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July 9, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

While its producers are hoping to revive an old franchise that originated with John McTiernan’s 1987 sci-fi thriller starring Arnold Schwarzenegger (Predator, singular), several critics would just as soon send it back to its grave. The New York Times‘s Stephen Holden is one of them. While the filmmakers seem to be intent on creating a “karmic morality tale whose human predators finally get their comeuppance,” he writes, “this chaotic stew of fire, blood, mud and explosives is so devoid of terror and suspense that any metaphorical analysis is rendered moot.” In the San Francisco Chronicle, Amy Biancolli summarizes the plot, then observes, “None of this is scary, and nothing makes sense.” And Christopher Kelly concludes in the Dallas Morning News: “Predators mostly just suggests a bunch of grown-up men playing with toys and not bothering to invite the rest of us into their circle.” But Tirdad Derakhshani in the Philadelphia Inquirer assures “Predator purists” that they “have nothing to fear: This is a worthy follow-up.” Lisa Kennedy in the Denver Post agrees, calling it “a stylish, lean and, well, familiar outing.” And Michael O’Sullivan in the Washington Post suspects that the filmmakers really want us to take the whole affair as an inside joke. “In the end,” he concludes, “the film’s perverse party spirit wins out over any pretentious hoo-ha.”

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