So, Robert Rodriguez has grabbed the Predator franchise by its oozy dayglo green goolies and gone for a reboot; that computer thing where, when you’ve tried all the sensible options, you switch the useless box off, kick it, switch it on again and hope it works.
It needed it. I saw AVP, I saw AVP: Requiem. But I can’t remember a damn thing about them. not one thing. Not one moment. This from films where Aliens fight Predators! What went wrong?
The first Predator was pretty good. I remember things. I remember Arnie meeting his old pal; they shake hands and the camera moves in on the most ridiculously bulging biceps ever. I remember cigars. I remember Arnie taking the predator’s helmet off and saying a funny line about him being ugly. I remember Arnie getting his kit off and covering himself in mud. Let’s remember some more.
Yep, pretty good. Knock knock. I like that.
So, this new one, Predators, it’s trying to be the first proper sequel. And it’s, well, pretty pretty good. By putting an ‘S’ on the end instead of a 2 it’s wanting us to think “hey! This might be a bit like Aliens; more creatures and more mayhem and more fun.” And that’s what we get, more predators, more weaponry, more craziness and a motley bunch of people who are all, if we’re being kind, archetypes. Possibly stereotypes. No, let’s go archy on this. There’s a feisty hispanic lady, a bullish, big-boned Russkie, a loopy nutty Paxton-like criminal, an African Warlord, a too good to be true “innocent” doctor, a yakuza with no fingers but a big gun and bigger sword, someone else, oh and replacing the Governator, none other than… Adrien Brody?????
Ok, we bought Nicolas Cage when he went all topless and greasy and hairy in Con Air, but… Adrien Brody?
Arnold Schwarzenegger… Adrien Brody.
If you aren’t living in Britain this next bit may make no sense to you. Here goes; it’s like watching Alistair McGowan doing Bear Grylls.
The shock is he’s ok. He’s pretty good. The film’s ok. It’s very exciting. It’s great. No more though eh?
And finally, a mention for Predator 2. The classic that’s been overlooked. It’s got Busey, Glover and, crucially, Paxton. What more do you want? If it has to be remade I hope they call it Predators and the City.
Aaaaaah…. Paxton! There was a time when you knew where you with with a Paxton film. He’d cry and whine and whimper and snivel and we all loved him. And now it hits me… earlier I said “someone else” because I couldn’t remember the final member of the film’s octet. It was Danny Trejo! Where would a Rodriguez film be without an appearance by the scariest man ever. Well done tattooed dude.