Prey Movie 2022 Scene Predator getting ready to leave his cave to hunt

Prey [2022]

I know this one is kind of a no-brainer but I do want to share my thoughts on it. Prey is the latest addition to the Predator franchise following Naru, a young Comanche woman who will have to use all her strength and wits to survive “the hunt”. If you feel triggered by any of this, I understand that. The original movie was oozing with testosterone and had a totally different vibe. It will go down in history as one of those timeless classics you can watch anytime. Anytime, anytime. And it’s also one of my favorite movies.

Predator was an underdog, a movie that you felt had no right being that good. Everything about it sort of clicked without too much work. Pure fucking instinct. Prey is a carefully thought-out and masterfully executed movie that tries to satisfy fans, studios, and current cultural norms. When you consider all of this, it turned out pretty great. I think that the script was its weakest point. Sure, you can watch the entire movie with a Comanche dub but it’s much more important what’s said and not in what language. I think that the word I’m looking for is uninspired.

Luckily, juicy action, ominous atmosphere, and superb visuals make up for that. Plus we’ve got the motherfucking Predator back in action, what more to want? Ultimately, if you already decided you don’t like this concept you will find things to support your conviction. And there’s nothing wrong with that. I did the same thing with Blade Runner 2049 and then did a 180 on it. I think you should lower your expectations and just dive straight into it. Accept that it won’t come close to the original but it will be a damn fine watch. Who knows, it might even surprise you.

We will also get the opportunity to see some breathtaking nature shots. Forests, rivers, and waterfalls all feel wild and untouched. It’s because the story is taking place in the early 18th century and capitalism is still waiting patiently. Opposite of that environment we have this burned-out forest that also looks amazing. I loved that part of the movie, it felt like a living nightmare. And I thought that the director Dan Trachtenberg would have trouble shooting outside since his only movie up until now was 10 Cloverfield Lane.

The whole Comanche thing was a brilliant idea, previously seen in a 2019 fan short film Warrior: Predator by filmmaker Chris R. Notarize. These two could be unrelated as Prey was in development for quite a while. Amber Midthunder was excellent as Naru and I just wish they gave her more to work with. The same can be said for Dakota Beavers playing her brother Taabe. And despite my initial amazement, no, the chief is not Tom Araya of Slayer but Julian Black Antelope. Also, Dane DiLiegro gave us a new, much more menacing predator who moves with conviction and desire to kill.

Predator purists will either dismiss Prey as utterly unbelievable and catering to the woke culture. Or they’ll say the other sequels are so bad this is the best one we’ve got so far. I tend to disagree. Predator 2 was really a fun movie despite all its flaws capturing the spirit of the nineties with ease. Now, The Predator from 2018 was comically bad which was surprising considering that Shane Black was back. And Predators was at least action-packed and set on a distant planet. So, here’s my ranking of the predator franchise.

  1. Predator [1987]
  2. Predator 2 [1990]
  3. Prey [2022]
  4. Predators [2010]
  5. The Predator [2018]

I just want to go back to that unbelievable part and address something. It is true that the finale and some scenes did require a suspension of belief and you simply cannot deny that. However, I don’t think that this made the movie a lot worse. You already knew that things like this were going to happen. This is a mainstream movie, after all. The bigger problem is this vanilla-ass approach to character development.

A young girl wants to prove herself so she sets out to hunt this monster. Along with her good boy. To be clear, by vanilla-ass I meant that they did the safest thing possible and went for the classical approach. The characters here are pretty bland and apart from Naru and Taabe, you really don’t care about what happens to them. And even that could be attributed to two charismatic actors giving it all she’s got. Just compare that fucking chopper ride from the original to this entire movie.

You feel like these people had no lives before this movie and would go on to have no lives after. And I need to stop now before this turns into a rant. Finally, I want to commend the stripped-down storytelling streamlined for action and suspense. This balanced out the negatives to a degree and helped make Prey worth watching. Plus, it’s just ninety minutes long.

Director: Dan Trachtenberg

Writers: Patrick Aison, Dan Trachtenberg, Jim Thomas

Cast: Amber Midthunder, Dakota Beavers, Dane DiLiegro, Stormee Kipp, Julian Black Antelope

Fun Facts: The mask the predator wears in this movie is made from the skull of a River Ghost from Predators [2010].


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