Predator is one of the best action films of all time; that’s just a fact. The cast, dialogue, music and action are all spot on and the Predator himself remains the coolest movie alien in cinema history.
Plot: A team of commandos on a mission in a Central American jungle find themselves hunted by an extra-terrestrial warrior.
Review: Wait… what sorcery is this? I could have sworn I’d reviewed Predator before; it actually ends up that I haven’t reviewed ANY of the three films so guess what? It’s Unofficial Predator Week on The Action Elite! I’ll be reviewing all three flicks over the next few days and today we’ll start with the original classic.
Well, what is there to say that hasn’t already been said a thousand times? Predator is one of the few perfect action movies, up there with Die Hard which incidentally is also directed by John McTiernan.
This is the template for how to do a Men on a Mission movie with everyone in the cast on dazzling form; you’ve got Arnie as Dutch Schaefer, the leader of his group of mercenaries who is tough as nails but will also do anything to help his unit.
Bill Duke, Shane Black and Sonny Landham are all perfectly cast as the soldiers with Black providing some choice lines. I can’t wait to see what he brings to the new Predator movie in the next year or so…
Jesse Ventura has some of the most quotable lines of the film like “It’s payback time!” and “I ain’t got time to bleed!”
The film in general is one of the most quotable action movies of all time; Arnie has his iconic “Get to the choppa!”, “stick around!”, “If it bleeds we can kill it!” and “Knock knock!” lines to name but a few.
His verbal dick measuring contest with Dylan (Carl Weathers) during the movie’s opening is one of the most macho scenes of all time and sets the tone for the rest of the movie. These guys are hard asses but by the time they meet a certain alien visitor they quickly become the prey.
As the men slowly realize what kind of opponent they are facing it doesn’t take long for them to start cracking.
It’s actually quite slowburn during the first half, expertly building up tension and not revealing the creature until the action-packed finale. We get to spend time getting to know the characters and we actually care what happens to them.
When Dutch is the last man standing, he gives out a mighty war cry challenging the Predator to a final battle, who doesn’t let him down. Rather than Dutch having to use his physical prowess against the creature, it’s his brains that are required to defeat this tough as nails adversary.
This is one of Arnold’s best roles as Dutch is a surprisingly vulnerable hero and not the invincible badass he usually is. He gets his ass kicked by the Predator and unlike Ventura, he really does have time to bleed.
It’s the perfect mixture of action, sci-fi and horror with some nice touches of gore and a side order of huge guns to decimate the jungle.
Alan Silvestri’s music score is flawless, building up tension at the right moments and also using plenty of military gusto for the action scenes.
The Ultimate Hunter Edition Blu-ray which I have is excellent quality; the visuals have been remastered and I disagree with some people who say that the remastering makes the flesh colours look rubbery. It looks great to me and the DTS sound was outstanding; I nearly blew the speakers at one point.
Overall, Predator is one of the best action films of all time; that’s just a fact. The cast, dialogue, music and action are all spot on and the Predator himself remains the coolest movie alien in cinema history.