DrFortyseven’s review published on Letterboxd:
For some reason, in my mind, the trailer for this film made it look cheap.
Vaguely interesting, perhaps, but cheap.
The title was an interesting (if surprisingly late to the party) twist on the Predator motif. I actually hadn't seen a full Predator sequel since Glover's Predator 2. None of them looked worth bothering with, and the reviews seemed to validate that feeling.
Then I saw it was being released direct-to-streaming, and alarm bells began to ring. Direct to HULU no less? Nah, I'll pass.
But then I started to hear the hype, from voices I trust. There seemed to be a lot of shocked folks who were loving it.
The trailer for Prey may have looked cheap, to my eye, but at least I recognized there was an attempt being made. But it didn't look strong enough to possibly be... good. Right?
I was skeptical for a bit. But finally, I caved to pressure, if only to be able to hold my own in discussions.
Well, much like the Predator warrior who, too, also makes the same mistake: I severely underestimated this film... and it slayed me.
I *really* loved this flick. Maybe not an "I'll rewatch it every year" kind of love, but I will heartily recommend it.
This feels like it doesn't belong with the AAA film crowd. Like, this should just be shown in a handful of exclusive theaters around the world or something.
Okay, I'm overselling it. But I'm impressed with this film because of the writing, I think. It doesn't overdo the "but you're a girl, you cannot fight" angle, but it also weaves into the story in a genius kind of way.
That's about as much as I'll say, because I won't spoil anything, but the film is just so TIGHT! All the information we need about this story is there on the screen, and in a way that feels organic, and none of it feels like a waste of time. There is zero fat on these bones.
It almost seems silly to match up any of these humans against a Predator. A five second fight. How interesting can the film be? But the flick does a great job of making it's case for the plausibility of the events to come.
And that's what I mean about the film: it FEELS right. The victories and loses are well-earned. We don't have to rationalize it with "she's surviving because she's an indestructible Arnold".
So yeah. Great stuff, depending on your tastes.
🎉 BONUS FUN:
Via a... technical anomaly... I accidentally watched the 100% Comanche-dubbed version of the film. Not the English version. And I'm not pissed at all.
In fact, I would even encourage new viewers to purposely consider it: I found it helped immerse me in the story. Additionally, it helped me gloss over the occasional modernism in the dialogue that I might have otherwise noticed. Now I just assume her brother saying "this is some crazy shit" is really whatever the Comanche-equivalent of that is. 😉