This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.
Brian’s review published on Letterboxd:
This review may contain spoilers.
Predator has always been a favorite. I first saw it in late 1987 when it hit VHS. My older brother bought it and some of his friends and I watched it that very night. I was only 6, but I remember enjoying it even at that young age.
It still holds up as one the best action films nearly 30 years later. But is it really an action film, or is it horror? I've kind of gone back and forth on that over the years. It has plenty of action, but the camera work and the point-of-view technique gives it sort of a horror movie feel. Not to mention how the characters are picked off one by one.
The gore is awesome, the action is pretty solid, and it might be the most manly movie ever made. The effects were good for it's time, and they still hold up ok. The film otherwise has a very gritty and grainy look to it. It looked that way on VHS, DVD and now Blu Ray. The 2008 BR is very grainy, but even McTiernan has said that this was never intended to be a beautiful and slick movie.
Years after the 2008 BR, 20th Century Fox released the Ultimate Hunter Edition in which most of the grain was removed from the film. The only problem is that removing natural grain often causes detail to be removed from the picture. Which goes against the point of getting the blu ray in the first place. So, I would rate the 2008 blu ray is the best. However, I do own the Triple Feature edition of Predator because the UH edition does have special features and I wanted all three films.
The biggest weakness of the film is that the point of the team heading to the jungle is sort of forgotten about and it feels meaningless. Still, Predator is one of the best action/horror films of the 80's.