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Published on May 13th, 2008 | by simeon

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Aliens Vs Predator Requiem

Two of the biggest creature franchises in cinematic history clash again this Christmas in the new film Aliens VS Predator: Requiem.

Picking up where the last film ended, “AVP-R” follows the surprise attack inside a predator ship and its subsequent crash in the woods near the small town of Gunnison Colorado. The crash does not go unnoticed, and sadly for a father and son on a hunting trip, investigating the crash site turns out to be a fatal mistake when they are infected by a pair of Alien Face-huggers from the crash site.

As if the Aliens were not bad enough, the locales also have to content with a Predator elite warrior who has been dispatched to stop the spread of the Aliens as well as cover up any evidence of the creatures and Predator technology from the crash.

In short order, an Alien infestation of Gunnison is underway and the local townspeople an unprepared to deal with the series of events that are underway and they find that even the local National Guard units are not prepared to face the ever expanding Alien legions.
In a race against time, a few survivors attempt to flee the carnage and our racing against time before even stronger containment methods are put into place.

The film is packed with action and there are enough solid visuals to keep fans entertained. However the films biggest failing, is a complete and utter lack of character development. While I do not usually expect much in this department from a film in this genre, “AVP-R” barely plays this lip service. We know that Dallas (Steven Pasquale) is an ex-con who is returned home to see his brother who in turn is drawing heat from his interest in girl who is dating the locale goon. We also know that Kelly (Reiko Aylesworth) is a soldier who has returned home to her daughter and husband and whose daughter resents her mom being away. Beyond those factors, there is precious else we are given about the characters which in turn makes it very hard to bond with them and care if they survive as they are little more than fodder for the interstellar killing machines.

The plot of the film is also very linear as the script from Shane Salerno does a nice job of setting up the events, but does not hold any real twists or turns and plays out in a very standard manner. While there is an attempt at the end to offer a little bonus for fans, it is not really enough to push the film over the top.

Directors Greg and Colin Strause have done a great job of capturing the look and feel of the franchise and have given fans what they have long asked for, a chance to see the Aliens loose in a modern setting on Earth. While the battle scenes shine and the duo keep the film moving along at a steady pace, they are hampered by the script and character issues I mentioned earlier.

Thankfully the series has returned to its R-Rated roots and the gore is back which is essential to show just how dangerous and destructive the two species are. The introduction of a new Alien/Predator hybrid is a nice touch, and does add a new albeit it controversial new chapter in Alien reproduction that is sure to get the fans talking.

In the end, fans are left with a mixed bag as the film is better than the previous film in the series but pales when compared with “Alien”, “Aliens”, and “Predator” where interesting characters combined with suspense and action to create true genre classics. As it stands,” AVP-R” is a worthy effort that comes up short of its aspirations.

3.5 stars out of 5
Gareth Von Kallenbach


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