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Author Topic: Predator + 20 Years: It Still Holds Up Remarkably Well  (Read 1502 times)
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ATB
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« on: September 12, 2007, 06:55:55 PM »

I'm rewatching Predator, one of the seminal Arnie pics, for the first time in at least 15 years- surprisingly, it holds up remarkably well.

It didn't seem to start out that way as the beginning firefight are typical 80's bravado and unrealism (it's amazing that realism in films have become so important to me- possibly to a larger audience- this is my only concern right now for Indy IV- as things that occur in the other three are preposterous, but the films are so good and the character so great that they are not even noticed let alone dwelled upon- I hope I can view the new film with willing eyes) and I thought whoa this is not gonna be good. 

However, once the focus shifts to a survival film, it's quite remarkable.

Great cast from Arnie on down. Billie is memorable. Carl Weathers as Dylan is a great foil.  Bill Duke as Mac is great (he was awesome in Commando too- though I don't think that film would hold up as well as this one- of course, I could be wrong there too). Jesse Ventura as Blaine.  Even Richard Chaves as Poncho does a great job.

It's also great to see Arnold in his prime and what an absolute bad ass he was.  I worshipped the guy as a kid and would love, once his flirtation with politics is over, for him to do one more film...perhaps even reuniting with some of the guys he worked with in this movie and others as your typical over the hill group of former elite army guys going into action one more time.

I'm still able to get lost in this movie and the setting and the action so, even after all this time, it gets 4 stars from me.

If you haven't seen it in a while- do take the time.

PS: Edit: Maybe we should start a GT cinema club to pull some of the old stallone, willis, schwartzennegger and other action films out of moth balls and watch them again together and discuss. What say you?
« Last Edit: September 12, 2007, 06:57:52 PM by ATB » Logged
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« Reply #1 on: September 12, 2007, 07:09:16 PM »

Quote from: ATB on September 12, 2007, 06:55:55 PM

  Even Richard Chaves as Poncho does a great job.

Didn't you mean to say... "Especially Richard Chaves as Poncho does a fantastic job!"

But, despite that one error - I would have to say I totally agree with you.  Predator holds up remarkably well, and is still a great movie to put in and watch for me. 

Very good call there, ATB.
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« Reply #2 on: September 12, 2007, 07:12:43 PM »

I haven't seen this since it came out in theaters.  I need to fix that.

I loved playing as a Predator in AvP2.
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« Reply #3 on: September 12, 2007, 07:25:51 PM »

Yeah, it was a classic movie and it does hold up well. I found this out recently when I watched it due to it becoming a Rifftrax movie. biggrin

But yeah, still a good movie especially considering its age.
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« Reply #4 on: September 12, 2007, 07:29:35 PM »

I watched Predator again last week, still an absolutely kick ass action film. There's a Director's Cut of Commando out next week, I have to admit I'm curious to see what the differences are.

We were up in British Columbia last month and discovered that First Blood was filmed in Hope, which wasn't far from where we were. Took a little drive around the town and across the bridge featured in the beginning, they're having a 25th anniversary First Blood Festival deal there next month. It's still one of my favourite and I think best of the early 80s action films.
« Last Edit: September 12, 2007, 07:32:21 PM by Simon » Logged
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« Reply #5 on: September 12, 2007, 08:42:40 PM »

Quote from: Lockdown on September 12, 2007, 07:09:16 PM

Quote from: ATB on September 12, 2007, 06:55:55 PM

  Even Richard Chaves as Poncho does a great job.

Didn't you mean to say... "Especially Richard Chaves as Poncho does a fantastic job!"


Maybe not especially, but I certainly didn't mean 'even'. He was excellent.  Perhaps It should have just read:

"Richard Chaves as Poncho does a fantastic Job!"

Good catch.
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« Reply #6 on: September 12, 2007, 08:46:56 PM »

I still watch this one regularly. Good lord is it a clean, efficient monster of an action film. The Austrian Oak on down the line are all uniformly awesome. My sister loves it too and when she was watching it one day, a guy friend of hers walked past. She asked him to come watch it with her and he said he didn't like. She and I both remain puzzled by that to this day.

