Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Predator (1987)

Theatrical Poster
Source: Wikipedia
A group of commandos are preyed on by an unknown being.

Dutch (Arnold Schwarzenegger) and his team of commandos are sent into the Central American jungles under the premise that they are there to find and rescue survivors from a helicopter crash.

They soon find that the mission is a cover up, but the deception soon becomes the least of their worries as they are hunted by a creature they cannot see or track.

Storyline-wise, there is very little to distinguish Predator for any other bog standard macho flick. Big, beefy men head into the jungle, face an unknown beast and try to get out without damaging those money-making abs.

Predator's success comes down to the creature's unveiling - or rather, the lack of it. During the first part of the film, it is an unknown beast - often heard but never seen. The camera often goes to the creature's viewpoint in thermal imaging and one brief scene unveils Predator's clawed hand. This leads to further scenes of absolute tension, as the audience is fully aware that the masked Predator could strike at any time while the commandos make their way through the concealing jungle.

Despite his recent revival in politics (which has changed his image dramatically), there was - and still is - no-one better than 'Arnie' to play the part of Dutch. His iconic status as the youngest ever Mr. Olympia (a record which he still holds), meant that there was no other person in the world who could have believably taken down such a formidable opponent. Commendations should be made to director John McTiernan who did well to cast other huge men on a similar scale to Schwarzenegger.

McTiernan would later redefine the action genre with Die Hard a year later, but this was certainly a decent place to start.


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10 comments:

  1. I'm still sadly deficient in Arnold's big action movies (I've seen Kindergarten Cop, though!), but agree, that he's such an unusual presence that it makes him a kind of instant star and credible in ways other actors can't really match. It puts in the unique position of being a male actor with an accent when actors who are successful with accents are either British or women, and he's obviously neither of those.

    I have seen, however, Predators, and that gave me a good impression of what this particular series can do.

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    1. To be honest, Arnie has done well to move his image into politics. Throughout the 90's he was known for his horribly over-sized muscles, but now he's know for being a benevolent Governor. Kudos to him.

      I need to get on and watch the rest of the series soon.

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  2. I was quite young when I first saw Predator, and didn't see it again until after being subjected to the shoddy Aliens vs. Predators. I might have enjoyed it back then, but I found myself constantly trying to suppress laughter during my second viewing. Still, I feel this movie deserves to be up there with other sci-fi classics like Alien, Blade Runner and The Terminator.

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    1. AVP sounds like a good concept (I loved Alien too) but I've heard horrible things. I can see what you mean with the laughter. I guess if you know what's coming then it could be quite amusing.

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  3. Its a classic sci fi horror. It was also the first film I saw with surround sound. I just love the line - "You're all a bunch of slack jawed faggots! This stuff will make you a sexual Tyrannosaurus. Just like me!"

    Gotta love Jesse Ventura =) "Q" will be a tough one...

    http://smurfdok.wordpress.com/2012/04/18/the-april-a-z-blogging-challenge-day-15-p/

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    1. I borrowed your quote from the film. When I post the reviews to my Facebook wall I add a quote, and that one cracked me up. Cheers!

      The Queen - easy!

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  4. Traveling through the A-Z challenge and stopping here to say hi :)Happy alphabet! Glad I found you, love movie blogs =) Not much of a Schwarzenegger fan, but this is a good one.

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    1. Thanks! Hope you enjoy the rest of the challenge.

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  5. I liked Predator, too bad Arnold couldn't reprise in Predator Versus Alien

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    1. I need to see AVP. Although the more I hear, the worse it sounds.

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