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They hunt to live. It lives to hunt.Aug. 05, 2022United States
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In 1719, young Naru ( Amber Midthunder ), a member of the Comanche tribe, dreams of becoming a hunter, like her brother Tanabe ( Dakota Beavers ). She should also soon get the opportunity to prove her skills. Finally, a mountain lion is up to mischief and has attacked one of its own. However, the hunt does not go according to plan, as it is not she who gets the credit for her deed, but her brother. So, determined to prove herself to the rest of the tribe, she sets out again, this time to take down a dangerous grizzly. She has no idea that there is another creature out there that is much more dangerous than any animal and that hunts people for its part…

There are film series where you no longer expect anything good to come out of them. This certainly includes Predator. While the first part from 1987 still enjoys cult status, of which Arnold Schwarzenegger is not entirely innocent, the various successors are rather controversial – not to mention the crossovers Alien vs. Predator. The attempt to revive the franchise in 2018 with Predator – Upgrade also didn’t quite work out. In this respect, the expectations of Prey, the fifth “real” part, weren’t particularly high anyway. All the more so since it didn’t even make it into the cinemas, but only over hereDisney+ can be seen. And anyway, how good can a film be that doesn’t even admit in the title that it’s part of a series?

The answer: surprisingly well. The scenario sounded like a bad joke. The previous films have shown that even trained warriors and soldiers with the most modern weapons can hardly compete against the extraterrestrial hunter. A young woman who, three centuries ago, held her own with bow and arrow against the fighting creatures from space, no, that doesn’t sound too convincing. Or exciting. The indigenous tribes of America did not even manage to hold their own against the contemporary invaders. On the other hand, the series has always thrived on the tension of having to face off against and survive against an overpowered creature. With Prey, that’s just one step up.

It has its charm as the attempt is made here to eliminate a highly technological attacker with weapons that are archaic from today’s point of view. Another exciting factor is that it’s not just a human vs. Predator duel. Even everyday life was dangerous enough for the Comanches, with wild animals, other tribes, and human invaders. They may not be that well-equipped, but they do have fun with cruelty. However, this everyone-against-everyone principle is not consistently followed. The focus of Prey is Naru, who doesn’t want to be dictated to by anything or anyone. The other characters, even her brother Tanabe, don’t play a major role, some of which are eliminated quite quickly.

This will surely drive some fans crazy. A young woman, and one from the indigenous population at that? Negative reactions should not be long in coming. The rest, on the other hand, can be happy about how Amber Midthunder ( Only Mine, The Ice Road ) becomes a real action heroine here. If she shows it to everyone else, then that has a greater satisfaction factor. Anyone who fears that the film could become too harmless given the protagonist will also be taught a lesson: Prey gets down to business after a rather leisurely start. Overall, the optics are right, apart from a few weaker CGI moments, since nature also becomes an attractive contrast to the future threat.

Original title Prey

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