Predator (1986)

(Second or third viewing, On TV, December 2016) I’m reasonably sure that I’ve watched Predator at least twice, and one of those was within the past ten years. But since I can’t find any mention of it in my files, here are a few notes: Even today, the film works pretty well. The transition from a military action picture to Science Fiction is handled well, and director John McTiernan has to be commended for its restraints before unleashing all stops. The cast is an embarrassment of riches, and nearly everyone will note the presence of two actors who would go one to become governor of their states. The machismo gets intense at times (it’s a good thing that Elpidia Carrillo is in the picture at all, otherwise this would have been an all-male production) but it fits within the film’s unassuming genre aspirations. The special effects are a bit primitive, but they get the job done and pale in comparison to Arnold Schwarzenneger’s muscular performance. A truly bad image quality (thanks to ultra-low bitrate encoding on a standard-definition channel) couldn’t stop me from enjoying the film. Never mind the sequel; this is one of the defining action movies of the eighties.

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