Film Review: Adrien Brody’s ‘Predators’ Unmemorably Lulls Through the Expected Motions
CHICAGO – Good films deliver on their promise. Great films up the ante even more. In this version of the long “Predators” franchise from director Nimrod Antal (“Control,” “Armored,” “Vacancy”) and more-known producer Robert Rodriguez (“Grindhouse,” “Sin City”), we merely see more of the same: just enough to get us by but not nearly enough to make us care.
The curiously cast film stars the I’m-trying-to-be-badass Brody as he attempts to fill the more authentic shoes of Arnold Schwarzenegger from 1987’s “Predator”.
The battle-hardened and mercenary-turned Brody is self-elected as the team leader of the humans as they wage war against alien predators out of necessity. While the humans are fighting for their lives, the predators are simply butchering for sport. The aliens merely want to improve their abilities as the harbringers of death and they use humans as their guinea pigs.
|Read Adam Fendelman’s full review of “Predators”.|
The film’s most effective storytelling element blows its wad early on. Brody and the other trained killers are parachuted onto an alien planet in a state of frenzy and confusion. Though it’s not the first time this franchise has dangled such a plot carrot as a way to successfully build suspense (think Vietnam confusion in an earlier film), the payoff isn’t sustained throughout the story.
Once the big reveal is blown courtesy of a relative cameo by Laurence Fishburne, the rest of the story delivers exactly what you’ve seen before and nothing more. While the film isn’t en epic fail that does deliver on expectations at a rudimentary level, these filmmakers missed their opportunity to make daring decisions. Especially by the time you’ve made so many films in the same franchise, you’d better be blowing us out of the water with at least something brand-spanking new.
Image credit: Rico Torres