Director: Dan Trachtenberg
Writer: Patrick Aison
Starring: Amber Midthunder, Dakota Beavers, Stormee Kipp, Michelle Thrush, Julian black Antelope, and Dane DiLiegro
The fifth entry of the Predator series, Prey, has been released on Disney+/Hulu. This time around the story takes place in the past in 1719 taking the franchise into the past, with a story by Patrick Aison and Dan Trachtenberg. Aison wrote the full screenplay with Trachtenberg taking the director’s chair. It’s definitely a back-to-basics Predator film, with a focus on the hunting and survival.
Naru (Amber Midthunder) wants to be a great warrior like her brother, but the village want her to be a healer instead. While out training Naru witnesses the arrival of the Predator, without realising what’s actually happening. After one of the tribe is hurt, she joins the hunters in finding a lion, but believes there’s something a lot more vicious on the hunt.
The film is pretty light on plot, with everything beyond the opening basically being the hunt between Naru and the Predator with little moments that slow the pace down to ease up on the building tension. You get just enough backstory for Naru to see that’s she’s capable of being a hunter, but not as skilled in fighting as her brother. With the Predator he just arrives on Earth and starts killing everything it finds as a threat.
Prey is a pretty brutal film, especially with some of the animals being killed. The predator kills a wolf and a bear and it’s gruesome. There are also a lot of humans being sliced up and stabbed that’s full-on. It’s not the goriest of films, but there’s a fair amount of blood. The effects look a lot better than some horror films, and the actual predator looks awesome. For the most part you don’t see him, but when you get the full reveal, he’s completely menacing and intimidating.
There are two versions of Prey available to watch. One in English, which is completely fine until Naru meets some French voyageurs who speak in French and it becomes painfully obvious that the main characters aren’t actually speaking the Comanche language. Then there’s a version dubbed in Comanche, which is hidden in the ‘extras’ section on Disney Plus, but at least it’s an option. To be honest there isn’t that much dialogue in the film anyway, so it doesn’t matter, as most of it follows Naru hunting and tracking the Predator.
Prey is one of the better Predator films and shows that the series still can be really great. It may not add anything original to the franchise, or do anything that unexpected, but it’s so well made that it’s completely engaging the whole ninety minute (if you ignore the ten minutes of credits) runtime.
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