Reviewed by Nathan Johnston
Rating: 3 Beans
have no really harsh complaints here for some totally unknown reason. In fact I am still in a small case of shock as to my reaction to seeing this movie once again. I swear that my memory must be leaving me, because as I was looking back on my previous viewings of this movie (both of them), I thought that when I rented this I was on a bad movie winner. It is now that I say with almost a pang of regret and astonishment, that this movie is not as bad as I thought that it once was.
When I first saw this movie many a year ago at the cinema, my initial reaction was "Feh... whatever" with a big shrug of the shoulders included. During the following years as I matured(?), I looked back upon this movie with increasing disdain. It rised to such a point to where the blow torch was frequently applied to it as one of the more stupid attempts at a movie that I had seen in recent years. At present my movie watching existence has been thrown into upheaval by my current reversal of opinion.
Moving right along... my only complaint about this movie was the acting... more specifically Bill Paxton (yep, the same one from Titanic). Old Billy is one of my more favorite actors to ridicule. In fact I was mortified by the first movie that I saw him in in which he didn't die (Trespass). Upon seeing that, I lept to my feet and hurled abuse at the TV for a solid half hour or so. Not only was I angry, but hurt, mystified and stupified. Anyway, I've been side-tracked...
Billy-boy has got his acting down to a science, he can play three types of roles:
1) a coward (True Lies)
2) a smart-ass (Predator 2) or
3) a smart-assed coward (Aliens)
Either way, his the range of performances in any of these roles is relatively the same: ridiculous at best (Aliens) to painful to watch (True Lies). But Bill is at his best here as one of LAPD's finest Jerry Lambert, delivering all his lines with all the finesse and style of a used car salesman (hey he's even played a used car salesman once... jackpot!!!). Overall, Billy-boy is somewhat amusing, but it is generally painful to watch the ridiculous way that he delivers his lines as they come across as incredibly moronic. Other than Bill's performance and Maria Conchita Alonso's (The Running Man) incomprehensible babble - I could hardly understand a word that she said - the acting is pretty good, despite a few lapses from Danny Glover in parts. Another shock is that Gary Busey is also decent in this.
This all makes for a moderately enjoyable flick. You should know the drill, take the Predator, move it to LA in the middle of a drug war so it can kill the baddies and then some cops. After that throw in a tough rogue cop and his squad plus a few side attractions (the shady government agency of course) and you have the movie. It actually doesn't set too bad a showdown. Added to that, the effects are very good, escpecially for their time. Also the action sequences are quite good, in particular reference to the subway scene and the finale isn't too bad either. In fact its a lot better than I remember it.
If you can edit out dear old Bill's voice along with Maria Conchita Alonso's throughout along the way, you've got a pretty decent movie.
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