"He's using the trees." Thirty years later, "Predator" holds an irresistible sway, due in no small part to its level of restraint: if Werner Herzog directed an action film, it might look something like this. As the Predator's artillery lights up the nighttime jungle like a fireworks display from hell, Arnold Schwarzenegger must literally become a mud-caked earth totem in order to stop this interstellar force.
This is one of Arnold's best films, showing that not even an invisible alien can defeat Schwarzenegger. John McTiernan just had a knack for making great action thrillers and this one even delivers on the gore in a great way. Also great creature design from the incredible Stan Winston.
Such a wonderful sense of a creepy fucking atmosphere. Incredibly tense with some Peckinpah like action scenes and a surprisingly slow build to the monster. This was one badass, fucking entertaining film!
McTiernan starts this film with the best genre filmmaking (and one of the few American film acknowledgements) of Reagan-era CIA kingmaking in Latin America. He does not lead up to this as the main message. That's where it STARTS. From there, McT goes even further, constantly redefining who is the technologically superior force, the invisible guerrilla, and the well-armed savage.
Predator seems to me to be the most Herzogian action film of the blockbuster era. That filmmaker's familiar theme of humanity's confrontation with nature is explicitly brought to mind as the high-tech military figures are slowly decimated by the 'jungle come alive'. Schwazenegger must disavow his very humanity and become Nature in order to survive the Predator, who is as much the Earth itself as an alien visitor.
3 1/2 out of 5 stars. Over the top fun with all the ridiculousness you can eat. Easily one of Schwarzenegger's better movies. The set up is actually pretty cool & the dialogue is fun but for some reason it goes off the rails for me when Mac loses his shit & talks to the moon after Jesse Ventura dies. Its like there was a deleted scene where they were fucking in the shower at a B&B or something that explains it all..
8 - One of the manliest (and "eightiest") films ever made. It hasn't aged as well as something like "The Thing", or even "Alien", but it's still a damn fine sci-fi slasher and one very worth seeking out.