The Predator series has always been willing to play with its formula, tweaking its setup with each new installment to varying degrees of success. The gimmick this time around is setting the movie in 1719, depicting the alien’s “first hunt on Earth” – this tidbit comes from the trailer, and feels somewhat lazy since it’s never mentioned in the movie.
Nope isn’t a horror movie in the purest sense, but it contains one of the scariest sequences of the year so far – one that tops anything from Get Out in sheer nerve-fraying tension. The scene is unnecessary and borderline irrelevant to the plot, but it’s such a creepy, compelling horror short unto itself that the movie is better for its inclusion. There’s something about it that’s symbolic of Nope as a whole: sometimes confused, but gripping in the moment.
Despite its name, Sputnik is not a space-set horror movie. Most of it takes place on Earth, within the confines of a claustrophobic military laboratory. We open aboard a Russian satellite, with two Soviet cosmonauts preparing for their descent back to Earth. After technical trouble and a run-in with an unseen creature, the spacecraft crash lands on Earth, with Konstantin (Pyotr Fyodorov) the sole survivor. Continue reading →
Unlike its counterpart and occasional crossover property the Alien series, each of the Predator movies has been essentially standalone, their only common thread the titular extraterrestrial. While the Alien series’ best entries undoubtedly surpass those of the Predator franchise, it’s also stagnated thanks to uninspired diminishing returns after Aliens. Meanwhile, Predator’s sequels have proven to be a more eclectic and interesting bunch, never content to self-plagiarize their celebrated predecessor. After the jungle-bound antics of the first movie, Predator 2 moved the action to the city and expounded on the aliens’ lore, while Predators had a similar structure to the first film but flipped the script by dropping its band of warriors on predator turf. Continue reading →
As I said in my Best of 2017, the ratio of good-to-bad movies was pretty decent this year, but the 2017 had its share of stinkers as well. Two quick notes: I (obviously) couldn’t include any movies I didn’t see (so you’re off the hook, The Emoji Movie); and as always, the presence of a movie on this list doesn’t inherently mean I disliked it. Enjoy! Continue reading →
Four our third episode, Vil and I tackle the 1982 Steven Spielberg classic E.T. We’ll discuss how the movie differs when viewing it as an adult, the political implications, and more. As always, spoilers ahead!
Alien lays egg, egg hatches facehugger, facehugger hugs face, chestburster bursts chest. The Xenomorph lifecycle used to be so simple, yet with Ridley Scott’s latest two movies it’s becoming needlessly complicated, not to mention self-contradicting. The same could be said of Alien: Covenant’s plot anytime it attempts to expand the franchise’s lore – the same misguided choice that ended up sinking Prometheus. Thankfully it never hits the lows of that mess, but at times it comes dangerously close. Continue reading →