action movie freak    
The Predator 2018 movie poster showing a predator's hand gripping a predator face mask with dreadlocks in back, the eyes of the mask are glowing orange against the poster's orange background and a spinal column hangs down suggested the skull is intact in the masks representing predator on predator violence. The predators hand protrudes from a leather oir metal cuff/sleeve and a very sharp pointed blade tool is extended from the cuff along and beyond the top of the hand. The movie title THE PREDATOR is in the lower left corner in black and the tag line reads The Head has Evolved.



"They're large, they're fast, and fucking you up is their idea of tourism."

(2018)  Director:  Shane Black

Shane Black (Hawkins in Predator and the author of Lethal Weapon, The Last Boy Scout, Last Action Hero, and The Long Kiss Goodnight) aimed to re-start the Predator with this Super Soldier movie with a really cool ending. Co-written with a college classmate Fred Dekker, this movie has almost as much humor as it does Action. The Gnarly Kills are off the chart. From the opening in space, which puts you back in that "danger zone" feeling from the original movie, to the monster-making ending, you're going to love this action-packed killfest.  Bring on the sequels!



  QUINN, his "Team of "Loonies", a Boy Genius, and an Evolutionary Biologist

The Predator 2018 cast Boyd Holbrook as Quinn
Boyd Holbrook
The Predator 2018 cast Jacob Tremblay as Rory
Jacob Tremblay
The Predator 2018 cast Trevante Rhodes as Nebraska
Trevante Rhodes
The Predator 2018 cast Keegan-Michael Key as Coyle
Keegan-Michael Key
The Predator 2018 cast Thomas Jane as Baxley
Thomas Jane
The Predator 2018 cast Alfie Allen as Lynch
Alfie Allen
The Predator 2018 cast Augusto Aguilera as Nettles

Augusto Aguilera
The Predator 2018 cast Olivia Munn as Dr. Brackett
Olivia Munn

    The General, the Fugitive Predator, and the Mega Predator


camera angle of the Mega Predator looking down on the Fugitive Predator

The Predator 2018 cast Sterling K. Brown as Agent Traeger
Sterling K. Brown

The Predator 2018 six foot nine-and-a-half-inches tall Brian A. Prince plays the predators in The Predator
(6' 9.5")

 Brian A. Prince

The Predator 2018 Mega aka Assassin Predator
MEGA aka


The Predator 2018 Rogue aka Fugitive Predator      ROGUE aka



Like the original movie, Predator, this movie opens in space . . . 

But it's not the 1980s anymore and the special effects are SO much better it makes the opening of the first movie look like a TV Show. We see a rip created in the fabric of space as an alien ship (being chased by another alien ship) passes through it to narrowly escape by leaping to some other location. When the ship makes it through to its destination, we realize it's Earth when it collides with a satellite. One engine sputters and there are sparks in the cockpit dashboard. Since the ship is damaged, we know it's going to crash.

Inside the ship, we see a Predator. It has that Bad-Ass, heavy stomping walk even on the spaceship.  And like the original movie, the alien ship jettisons something (the Predator in an escape pod) as it descends.


In the next scene, night has fallen and we hear jungle noises. There's nothing more Predator than that! It put me right back in the original movie feeling. We see a human eye in foliage. This is our hero's Big Dog Entrance. Pretty freakin' cool, I might add. Of course, he's military, in camouflage. When he communicates with his team members, it's clear his unit is on a mission, but what they are also doing is placing bets on whether a drug cartel has executed hostages. Pretty cold.

The Predator sniper eye in the jungle

Chasing drug cartels turns out to be a throwaway plot line just to place the soldiers somewhere so you learn what the hero does and so you can have them in a jungle setting. You think they're active military on a hostage-rescue mission. When the Predator's escape pod crashes into an all-too-close powerline tower, the camouflaged soldier is forced to stand up and run for cover and the phrase "the jungle came alive" really hits here. Part of what makes Super Soldier movies so cool is that they do shit like this. Like Rambo in the wall of mud, until he was forced to stand up, he was invisible.

