The Predator

The Predator is a 2018 American science fiction action comedy film directed by Shane Black and written by Black and Fred Dekker. It is the fourth installment in the Predator film series, following Predator (1987), Predator 2 (1990), and Predators (2010). Black had a supporting role in the original film, while John Davis returns as producer from the first three installments. The film stars Boyd Holbrook, Trevante Rhodes, Jacob Tremblay, Keegan-Michael Key, Olivia Munn, Thomas Jane, Alfie Allen, and Sterling K. Brown.

A battle in space ends up with a Predator creating a wormhole in space to evade the other ship, pilotted by a larger one (the Ultimate Predator). He reaches earth and crash lands in the woods of Mexico. Army Ranger sniper Quinn McKenna and his team are attacked by the Predator on a hostage retrieval mission. McKenna incapacitates the Predator and has its armor mailed off. Government agent Will Trager has Quinn captured and brought back to be interrogated. Traeger also takes the Predator to a lab for experimentation and observation, recruiting evolutionary biologist Casey Bracket to study it. We learn that the Predator has some human DNA, meaning at one point the alien species experiment with our DNA to enhance theirs. The Predator awakes, breaks out of its bonds, kills lab workers, but spares Case before leaving, as was then unarmed and naked (to use the decontamination chamber).

Meanwhile, the packages with the Preadtor armous that Quinn sent to a PO Box address ends up in his home address where his estranged wife Emily and their autistic but extremey clever son Rory live. Rory opens the box and works on the devices which leads the Ultimate to earth. McKenna is bussed off with a group of other government captives, including ex-Marine Gaylord “Nebraska” Williams, military veterans Coyle and Baxley, helicopter pilot Nettles, and Lynch, another ex-Marine. They see the alien escaping and take over the bus and attack the Predator and rescue Casey. When the Predator leaves, they head over to McKenna’s estranged wife, Emily, where he expects to find the Predator armor he mailed off. Rory has taken the helmet as a trick of treat mask but inadvertently leads the Predators to him.

McKenna and the others find his son just in time to stop a pair of Predator Dogs from ambushing the boy. The Predator chases them into a nearby school. They start to give the Predator’s armor back when the larger Ultimate Predator arrives and kills the first. They flee, and the second Predator sets out to retrieve the lost technology. Bracket concludes that the Predators are attempting to improve themselves with the DNA of humans and, presumably, other planets’ inhabitants. The team flees to an abandoned barn, but Traeger finds them, captures them, and shares his theory that the Predators anticipate that climate change will end their ability to retrieve human DNA for further hybridization, so they are scrambling to retrieve it before it is too late. Seeing Rory drawing a map to the spaceship, Traeger takes the boy away to go to the ship. The team escapes and goes after him with the help of a brain-damaged Predator Dog.

The Ultimate kills Lynch and tells the group using a translator that he plans to give them a head start  before it hunts them down. The Predator quickly kills off most of the team. Traeger tries to use a Predator weapon on the alien but accidentally kills himself in the process. He then takes Rory into his ship as his autism eflects an advancement in human evolution and is therefore worthwhile in the Predator hybridization, and flies away in his ship. McKenna, Nebraska, and Nettles land on the ship’s exterior, but the Predator activates a force field. This slices Nettles’ legs off, and he falls off of the ship to his death. Nebraska sacrifices himself and slides into the ship’s turbine, causing it to crash. McKenna sneaks into the ship as it crashes and attacks the Predator.

After the crash, Bracket arrives, and the three manage to overpower and finish the Predator with its own weapons. They pay their respects to their fallen comrades with trinkets representing each one before heading off. The end scene has McKenna and Rory are seen in a science lab watching the opening of cargo found on the Predator’s ship. A large gauntlet is found and attaches itself to a scientist nearby, transforming into a full body metal armour or Predator Killer suit before disarming upon not finding any Predators in the area. We assume this leads to a sequel or two when this armour will be put to use.

This movie is a mess. A violent, gory, cluttered mess. It’s bad. Really bad. The dialogues are cringe-worthy. The acting – Olivia Munn is someone I like a lot but just watch her explaining about what the Predator is doing to enhance themselves using DNA from other creatures like humans and – it’s awful! It was almost like she knew it was terrible and hence hams it up! Her facial expressions were comical. The other characters were bad too – I was rooting for the giant Predator the whole time. 5.5 outta 10!

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