Tag Archives: predator

Spare 11 minutes of your life to watch Sealab

I am too tired to write anything of vague interest now, and am going to go to bed while it’s still light outside. As a result, this blog will require you to use your eyes to watch rather than read.

This is Sealab 2021, and I honestly believe if I was ever allowed to make a TV show it would be pretty much exactly the same as this. Watch it and love it. And if you don’t love it, we’re going to have to break up. Either that or you’re just an idiot, in which case we don’t have to break up – you just have to shut up. Forever:

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To Kill A Predator

I watched Predator yesterday. I watched Predator 2 today. Tomorrow I’ll probably watch Predators (unless I watch it this evening). As such I am currently the most experty expert on the topic of the alien hunting machine known as the Predator, and as such I am going to list some ways in which I would not only survive an encounter with one of the big, dreadlocked bastards, but how I would make it bleed.

Because, you know, if it bleeds we can kill it.

Drop my gun, put my hands up, start crying, wet myself
Then, when the bastard thinks I’m poor sport I’d totally kill the shit out of him with the secret gun I forgot to mention I had. HaHA!

Cover myself in mud, wear a heat-proof space suit thing, not carry any weapons and don’t be Gary Busey
That way I’m guaranteed to survive any encounter. Admittedly I wouldn’t be able to kill it like I promised, but fuck you. I’m scared and I want it to go away, so I’m very much surviving like the fittest in this situation.

Make sure it’s one of Paul WS Anderson’s Predators
While the original beasts are nimble yet ferocious beasts, imposing in size and dominant in battle, the Predators created by Paul WS Anderson for his abortion of a film Aliens vs Predator were not quite up to that level. Basically they were fat and died easily. If I was to fight one of Paul’s Predators, I’d probably be able to win. Genuinely. Armed with little more than a wooden spoon.

Throw Paul WS Anderson at it
Then, naturally, stay to watch it tear his spinal column out. It’s like porn, in a way. I reckon it would then blow itself up, as its work on earth would clearly be done with.

Hammers
Lots of hammers.

Hire Sean Bean
I don’t know why, I just get the feeling Seen Been would either be able to distract the Predator by talking in a thick Yorkshire accent, or he’d be able to kill it. With swords, most likely.

Definite vein of logic running through this whole entry, yes indeedy.

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Arnold Schwarzenegreview #1 – Predator

*This would have been a lot deeper and longer (yes, even longer than it already is), but fuck off. It’s nearly 11pm and I have too much sleeping to get done. I also haven’t bothered proofing it, which must give you a clue as to how tired I am.*

Predator is a film that has been degraded. It is quoted ad nauseam and reduced down to its base elements, with its meaning forever lost and true value to society boiled away until just a few lines and off the cuff remarks remain. It’s desiccated. An empty shell. Rendered obsolete. But I’m here to stop that from being so – to set the record straight and to show you all the true meaning of Predator. To analyse the depth and deconstruct the social impact this masterpiece of cinematography has had on life as we know it.

Arnold Schwarzenegger plays a man named ‘Dutch’: boss-man of an elite rescue squad and smoker of fine cigars. He and his squad are asked to go into the South American jungle to rescue some kidnapped diplomats, alongside his old friend and current pencil-pusher ‘Dillon’. Aside from anything else, this opening shows us two things: one, that Dutch is not a racist as he has whites, blacks and native Americans in his squad, and two, the he’s well good at mid-air arm wrestles. It’s a metaphor for the struggle we all have to take on in life, and it’s one that Dutch gives us confidence to overcome.

The lesson we learn almost immediately after arriving in South America, though, is to never trust CIA operatives who used to be your friends and now are pencil pushers. This may not apply to you all, but it can certainly be taken to mean “the man”. Don’t trust him. He will set you up and use you as an unwitting participant in the systematic elimination of a dissident group based in the middle of a thick jungle setting, which will in turn attract the attention of an intergalactic killing machine hell-bent on hunting the fuck out of the best prey he has ever laid his weird alien eyes on. Don’t trust the man.

Blain’s death is the first to really have an effect on the human side of things, and shows us how we should all try and handle our grief: eliminating shrubbery. Different people of different nations and faiths deal with the deaths of friends and loved ones is myriad different ways, but it is Mac (and latterly his squad of pals) who shows us how we should deal with this bereavement. A minigun and a forest: it’s all you need to let out a lifetime of mourning in about a minute. These are the kind of things we can only learn through the magic of Hollywood – through the magic of cinema.

As the squad become aware of the perils facing them – Blain’s earlier quip of “you lose it here, you’re in a world of hurt” offering particular resonance considering the situation – it is Dutch who keeps everyone together. Organising a group tree-pulling exercise (disguised as a ‘trap-setting exercise, just to keep the chaps thinking they’re doing something worthwhile) is just one way in which morale is kept high, and a deleted scene alludes to a hearty rendition of Kumbayah around the campfire. Once again though, the dignity of the human spirit is challenged by the foreign invader who runs in and wrecks up all of their carefully laid netting. Once again the Predator shows us that the human struggle is never over – that we must always be vigilant in case the “netting” of our “soul” becomes “frazzled by a plasmacaster”. We can all learn from this.

