Liz Tells Frank What Happened In “Predator”

Dear Frank,

So, okay, you say that you’ve watched Predator, but I’m here to question whether you’ve truly seen it. For one thing, you never talk about it, and having just seen it for the first time a few days ago, I can tell you that I CAN’t stop talking about it. Maybe it’s been a while for you? Or maybe you’ve forgotten how incredible this movie is.

Also, I just checked with your girlfriend and she says you don’t have two penises. Given that this movie’s hypermasculinity caused me to GROW a penis while watching it (it is kind of weird having a penis, for the record!), and it seems unlikely that you were born without one, I can only assume that you have not truly let Predator into your heart.

So lemme tell you what happens in Predator so you truly understand. Some bad-ass Alan Silvestri music takes us into the jungles of… I dunno. Probably South America somewhere. It was the 80s, after all. And you know it’s the 80s, because here’s Ahnuld, ripped and youthful, accompanying his team of commandos off a helicopter and into a base.

Here, he meets Carl Weathers! And let me just get this out of my system now:

Before you ask, Carl Weathers does not at any point in this movie get his stew on. The movie suffers for it.

Carl and Ahnuld are old buddies from military-whatever, and greet each other fondly. While watching the film, I paused during this scene and found myself presented with the most incredible screenshot of all time; I took a picture, so that you might enjoy it as well.

This was what made my penis start growing, just for the record.

Carl wants Ahnuld and his team to go out into the jungle and take down some dictator guy and his secret jungle camp. Why should this be done? What are the political ramifications? What will happen if Ahnuld fails? C’mon, Frank, this is an 80s movie made by John McTiernan. Don’t ask questions. There are brown people in the jungle — bad luck for them if they get in Ahnuld’s way.

So Ahnuld and the guys do what Carl says and they go into the jungle. This is where we get hints of the various characters’ personalities: there’s the guy with glasses — played by future Iron Man 3 director Shane Black! — who tells classy jokes about giant vaginas (which confuse me a little, especially now that I have a penis of my own). Then there’s the guy who’s an awesome hunter tracker type. And Governor Ventura, and Governor Ventura’s best buddy The Guy Who Carries Around a Flask. And maybe another guy? I forget exactly. Everyone wears different hats, which makes it easier to keep track of the differences.

The boyz stalk around the jungle in search of this secret guerrilla camp, but along the way they find three dudes who have been totally skinned! It’s pretty gross. I might have freaked out and been all girly about it, if my penis weren’t already half-grown.

Glasses finds the skinned guys’s dog tags — they’re dudes Ahnuld knows, so he confronts Carl over the fact that they’re not the first team Carl has sent after this duder. Carl won’t say anything, though, because he’s a total bureaucratic monkey or something now. I dunno. Honestly, this is a lotta talk and not a lot of blowing shit up–

AHHHHHHHHH. There we go. Ahnuld and the gang find the camp, and destroy it at an almost leisurely pace. Ahnuld has a particularly ingenious moment involving a truck-powered generator. BOOM BOOM BOOM BOOM! Not only did my penis reach its full growth at this moment, but it might have become the slightest bit erect.

The only complication in this escapade is that in the chaos, a guerrilla almost manages to get the jump on Ahnuld. By which I mean the commando gets close enough for Ahnuld to cold-cock him with his rifle. Wait, did I say he? NOPE! That hat comes off and it turns out the guerrilla is a lady! SURPRISE!

Having achieved their primary goal, Ahnuld and the guys are ready to head to the rendezvous point with their new ladyfriend, as more guerrillas are swarming. But in the aftermath of the battle, we’re totally in heat vision cam, and there are clicking noises, and UH OH SOMEBODY’S GETTING HUNTED.

A whole bunch of somebodys are getting hunted, actually — something invisible is in the trees, hopping around like a hopping thing. Could it be the PREDATOR?

It is totally the Predator. Hooray! We’re like halfway through this movie, by the way.

But man, they make us wait but then they fucking deliver. As good as Ahnuld and his team are, planting traps to lure Predator into the open, but holy shit they got nothing on laser cannons and giant Predator sword claws. Here, let me explain this with viral video:

Predator don’t give a shit. It takes what it wants! That includes the spinal columns of its victims!

Quickly Ahnuld and the gang gets narrowed down to Ahnuld, Black Guy With the Flask and Commando Lady. Notable kill include Jesse Ventura and Carl Weathers, who each die bloody mutilated deaths thanks to Predator’s laser cannon. Carl Weathers’s arm gets blown off! But he keeps firing his machine gun! It is AWESOME.

Ahnuld, having lost everyone useful on his team, screams at Guerrilla Girl to get to the chopper that’s supposed to pick them up (oh, yeah, Guerrilla Girl and he have bonded to some extent, at least to the point where he trusts her with a gun against an invisible enemy), and gets chased by Predator into a 100 foot freefall. Whoops!

Watching Ahnuld run makes me realize that there are a lot of things I need to know about having a penis. Like, is there an issue with bounce? Is that why jock straps exist? I have so much to learn!

Anyways, the next half hour? All Ahnuld vs. Predator, with Ahnuld reverting to pure animal instinct and a handmade bow and arrow in order to take on a superior fighter with one key weakness — specifically, the heat vision thing, which Ahnuld figures out how to trick, thus making them BOTH invisible! Go Ahnuld go. Ahnuld is hanging out underneath logs and shit to take Predator down; there’s more than a little honey badger in him too.

Ahnuld and Predator finally have their big showdown, which involves Predator taking off his mask so that he and Ahnuld going mano-a-alieno until Ahnuld’s like “kill me! fucking kill me!” and Predator is like, okay, and then Ahnuld crushes him with a log he’d booby-trapped! Nice work, Ahnuld! But oh no! Predator’s set off a nuke? And laughs as Ahnuld runs to escape the blast? Predator knows how to laugh? I guess from observing humans, he knows that. Still, it’s fucking weird.


Ahnuld cannot be killed by nuke alone though (oh, my penis is totally loving this shit) — he walks out of the mist, and gets his ass picked up by the chopper carrying Guerrilla Girl and Flask Guy. The end! That is Predator! A movie whose most quotable lines — “I ain’t got time to bleed” and “If it bleeds, we can kill it” — have all the subtlety we’ve come to expect from classic cinema of this genre.

Great fuckin’ movie, Frank. Just great. Oh, and don’t worry about the effect my new penis will have on my life, at least when it comes to my relationship. My boyfriend watched Predator with me, you see, and he grew an extra penis as well. As long as he has one more penis than I do, we’ll be just fine.


About Liz Shannon Miller

Liz Shannon Miller is a Los Angeles-based writer and editor, and has been talking about television on the Internet since the very beginnings of the Internet. She is currently Senior TV Editor at Collider, and her work has also been published by the New York Times, Vulture, Variety, the AV Club, the Hollywood Reporter, IGN, The Verge, and Thought Catalog. She is also a produced playwright, a host of podcasts, and a repository of "X-Files" trivia.

Posted on February 28, 2011, in All the Spoilers, Movies and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

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