Actor Boyd Holbrook, who plays the lead soldier "Quinn," is 6' 2" in real life. I was glad they had some big guys/muscle in this movie (meaning not someone Adrien-Brody skinny). Quinn narrowly escapes the crashing pod. The sight of green blood and the Predator signature noise add to making it feel like the original movie. They even use that birds-fleeing-noise from the reveal of hanging bodies from the first movie. I thought it was a great choice. The prevalence of sounds from the first movie to convey the same emotion in a scene (danger, fear, a warning, etc.), works like shorthand [2].

A missing soldier, Haines, is revealed— hung upside down by his feet in a tree by the Predator who crashed. It wasted no time killing and uses Haines as bait. The special effects, like the Predator's cloaking, are the same—recognizable yet updated. I LOVED that. Quinn recovered the Predator's mask and arm weapon (wrist gun/blade gauntlet); weird, cool weapons are another part of the Predator appeal. When Quinn tries pn the arm band weapon, it conforms to fit his arm. After the Predator fires at Quinn, the weapon discharges, firing at the Predator and protecting Quinn. New twist. We even get a repeat of "Those eyes" as The Predator's eyes open when the blood pours down on him from Haine's severed torso above. This is the first Gnarly Kill . . . more like a re-kill! It growls. Quinn runs.

The Predator lies on the groud as blood pour over him making his eyes stand out


Nobody can over praise the music from the first movie. Proof of that is how many other shows used or emulated it after that. The signature "danger" melody when Arnold had to run for it mark when Quinn gets up to flee. Military march music as a helicopter lands (like when Dutch and his men arrive on the beach), makes us feel like we are  back 'in the shit'/on high alert. The familiarity (if you've watched the first movie a hundred+ times like me) communicates so much. Black Ops looking soldiers jump out followed by what can only be the head honchos in street clothes. Right away we realize they know it's a "bug hunt," and they are there to deal with the crash. When Quinn runs away from the choppa, rather than joining them, we are left to wonder what's their relationship, and, when he asks a villager to mail the helmet/mask he found, to whom it was sent.

A small metal ball ejected to Quinn by the arm band, turns out to be a cloaking effect device that has a chicken-wire-looking pattern (like we saw on the Predator before it got hit and covered with blood), another cool advance. Quinn swallows the cloaking ball but we know it'll be back.

Next, we meet his family. His kid is autistic. We get to see him receive the package of the arm band and mask. You just know he's going to figure it out somehow. Like you know he's going to find a way to use the "mask" for Halloween.


"God makes shitty people." Like government flunkies who want to cover up the Alien encounter Quinn had, so they give him a psych eval and load him on a bus along with rag tag crew calling themselves "Group Two". They all have psychological problems, but are, at least, ex-military, which makes you wonder what crazy shit they will do later. It's an interesting twist that this is Quinn's new "team," and that the movie is not about him and his initial crew. The dumb dirty jokes and Camaraderie in the bus feels a lot like the helicopter flight into the jungle in the first movie.


Enter Olivia Munn, as Biologist Dr. Brackett. Olivia is very good in this scientist role. Loved this nod to the original title of the 1987 screenplay (more Predator lore):

DR. BRACKETT   Why do you call it "The Predator"
AGENT TRAEGER   It's a nickname. You know, the data suggests it tracks its prey. Exploits weakness.
  Seems to . . . well, enjoy it. Like a game.
DR. BRACKETT   That's not a predator. That's a sports hunter.
DR. BRACKETT   A predator kills its prey to survive. I mean, what you're describing is more like a bass fisherman.
AGENT TRAEGER   Well, we took a vote. Predator's cooler, right?
  Fuck yeah.

And when she tells the sedated Predator "You are one beautiful motherfucker." Predator fans eat this shit up. She catches on fast, too, and realizes that because Quinn knows about the Predator, they are going to try to silence him. They also use "Get to the choppa" with a creative twist.

