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Review: Prey (2022)

5 Star.png
5 Star.png

#Reviews #sciencefiction #horor #action #Predator

David North-Martino

Aug 8, 2022

Review: Prey (2022)

Review: Prey (2022)

Review by: David North-Martino

Prey (2022) is a science fiction horror action film directed by Dan Trachtenberg (10 Cloverfield Lane) and stars Amber Midthunder (Legion), Dakota Beavers, and Michelle Thrush (Blackstone).

Prey has opened to rave reviews from critics and audiences alike leaving me scratching my head wondering if we watched the same movie.

A prequel to Predator (1987) the movie follows Naru (Midthunder) a young Comanche woman who wishes to be taken seriously as a hunter by her family and tribe. Arriving on earth, a Predator sets its sights on hunting anything it deems a threat. Carnage ensues.

Prey is an interesting idea poorly executed. Pacing is slow, presumably to allow the characters and the setting time to breathe but nothing is done with that extra time. We know almost nothing about any of the characters and they are little more than cardboard cutouts. Any sense of fear, dread or suspense is lacking and the story plods to a predictable conclusion.

Midthunder does the best she can with the material given. Dialog is poor and too modern dispelling the illusion of the time period. Also, her character has an incomplete arc. She suddenly becomes a good fighter but we don’t get to see her improve her skills. However, she wields a cool, if improbable, improvised weapon that is a surprising highlight.

Beavers, who portrays Naru’s brother Taabe, is the standout here and portrays the most likable character. I wish they had fleshed him out a little more. As this is Beavers first acting role, I hope to see more from him in the future.

Cinematography is pedestrian and only serviceable. CGI comes across as cheap with the rendering of the Predator, blood spatter, and even some animals.

There’s a nice homage to Predator 2 (1990), although it only works if you don’t think about it too much, and a line from the first movie rings a little hollow here.

Hailed as one of the best Predator movies since the original, I’d say it can’t even hold a candle to Predator 2. Is it better than the sequels that came after? Maybe. But it’s not worse, even if it looks lower-budget. As it stands, watching the first two films in the franchise is a better use of your time.

Prey is streaming on Hulu.

Story Doctoring:

Thirty minutes should be removed from this film to improve the pacing. Like the original, they should forget about character development and get on with the hunt. The original provides a template to follow and could be utilized with a few changes. Sticking to the tried and true would make a more engaging movie. A montage where Naru improves her skills would have been welcome.

Rating: Two out of five stars.

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