The Predator reactions have exploded onto the web!
20th Century Fox and director Shane Black’s upcoming sci-fi action sequel The Predator made its debut at the Toronto International Film Festival last night, and the reviews are in. All in all it seems like the movie might be a mixed bag for critics, with many praising the action, humor, characters and subversion of genre tropes, while others damn the film for those exact same reasons. Check out all the latest The Predator reactions below!
From the outer reaches of space to the small-town streets of suburbia, the hunt comes home in Black’s explosive reinvention of the Predator series. Now, the universe’s most lethal hunters are stronger, smarter and deadlier than ever before, having genetically upgraded themselves with DNA from other species. When a young boy accidentally triggers their return to Earth, only a ragtag crew of ex-soldiers and a disgruntled science teacher can prevent the end of the human race.
The Predator cast features Logan’s Boyd Holbrook, Trevante Rhodes (Moonlight), Jacob Tremblay (Room, Wonder), Keegan-Michael Key (Tomorrowland), Olivia Munn (X-Men: Apocalypse), Sterling K. Brown (This is Us), Alfie Allen (Game of Thrones), Thomas Jane (The Mist), Augusto Aguilera, Jake Busey, and Yvonne Strahovski (The Handmaid’s Tale).
The original Predator was directed by McTiernan and starred Arnold Schwarzenegger as the leader of a United States special forces team that comes under attack from an alien entity that prizes the thrill of the hunt above all else. It was followed by a direct sequel, Predator 2, in 1990 before crossing over with Fox’s Alien franchise for two additional sequels, Alien vs. Predator and AvP: Requiem. In 2010, Nimrod Antal helmed a reboot with a new feature, Predators.
The Predator will open in theaters on September 14.
Variety: “Alas, within the Black oeuvre, ‘The Predator’ lands more between ‘The Last Boy Scout’ and ‘Iron Man 3,’ being a mixture of the flippant-knucklehead-machismo species with frantic comic-book action. Though there’s gore and creatures aplenty, say goodbye to any remaining horror element in this series. Now we’ve got a sort of mashup of Indiana Jones, ‘Jurassic Park,’ and a flying-kung-fu movie, no longer scary in the least but hella loud and busy.”
The Hollywood Reporter: “Taking up the reins of the franchise after a few underwhelming sequels and an even more problematic handful of tie-ins with the ‘Alien’ movies, writer-director Shane Black strays rather far from the original film — in which he co-starred as a bifocaled trooper who literally gets turned inside out — but he also takes things in a fun direction. Beyond adding a definite article to the title, Black applies a more-is-more approach to the material, revealing the extraterrestrial hunter in the very first sequence, then doubling down on the number of predators and corpses we see on screen, introducing a bigger, badder species and even a pair of predator pit bulls.”
IGN: “With its bawdy sense of humor, disorderly cast of characters, and hardcore kills and action, ‘The Predator’ does a lot right to reinvigorate the 31-year-old series. But everything crashes down during its frenzied, messy final act, a disappointing conclusion to what had largely been a fun romp up until that point.”
Nerdist: “In ‘The Predator,’ comedy and action are at war with each other. Characters spew rat-a-tat quips, while tussling with Predators and their pets, essentially neutralizing the effect of both the humor and the action. We’re given nothing to hook into, so it’s impossible to care about any of the events, which are wildly incomprehensible anyway. It devolves into a mundane mush of bullets and neon-green blood, hardly recognizable as one of Black’s usually slickly-plotted and stylishly-executed detective noir features.”
RogerEbert.com: “Shane Black’s ‘The Predator’ is a fun, brutal, fighting machine that wastes no time getting down to business—not unlike its title character. It’s not big on wasted dialogue or too many attempts at meta humor, playing both like an homage/throwback film to the action of the ‘80s and something that feels new and fresh. There’s nothing pretentious or whimsical here as we so often see in films that almost parody ‘80s action instead of trying to figure out why these movies have endured in the first place.”
JoBlo: “‘The Predator’ is Shane Black through and through. It’s fitting that this was co-written with his ‘The Monster Squad’ cohort, Fred Dekker. This feels very much like a hybrid of Dekker’s eighties output, as filtered through Black’s sensibility and know-how, mixed with the predator mythology, which is turned inside out here in a way that will thrill some and put off others.”
The Playlist: “‘The Predator’ knows exactly what type of picture it is. This is an action-filled, popcorn movie with no aspirations for anything more. This movie throws caution to the wind in service of creating 2-hours worth of brain-melting thrills. Black knows his genre tropes inside and out and he loves throwing out cliché setups and then subverting your expectation for the payoff. Most often, he does this for laughs. Whenever you think you’re going to see a heroic moment, the director pulls the rug out in service of a joke. This tactic never cheapens the movie, though.
Den of Geek: “Plot points are left dangling. Characters are thinned out. Things don’t really make much sense. The effects at the end look unfinished to the point of making me recall ‘The Mummy Returns.’ Most damningly of all, there’s no sign of who the author is. It certainly doesn’t feel like a Shane Black project, that much is certain. The last thing I’d expect of one of his films is something so bland, so lacking in identity, and so much a mish-mash of stuff that, bluntly, doesn’t mish-mash together very well. More than that: I can’t remember a Shane Black project so boring, and, sadly, so offensive.”
Digital Spy: As for the plot, it’s serviceable. Half-heartedly tapping into some ‘hot-topic issues’, it’s sometimes silly and doesn’t show us much we haven’t seen before, but it’s rarely boring. Issues of coherence do arise in both the narrative and action, with moments in which you might find yourself wondering if something small but vital has been cut out to explain a) why the heroes have to do this now or b) where that guy’s head has gone.”
(Photo Credit: Getty Images)