give is as good as any. There has been some criticism of the Laurence Fishburne character, Noland, including the movie stalling after his scenes. I did not have too much issue with that part of the story though.
Predators is a fun return to form for the Predator franchise. I would recommend it to anyone who enjoyed the original Predator movie and I hope they begin work on another sequel soon.
A rag tag group of various strangers awaken to find themselves falling
through the air and landing at various spots in the forest. They soon
realise that except for a doctor, Edwin, (Topher Grace) they are all
types of warriors from different parts of the world. There is a member
of a Mexican drug cartel, a Yakuza, a Russian Spetsnaz soldier,
Revolutionary United Front officer, and a death row inmate. There is
also a Israel Defence Forces sniper, Isabelle, played by Alice Braga and
a mysterious mercenary, Royce (Adrien Brody) who take on leadership
The group makes their way to high ground, passing empty cages, a plant with neurotoxic poison and a dead U.S soldier who had laid a variety of traps trying to defend himself against an uncertain enemy. Once they make it to high ground they can see an alien sky and realise they are not on earth.
Dog-like alien beasts attack, causing the group to break up as they try to defend themselves. After regrouping they see Cuchillo, the cartel enforcer, is missing. They find his dead body and recorded voice being used as a trap. It is clear they are here to be hunted.
After trying to battle the Predators they meet a former air assault soldier, Noland (Laurence Fishburne), who has eluded the Predators for years and survived by scavenging. However, he lures them into a trap to tray and kill the humans to steal their gear. The Predators are attracted to Nolan’s hideout and kill him and the death row inmate, Stans. Nikolai the Russian soldier, dies saving Edwin but takes a Predator with him by blowing himself up. A Predator and Hanzo have a sword fight in the meadow and kill each other.
Edwin is injured in a trap, so and Royce attempts to free a captured Predator they found earlier to take him to earth. Isabelle stays with Edwin, but they are trapped. Edwin reveals himself to be a serial killer and has no intention of leaving the planet. He injects Isabelle with neurotoxin, paralysing her. Royce shows up and stabs Edwin, then booby traps Edwin with grenades. This disorients the Predator and Royce gets the upper hand. Isabelle and Royce eventually defeat the Predator. As they discuss escaping the planet more prey for the Predators start parachuting to the surface.
Predators not bad-ass enough?
Some criticism I have heard of Predators is that the Predators die too easily in the end. I disagree with this. Yes, the Predators easily kill the humans until there are only a few left, and then the Predators start being killed in one-on-one situations with the humans. However, this is not too different to the first where the original Predator killed all of the Special Forces until there was only Dutch (Arnie) left, and Dutch ended up being able to defeat the Predator. In many movies, an annoyance of mine is where the good guys, who were previously completely outmatched, all of a sudden become able to defeat the bad guys when there are only a few good guys left. However, I don’t think this applies in Predators.
To argue this I will look at each Predator death-by-human in Predators:
Predators killed by humans:
In Predators, the first one dies because he chooses to pause a moment before killing the Russian Spetsnaz soldier, Nikolai, who then blows both of them up. This seems very plausible to me. Firstly, Predators have proven themselves to have a penchant for theatre and gloating. Secondly, knowing he was about to die, I have no trouble believing Nikolai would try and take the Predator with him.
A Predator and Hanzo the Yakuza kill each other after a sword fight in the meadow. It seems feasible that any creature that would go to such lengths to test themselves against other species would back himself to beat the shirtless guy carrying a samurai sword in a sword fight. Whether or not a human could win such a battle is debateable, but I actually expected the Yakuza to do a lot better when he busted out a samurai sword. That’s not even taking into account that the Predator was shanked repeatedly by Stans the death row inmate in the previous scene.
When it comes to the boss Predator at the end I am most surprised to hear criticism that the Predators die too easily. That guy took heaps of punishment and kept on coming. It had grenades blow up in his face from the booby-trapped Edwin; it took a lot of undefended clubs to the face from Royce; it got shot by a huge sniper rifle, and then finally it was decapitated.
Predators on Blu-Ray
Blu-ray Theatrical Feature
Disc 2: Special Features:
- Commentary by Robert Rodriguez and Nimród Antal
- Motion Comics
- Moments of Extraction
- Crucified Evolution of the Species: Predators Reborn
- The Chosen
- Fox Movie Channel presents Making a Scene
- Deleted and Extended Scenes
- Theatrical Trailer
Predators on DVD
- Commentary by Robert Rodriguez and Nimród Antal
- De-cloaking the Invisible: Alien Terrain
- Motion Comics Moments of Extraction: Robert Rodriguez presents
exclusive prequel vignettes voiced by the cast of PREDATORS. Witness the
secret adventures that turned two of our world's most ruthless killers
into the ultimate Predator prey: Isabelle, Mombasa