THE PREDATOR – A Review by John Strange

THE PREDATOR – A Review by John Strange
The Predators, that alien race of merciless hunters, are back!  In 1987, Predator, starring Arnold Schwarzenegger and a bunch of action stars like Carl Weathers, Bill Duke, and Jesse Ventura hit the theaters pitting a spec ops team versus a creature from another planet, as smart as we are, who is treating humans as we would lions or tigers.  The film did well as the audiences got into the possibility that there is not only life on other planets but they are even nastier than we are!
Over the 30+ years since this first film, the franchise has seen five sequels; Predator 2 (1990), AVP: Alien vs. Predator (2004), Aliens vs. Predator: Requiem (2007), Predators (2010), and now The Predator (2018). The films all made money well over the price to make them.  They were not Academy Award winners (very few sci-fi films are) but were action films in every sense of the phrase.
So it is not surprising that in the new film we find a group who not only know about the creatures but are deep into researching who and what they are and how to beat them!  But they are not why you want to see this film (okay they have a cool base), the nut squad is. 
And the leader of the nut squad is Quinn McKenna (Boyd Holbrook), Army Ranger, whose team was killed by one of the creatures when they come across it while on a hostage rescue mission.  Not only does he survive the firefight but manages to make off with a gauntlet and a helmet. 
Following his return to the States, the officials declare him nuts and prepare to ship him off to a military loony bin.  On the bus, Quinn meets the men who will soon be his new team of fighters.  These guy are good at their specialties but their pasts have left them with "issues". 
The ride to the hospital/lockup does not go as planned.  The "Nut Squad" are rerouted to an undisclosed location (at least to them).  They arrive in time to get pulled into the action.  These guys, with the addition of the beautiful Dr. Casey Bracket (Olivia Munn), kick ass and make us laugh at the same time.
The action this time has more backstory than I expected.  From both sides of the action.  Or rather from all three sides, Alien, Government, and the "Nut Squad".  It is a mixture of the back stories, action, and a bushel of humor from the "squad" that make this film worth watching.  I enjoyed it.  Like its predecessors, it is no danger to any of the Academy Award contenders, but if you enjoy sci-fi action films, this is a good one!
Directed by: Shane Black
Cast: Boyd Holbrook, Trevante Rhodes, Jacob Tremblay, Keegan-Michael Key, Olivia Munn, Sterling K. Brown, Alfie Allen, Thomas Jane, Augusto Aguilera, Jake Busey, Yvonne Strahovski
MPAA Rating: R (for strong bloody violence, language throughout, and crude sexual references)
Selig Rating: A
Runtime: 107 Min.
The Selig Rating Scale:
A – Excellent movie, well worth the price.
B – Good movie
C – OK movie
D – No need to rush. Save it for a rainy day.
F – Good that I saw it on the big screen but wish I hadn't paid for it.
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