How can any guy not love "Predator"?
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« Reply #7 on: September 12, 2007, 09:38:24 PM »

I looked this up the other day when I was thinking about how old Arnie is now. He was 47 when he made Predator even. I wish I was in half a good as shape now that Im 38.
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« Reply #8 on: September 12, 2007, 10:07:13 PM »

Funny I was watching the end of Rambo III (or was it II?) last night. The one in Vietnam. My first thought was what an utter piece of crap it was. My second thought was why don't they make movies like this anymore?  Roll Eyes
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« Reply #9 on: September 12, 2007, 10:54:51 PM »

II was in Vietnam.  And supposedly Sly is working on Rambo 4.
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« Reply #10 on: September 12, 2007, 10:59:48 PM »

Commando doesn't hold up at all short of being an out and out comedy these days.  Predator was directed by John McTiernen in his prime (Predator followed by Die Hard followed by Hunt for Red October).  Commando was directed by Mark Lester who's basically a Movie of the Week caliber director. 

I've always though Predator 2 was kind of under-appreciated.  Very stylish with some really good action scenes. 
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« Reply #11 on: September 12, 2007, 11:00:43 PM »

Quote from: Laner on September 12, 2007, 10:54:51 PM

And supposedly Sly is working on Rambo 4.

There is are a couple of trailers for it already.  Might now want to watch at work though- looks like he is pushing the boundaries of the R-rating. 
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« Reply #12 on: September 13, 2007, 12:21:48 AM »

Quote from: Kevin Grey on September 12, 2007, 11:00:43 PM

Quote from: Laner on September 12, 2007, 10:54:51 PM

And supposedly Sly is working on Rambo 4.

There is are a couple of trailers for it already.  Might now want to watch at work though- looks like he is pushing the boundaries of the R-rating. 

Here's one.  I can't wait- I just watched First Blood Part 2 the other night- good times.
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« Reply #13 on: September 13, 2007, 03:17:31 AM »

I think Predator just tops the original Terminator as my favorite Arnold flick. The scene where Mac gets the three dots on his head and when Pancho stands alone on the log where high marks of 80's action cinema. Plus, the predator itself is just one cool ass monster.
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« Reply #14 on: September 13, 2007, 03:30:03 AM »

yea it does hold up really well - i can go back and watch it and it just doesnt seem old at all (aside from a lack of OMG mother-f&@%ing special fx and cgi for their own sake!!!)

still a classic

and im sorry - but in the arnie / stallone / willis comparison there IS no challenge - bruce rules all
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« Reply #15 on: September 13, 2007, 03:54:00 AM »

Quote from: Kevin Grey on September 12, 2007, 10:59:48 PM

I've always though Predator 2 was kind of under-appreciated.  Very stylish with some really good action scenes. 

I think after the opening gunfight there's little about it to like. But that opening was way cool. I still have the Dark Horse comics this was based off of, where Dutch's brother is a New York cop fighting a predator during the hottest summer on record, and it remains hella sweet.
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« Reply #16 on: September 13, 2007, 04:44:32 AM »

Quote from: whiteboyskim on September 13, 2007, 03:54:00 AM

Quote from: Kevin Grey on September 12, 2007, 10:59:48 PM

I've always though Predator 2 was kind of under-appreciated.  Very stylish with some really good action scenes. 

I think after the opening gunfight there's little about it to like. But that opening was way cool. I still have the Dark Horse comics this was based off of, where Dutch's brother is a New York cop fighting a predator during the hottest summer on record, and it remains hella sweet.

Haven't seen it in years but I thought there were quite a few really nice actions sequences toward the end, especially the meat locker sequence.  Plus a Bill Paxton cameo!

I think I bought it cheap on DVD years ago.  Might have to see if it still holds up. 
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« Reply #17 on: September 13, 2007, 07:15:05 AM »

Quote from: Kevin Grey on September 13, 2007, 04:44:32 AM

Quote from: whiteboyskim on September 13, 2007, 03:54:00 AM

Quote from: Kevin Grey on September 12, 2007, 10:59:48 PM

I've always though Predator 2 was kind of under-appreciated.  Very stylish with some really good action scenes. 

I think after the opening gunfight there's little about it to like. But that opening was way cool. I still have the Dark Horse comics this was based off of, where Dutch's brother is a New York cop fighting a predator during the hottest summer on record, and it remains hella sweet.

Haven't seen it in years but I thought there were quite a few really nice actions sequences toward the end, especially the meat locker sequence.  Plus a Bill Paxton cameo!

I think I bought it cheap on DVD years ago.  Might have to see if it still holds up. 

and there was the Alien cameo too.
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« Reply #18 on: September 13, 2007, 12:31:00 PM »

Quote from: Ralph-Wiggum on September 13, 2007, 03:17:31 AM

when Pancho stands alone on the log where high marks of 80's action cinema.

It was Billy, n00b.
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« Reply #19 on: September 13, 2007, 12:47:24 PM »

Quote from: ATB on September 13, 2007, 12:31:00 PM

Quote from: Ralph-Wiggum on September 13, 2007, 03:17:31 AM

when Pancho stands alone on the log where high marks of 80's action cinema.

It was Billy, n00b.

Damn - I couldn't remember his name was just going to call him "the Indian guy", but I figured if anyone was named Pancho that would be him. Guess I should've checked imdb.  icon_redface
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« Reply #20 on: September 13, 2007, 02:14:51 PM »

Quote from: Ralph-Wiggum on September 13, 2007, 12:47:24 PM

Damn - I couldn't remember his name was just going to call him "the Indian guy", but I figured if anyone was named Pancho that would be him. Guess I should've checked imdb.  icon_redface

I always refer to him as 'that dead indian dude'.  then there's dead white dude 1, dead white dude 2, dead white dude with a chain gun, dead Action Jackson guy, dead black dude, etc etc.
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« Reply #21 on: September 13, 2007, 06:52:40 PM »

Quote from: CeeKay on September 13, 2007, 02:14:51 PM

Quote from: Ralph-Wiggum on September 13, 2007, 12:47:24 PM

Damn - I couldn't remember his name was just going to call him "the Indian guy", but I figured if anyone was named Pancho that would be him. Guess I should've checked imdb.  icon_redface

I always refer to him as 'that dead indian dude'.  then there's dead white dude 1, dead white dude 2, dead white dude with a chain gun, dead Action Jackson guy, dead black dude, etc etc.

I always refer to you as the unfunny white guy.
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« Reply #22 on: September 13, 2007, 10:38:06 PM »

I thought that was me.
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« Reply #23 on: September 13, 2007, 11:42:40 PM »

Quote from: ATB on September 13, 2007, 06:52:40 PM

Quote from: CeeKay on September 13, 2007, 02:14:51 PM

Quote from: Ralph-Wiggum on September 13, 2007, 12:47:24 PM

Damn - I couldn't remember his name was just going to call him "the Indian guy", but I figured if anyone was named Pancho that would be him. Guess I should've checked imdb.  icon_redface

I always refer to him as 'that dead indian dude'.  then there's dead white dude 1, dead white dude 2, dead white dude with a chain gun, dead Action Jackson guy, dead black dude, etc etc.

I always refer to you as the unfunny white guy.

I'm not allowed to post what I refer to you as  Tongue
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« Reply #24 on: August 22, 2013, 04:48:38 AM »

ATB called the Expendables plot before it happened  ninja
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« Reply #25 on: August 22, 2013, 07:18:54 AM »

Quote from: Harkonis on August 22, 2013, 04:48:38 AM

ATB called the Expendables plot before it happened  ninja

ATB is Sylvester Stallone.  icon_eek
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« Reply #26 on: August 22, 2013, 01:33:15 PM »

Quote from: Ralph-Wiggum on September 13, 2007, 03:17:31 AM

I think Predator just tops the original Terminator as my favorite Arnold flick. The scene where Mac gets the three dots on his head and when Pancho stands alone on the log where high marks of 80's action cinema. Plus, the predator itself is just one cool ass monster.

The scene where <living-impaired native american person of male gender> was standing on the log was where this movie lost all credibility for me in the theater.  Huge build up to a dramatic moment which instead turned out to be a weak scream in the background of the next shot was just lame to me.  I had a hard time liking the movie after that.  The final showdown helped turn it around for me, though.
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« Reply #27 on: August 22, 2013, 03:59:21 PM »

I liked that scene because it built up to show that he was a badass and might be able to do something, then you get shown that the predator is just that much better.  Worked for me
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« Reply #28 on: August 22, 2013, 04:43:53 PM »

Yeah, it's supposed to establish, with no room for doubt or interpretation, that taking on the Predator mano a mano is futile, making it very clear why Schwarzenegger spends most of the rest of the movie fleeing and/or rigging the odds.
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« Reply #29 on: August 22, 2013, 05:02:02 PM »

I had just graduated from college in May 1987, and my college paper arts editor buddy let me tag along (he got two free passes) to an early critic's screening of the movie in Washington D.C. in 1987. We definitely dug it, and aside from a couple late green screen type (I think) FX sequences you'd probably do digitally today, I think it holds up well because it was filmed on location and so much of the movie was more about stunt work and "practical" special effects, explosions etc.

At the time, we thought it was at least a moderate evolution for Arnie from say, Commando (1985). A little bit less wisecracking, and the screenplay seemed to understand that you're better off not giving Arnie any long dialogue sequences. That's in spite of the early scenes making you think this IS just another "Arnie blows everybody up" movie. Then the Predator turns into something much more interesting/entertaining, though a cynic might argue it's just a sci-fi slasher movie with the Predator as the slasher.

Many critics then complained about what the Predator looked like when finally unmasked, complaining he looked like a crab or something. Then when I saw Independence Day in 1996, I remember laughing when Will Smith rips the alien's helmet off and it looked like... a Predator.  icon_razz

It's fun to see screenwriter/director Shane Black (screen writer of Lethal Weapon, director of Iron Man 3) in one of his few acting roles in this. It's sad the original actor playing Predator (Kevin Peter Hall: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kevin_Peter_Hall) died so young at 35.

Still, amongst Arnie's non James Cameron-directed work, it's one of my favorites. I generally can't resist watching it when it shows up on cable.  icon_smile It's a shame the subsequent Arnie/John McTiernan collaboration (The Last Action Hero) didn't really work, and that McTiernan's later legal problems in 2006 put him in prison and derailed his directing career.

He was so hot after Predator (1987), Die Hard (1988) and The Hunt for Red October (1990). In 1990, I would've said McTiernan and Cameron were the hottest directors in terms of action films. His last five movies after Die Hard With a Vengeance (1996) through 2003, other than maybe The Thomas Crown Affair remake (1999), didn't do well.

McTiernan is supposedly scheduled to be released from prison in April 2014.
« Last Edit: August 22, 2013, 05:16:05 PM by Blackjack » Logged

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« Reply #30 on: August 22, 2013, 08:55:42 PM »

Quote from: TiLT on August 22, 2013, 04:43:53 PM

Yeah, it's supposed to establish, with no room for doubt or interpretation, that taking on the Predator mano a mano is futile, making it very clear why Schwarzenegger spends most of the rest of the movie fleeing and/or rigging the odds.

I understand what it was trying to do.  It was clear from the set up what was going to happen.  Having the character die off in the distance with a lame sound was not a surprise in any way.

Killing him off screen was a weaker choice than, say, having him face down the Predator and watching the hunter pick him up, break him and toss him casually from the log (or wherever the showdown was happening).  This would have achieved the same result, but would have both upped the Predator threat and not cheapened an otherwise cool character.
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