The Predator alien ship flies over Florida


It's hilarious to me (living in Miami) that the pursuing enemy alien ship finally finds its way to where the Predator ship ended up, Earth, but, specifically, it flies over Florida. Explains a lot. Especially since Dr. Brackett asks, when they reveal the Predator has human DNA, "You wanna know if someone fucked an alien." Probably a Florida Man LOL. #funnynotfunny

Baxley is brave, though. She takes a tranquilizer gun and heads in the direction of the green blood trail of the wounded Predator. Group Two gets transportation and then, company arrives. Too bad Baxley shoots herself in the foot literally. Kinda misogyny, kinda hilarious that she is not caught by Quinn when he offers to catch her if she jumps off the top of the vehicle into his arms.  More hilarity ensues until Quinn's kid goes trick or treating.


Watching this movie again in 2023, I realized that just five years ago, when the movie came out in 2018, school shootings weren't the huge national problem they are now. Not saying there weren't a lot of shootings before this but you can see when it skyrocketed on the chart below (SOURCE). So, watching them shoot up a school wasn't as cringe-y as it is now. Now, it's super cringe-y!!

School Shooters by year from 1970 to 2022


At the point where The Predator grabs Nettles, you begin to wonder if this is going to be a who-dies-next movie, and if Group Two is going to make it out alive. Then you realize that you've become kinda attached to them all.


This movie kicked it up a notch with an 11-foot Predator. Here's the Fugitive Predator hoisting 6 ft. 2 in. Quinn.

The Predator showing Boyd hoisted by the fugitive Predator in the high school

And here's the Mega Predator hoisting the Fugitive Predator for scale:

The Mega Predator holds up the Fugitive Predator



You have to wait until around 1 hr 20 min for the real jungle shit, but they're outmatched. At this point, it seems SUPER STUPID that Nebraska is smoking. It was stupid from the get go, but NOW? Now it's the real do or die, or do and die. Alien weaponry aside, this movie is PACKED full of an incredible array of guns. I can't do it justice here but head over to IMFDb (Internet Movie Firearms Database) if you want to see what's what. The only thing I could not find is what they all shoot at the 11-foot Predator that covers him in what seems like smoke and then sets him on fire. That's pretty wicked. Now it's a who-dies-next movie. Baxley and Coyle are a "couple" like Mac and Blain. You do and you don't expect them to go out the way they do. It makes you realize that this "Group Two" is not going to be in the next movie. That's sad. They were really entertaining.


And just when you thought the Gnarly Kills were over . . . The movie has a few more treats in store. Yes, Action Movie Freaks laugh at this gruesome shit. I guess in the same way horror fans do but it's somehow more satisfying in Action Movies.


They definitely left the story open for a sequel, and a really cool idea, but what are they still waiting for . . .? According to avp.fandom. com:

"During post-production, producer John Davis revealed that the movie 'will set up two sequels,' although director Black was keen to point out that while sequels were possible, his focus was on creating a self-contained picture. On November 20th 2020, it was announced that another installment development and to be directed by Dan Trachtenberg with a script from Patrick Aison. The Walt Disney Company will produce the project through their 20th Century Studios banner."

The Assassin Predator was there to assassinate the Fugitive Predator in order to prevent him from delivering the "Predator Killer" pod to humanity, so that humans could fight back against a Predator invasion. I would still like to see that. The final scene makes me wonder if this is where they got the idea to "cook up" the bigger, better, Captain America in a pod.

Another thing that was cooked up was an alternate ending with "Newt" from Aliens coming out of the pod. They even shot it. That would have been interesting as a cliff hanger. Ripley was also supposed to be a possibility but that would have come off as cheesy to me. Read all about it (with lots of photos) at


"Two unused endings for the film would have involved either Ellen Ripley or Newt being found within the pod that is the subject of interest for the last part of the film. Both women would have been wearing a breather helmet marked with the logo of the Weyland-Yutani Corporation. These endings were filmed with Breanna Watkins portraying both Ripley and Newt, although neither was ultimately used."

The movie effects were a total upgrade to be sure. The 11-foot "Upgrade Predator" is a "purely CGI creation" according to  The Fugitive or Rogue Predator was 7' 5" and played by 6' 9.5" actor Brian A. Prince. Talk about a physical role. At the very end, all I could think was how cool this human/alien, pod-created, version of a kicked-up Super Soldier would be, and how would a whole squad of them fare . . .


Here's the trailer: