It’s been a VERY long time since we’ve seen anything new in the Predator Franchise. Was I surprised when I stumbled onto a trailer on Youtube for the newest installment that hit theaters in September 2018.
Shortly after the premiere, I heard negative feedback panning the movie and was a little surprised. I mean, the last effort to re-imagine the story line with Predators in 2010 was, at least in my opinion, a wild success.
Needless to say, I had to see for myself.
So, being laid up after a heart attack a few weeks ago, I really had no interest in going to the local theater to watch this flick. The seats are often uncomfortable, there’s way too many people, and I get exhausted walking for more than 10 minutes at a time.
Needless to say, it was an opportunity to try out one of the newly available streaming services at my disposal.
After a quick search on Google, my options were Youtube, Amazon, Google Play, and Vudu. But, I’ll get into that later.
Once I got the movie started, I settled into my favorite recliner, turned down the lights, and immersed myself into the world of aliens and gruesome gore.
Uh. I was mistaken.
Out of the gate, I thought the Predator space ship has some noticeably hokey CGI. There was something about it that just didn’t look right.
But, then the ship crashed and the blood letting began, which is always nice. Military guy, Kid. Government black ops. Yada Yada Yada.
(I don’t want to spoil it for you)
Pretty soon I was in the midst of it, and before long, I kept saying to myself, “This movie isn’t that bad. It’s actually pretty good.”
The cast of the Predator.
After I finished, I closed my laptop and took a little bit of time to reflect on what I liked and didn’t like about this newest film in the Predator franchise (when I say reflected, I mean over tacos because I was hungry).
What immediately drew me to the film was the cast. I LOVE Olivia Munn. Maybe not her politics, but as an actress, I really liked her in the Newsroom, so when I saw she was in this movie, I got excited. I also like Sterling K Brown from This is Us, and Alfie Allen from Game of Thrones and finally Thomas Jane from great movies like Deep Blue Sea and the tv show The Expanse.
As soon as the lead soldier was put on the bus transport for the mental hospital, it was clear this movie would not be like it’s predecessors. The eerie, often diabolical nature of the previous films were now lost, and were instead replaces with a healthy dose of comedic relief.
And, hey, I think it worked. They were funny.
Overall, I thought the movie was worth watching. Would I have chose it as the followup to Predators?
A resounding no.
After watching that film in 2010, I had VERY high hopes for what was to come. But, in grand Hollywood style these days, they had to go and screw it all up.
I really didn’t care for the plot itself. It was fine. But, the idea that the Predators are taking the best of human DNA so they can use it to evolve is rather far fetched. To add insult to injury, then they try to blame global warming on the Predator’s increased interest in the human race.
I mean, are we really going to blame everything on Global Warming?
By the end of the story, I was left with the same unsettled feeling that often happens with franchise movies. They leave us on a hook (Predator Killer), but there is no way to know for sure that they will follow up with a sequel. You would be better off to make movies standalone, yet still loosely tied together. This is what I try to do with all of my novels – each book can stand on its own, yet they are always tied into trilogies, and then all trilogies are part of a much bigger macro universe story line that will, hopefully, one day be finished (when I’m about 90).
Scenes from the Predator.
In the end, I thought the movie was pretty good. Did I pay too much? Absolutely. Would I think twice about paying for a movie again, or would I wait for it to come out on Netflix or cable tv?
There are a few franchises, good or bad, that I simply must watch as soon as they come out – however I can do it, however much it costs.
The Predator franchise happens to be one of those.
In the end, it was worth my time and I would recommend it to anyone who likes these types of movies and wants a good laugh.
Because it certainly was funny.
But, now, lets go back to how I watched this movie and talk a little bit about the different options available today.
I settled on Amazon’s streaming service over Youtube, Google Play, and some site called Vudu. Though, I will say, if I wanted to purchase the video, Vudu and Google Play had it for $9.99. Amazon had it for $19.99, and Youtube only offered a rental price.
Just watching it cost me $5.99, which is a few dollars off of a regular movie ticket in my area. If you live in the big city, it’s probably cheaper to buy it at Google Play than to watch it in the theaters.
I’ve “rented” movies at Amazon before, so it’s the one I went with (I also have a bias against giving money to Google).
But, I have to say, if this is the product they are making available today to stream movies and tv shows, I can see why there is so much pirating with Kodi boxes and torrents these days (people still torrent, right?)
Don’t get me wrong. We have come a long, long way in the means by which we consume entertainment. I remember renting movies at the local Blockbuster. I remember when Netflix sent you DVDs in the mail (believe it or not, they still do that). I also remember watching VHS tapes, and a buddy of mine in the military was all the rave about laser disks (those never got off the ground, did they?)
So, to discredit the ability to simply pay $6 and watch at home is a little short sighted.
But, then again, we’re not quite there yet are we? I mean, the Predator was only available to stream online after it was out of theaters and available on DVD. So, if you compare it to my local Redbox, it costs $1.75 to rent the DVD and only $4.99 to stream it (so Amazon just ripped me off – great).
But, I think the movie industry has really missed the boat. In fact, I think the entertainment industry as a whole has been left behind – they have really missed an opportunity because they were ill equipment and tied to a doomed and outdated system of distribution.
Hey, I think there is a lot to be had for going to a theater and watching a movie. The popcorn, the candy, the artery clogging hot dogs. It’s great. But, if theaters capitalized on offering streaming as well, I think they would not be going the way of the dodo bird.
I’m not a big fan of Netflix, though I do appreciate when they release a new season, they drop the entire season at once so we can watch it when we want. They don’t limit the distribution by dragging us along.
Most of the time these days, I do not watch a tv show while it’s airing week after week. Instead, I will simply wait until the entire season is over and then watch it on demand as I want to watch it.
So, in the end, streaming was a great alternative to theater viewing. Especially in my case, where I’m currently tied to my recliner.
And, in hindsight, I will be checking out other alternatives instead of taking Google’s word for it. I never dreamed Redbox had a streaming service!
What about the Predator and the future of the franchise? Given the state of Hollywood these days and their imbecilic propensity to screw things up, I would give the future of the Predator franchise a 40% chance of coming out with anything worth wild going forward.
But, hey, that’s just my opinion.
Olivia Munn with a gun. Can’t get better than that.
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Have you watched the Predator yet? What did you think? Tell me all about it in the comments below.
But be forewarned. Do so and you’ll never see the world the same again.