Eye For Film >> Movies >> Aliens Vs Predator - Requiem (2007) Film Review
Aliens Vs Predator - Requiem
Reviewed by: Jennie Kermode
This is, without a doubt, one of the most badly made big-budget films I have ever seen. It's difficult to imagine how one could take two concepts as well developed as Aliens and Predators and come up with something this weak. But that said, it's still highly entertaining, and, though I wouldn't go out of my way to do so, I'd quite happily watch it again.
The story picks up where AVP left off, with a chestburster emerging from a Predator corpse. Within minutes, this creature is fully grown (if you thought the life cycle in AVP was stupidly speeded up, you ain't seen nothin' yet - any sufficiently advanced idiocy is indistinguishable from magic) and is ravaging the Predator spaceship. This is easier because the huge vessel we saw in the last film has now been inexplicably compressed into a gadget-packed broom cupboard. Nevertheless, one brave dying Predator manages to send out a distress signal before the ship crash-lands on Earth. The laws of physics are away on their tea break during its descent so it doesn't create a massive crater and a few centuries of darkness, but it does rather startle a father and son who are out on a hunting trip. Then the alien embryos escape from the wreckage, with predictable consequences.
We are introduced to the inhabitants of the nearby small town as if this were a disaster movie, which essentially is is, just with monsters instead of a half-hearted earthquake or volcano. A bullied teenager swoons over a dim girl who takes her clothes off at any opportunity. His reformed criminal brother banters with the useless sheriff, the two of them producing stand out bad performances which are delightful to watch. There's a soldier just back from the war to tell her husband and small daughter how much she loves them. A waitress worries about her policeman partner and two dope-smoking gun store owners provide apparently intentional, garishly inappropriate comic relief.
There should be no relief of any kind in an Alien or Predator film. The relentlessness of the monsters is part of what makes them work. The Aliens should also be creepy, of course, which is completely lost here, as we see very little of them doing their own thing and the kills they make are far too clean. An interesting opportunity to play psychological games with a maternity hospital scene is completely squandered and instead we get a close-up of the nasty Alien followed by a shot of some poor imperiled babies, then cut to another scene. What next? Is the Alien going to trample on some flowers? Is it going to espouse some unsavoury political opinions? Fortunately the Predators come off better. Answering the distress signal comes a solitary CSI-type Predator on a mission to cover up the evidence and kill everything with too many mouths. Instead of the ritual weapons from AVP he's carrying all the latest tech, and some of this is genuinely cool. He fights intelligently and the few bits of monster on monster action we get are lots of fun, even if they do suffer from woefully inadequate cinematography.
If you're looking for violence, running around, shouting, cheesy quotations and shiny-looking monsters, this film delivers. Ultimately, though, the biggest shock is that the directors put their names in the credits.Reviewed on: 16 Jan 2008