It goes without saying that more of the squad die, and there are more lessons to be learned here. If you are a psychopathic-looking Native American chap, you should probably strip half-naked, mutilate your chest with an obscenely large combat knife and then scream when your friends are out of sight. We should all remember that one, not just our Indian friends. Poncho’s death reminds us of how unfair life can be, and how much it insists on shitting on you until you are killed by a laser blast to the head. This section was difficult for me to watch, as many friends and family have actually died in this exact fashion. Still, it’s the films that ask the most of their audience that really are the classics.

As the final battle looms we have time to reflect: are we, as a species, any different to this being of another world? We are ostensibly hunters – predators, if you will – so maybe we aren’t all that different to this seven-foot two-inch beast with protruding mandibles and the ability to see our heat signatures. Alas, it is not Dutch’s job to consider this – it is his job to eliminate this threat from the world.

You wouldn’t think it from the incredible display through the majority of the film, but Dutch is more than capable of showing a side of humanity we can all relate to. He offers the Predator a helping hand; a shove in the right direction, commanding the beast to: “DO IT! I’M RIGHT HERE! KILL ME!” It shows that not only is he a selfless human being, but that he has a deep sympathy and understanding for the Predator’s mission – to kill him.

Obviously Dutch is deeply disappointed – if not outright upset – when he mistakenly dislodges a log trap, dropping a hefty chunk of wood straight on top of the extra-terrestrial. Fortunately though the big guy survives the ‘logging’ incident and offers Dutch one more chance to entertain him: “run faster than a nuclear explosion, and I will die happy.”

Dutch obliges. He leaves on his helichopper with Maria and goes on to star in some other fantastic films. Fade to credits.

Every day is a school day: the first names of Dutch and Dillon are Alan and George, respectively (this is absolutely not a joke).

I aim to make this another series of posts, all analysing the sheer impact the films of Arnold Schwarzenegger have had on the world as a whole. To try and put into words how Terminator 2: Judgement Day raised humanity to another plateau of existence will be hard, but it’s a challenge I simply have to tackle.

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One previous owner

Having picked up Terminator 2 (Skynet Edition) on Blu-ray recently, I am now the proud owner of the Greatest Film Ever Made in no less than five different forms: pirated VHS, purchased VHS, director’s cut recorded from TV on VHS, Ultimate Edition DVD and finally this latest addition. I know you’re impressed. I am. After all, who wouldn’t want to have lots of different versions of what is essentially the same film, just with added bits here and there and different audio tracks or varying visual fidelity? Only a fool, quite clearly. Though I’m obviously not totally committed as I’ve missed out on a couple of other releases. I’ll blame a hangover, or something.

This made me think of all the times I’ve ‘traded up’ on something that really didn’t need to be changed or improved upon at all. One of the best examples was buying series one to four of South Park on their original UK releases, only to dump them when the American releases came about years later. Why? Umm… five minute commentaries on episodes? Yes, that’ll do as a reason, I’m sure. Granted, the UK versions were essentially retired at series four, but I’m sure even if I’d owned more of them I’d have been more than happy to trade up.

But why? What’s the point? Some barely-recognisable benefit over the original? Terminator 2 is the best example of this, with the Blu-ray release offering nothing over the mega-super-ultra DVD which was re-released about fifteen different times, beyond an increased visual quality that’s not that much of an increase over the upscaled DVD on my not-that-great TV.

And you know what? I couldn’t give two sods about it. I’m going to keep on buying these incremental updates to the movies I love. I would make that into a magical List of Three, with something like ‘movies I love, games I play and albums I listen to’ but, well – that would be a lie. It’s only movies that really get away with this behaviour. I’m still waiting on the Aliens series to be released on Blu-ray so I can upgrade my already upgraded-once-from-VHS-twice-from-DVD series, and as for Star Wars? Well that’s pushing into T2 territory for Most Updated award.

It could be argued that games fall into this trap, mind you, with the incremental yearly updates of sports games (and lately things like Call of Duty). I do tend to upgrade once a year, on the dot when something with next year in its title comes along. See: FIFA, Football Manager, Smackdown vs Raw etc. This, of course, ignores the likes of Resident Evil which – while it has been re-released countless times – hasn’t seen much in the way of incremental updates. More: no updates at all. I still haven’t let them off for the Gamecube versions of Resi 2 and 3.

It’s interesting, but I can’t be bothered analysing the behaviour or why I do it. Nor am I going to bother trying to correct it or limit it in any way. After all, they might release another version of Predator soon, and that’s something the whole world needs.

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