‘The Predator’ causes more laughs than screams

Phil Boulware, Staff Reporter

A frame from the trailer of ‘The Predator’. Photo Courtesy | 20th Century Fox

By Phil Boulware | Staff Reporter

This fourth installment in The Predator film series shows the audience a film about a decorated Army sniper and officer, played by Boyd Holbrook (Logan, Narcos), who lands himself into a world of trouble. He is the first to witness the return arrival of The Predator, a technologically advanced form of extraterrestrial life, that gains its name from its desire to stalk and hunt its prey. In addition to Holbrook’s character, the film features Olivia Munn (X-Men Apocalypse, Ride Along 2), as a biologist that government agent and antagonist, Sterling Brown (This Is Us, Black Panther) recruits, only to leave her for dead.

Holbrook’s autistic son receives a package sent from his dad, which is later to be what The Predator is in search of on Earth. This leads to the events that send the creature on the hunt for his property, stopping anyone that gets in his way. Holbrook and Munn’s characters enlist the help of a five former military soldiers who suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder.

This movie has an array of conflicts that will leave you convinced that the synopsis is false advertisement. In what is promoted as an action sci-fi and horror film, it falls flat on all those  aspects, but doesn’t fail at providing arguably the most laughs of any feature film this year. Most of the comedic relief is provided by crew members such as Baxley, played by Thomas Jane (Hung, The Punisher) and comedy veteran, Keegan-Michael Key (Key & Peele, Keanu).

The plot gets even more unrealistic with several twists such as a fire drill scene where the teacher leaves a child behind, alone in the class to get bullied. While Brown plays a convincing antagonist, he’s not the primary one, and one would guess incorrectly if they assumed that The Predator is the villain as well.

The film delivers much of the blood and graphic violence that is expected from the franchise, and some will view as unbearable while some will find it cliche and meaningless. The direction takes so many turns that it loses your interest halfway through, making it even more difficult to care for. Of course, it doesn’t stop there.

This time around, The Predator is now genetically modified with human DNA. The laughs provided by the film’s characters were intentionally overloaded to take focus away from an inconsistent plot with several useless characters simply there for body count purposes.

Misguided direction, horrible graphics, and poor story writing cap off this laughfest of a film which is suppose to scare its viewers. Instead of providing thrills, the audience leaves questioning what they saw and why it was ever made.