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Movie Review: Aliens vs. Predator – Requiem

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Aliens vs. Predator – Requiem delivers exactly what is advertised, no more, no less. While the title characters duke it out in a small town in America, plenty of humans – often entirely defenseless – get caught in the fray and are duly slaughtered in a variety of nasty ways, be it by skinning, beheading by jaws, impregnation, or acid spray.

And during its relatively short run time, there is indeed plenty of running to avoid all these nasty possible endings. The cast consists entirely of relatively unknown actors, which is more fun in the beginning as you can't guess by star status who will survive and the order in which the victims will perish. As the focus is split over multiple characters, it is also not clear for a while who will be the Sigourney Weaver in this chapter — the smart and tough lady who will end up kicking some butt. Though to be honest, this movie's Sigourney never reaches her full potential and lets a man fill in for her.

There are quite a few narrative dead ends in the story, mostly ended by death. The movie is brutal in killing off innocent people, women and children not exempted. Thankfully we are not all that invested in any of them, as not much time is given to make them more than a basic character outline. The dialogue is flat and thankfully sparse and the way the plot flows serves its purpose in keeping the action going continuously and keeping you curious about the next bit of bloodshed.

I am not spoiling anything in saying that an Alien-Predator hybrid appears in this movie, which follows off directly from the end of the previous flick in the series. I guess one would call him an Alienator? Apart from looking unique, I am not clear on the ramifications of this crossbreeding, as the movie doesn't show the difference that much, though it does give the Alienator a neat and disgusting new way to make babies. Much of the inter-species fighting is done in semi-darkness, which is atmospheric as hell, but makes it hard to see what is going on at points.

I will refrain from poking at too many of the holes in the plot, but a couple won't hurt. Why is an empty helicopter left behind conveniently on the roof of an evacuated hospital? How do the Aliens build large parts of a hive in what couldn't have been more than an hour or two? And what is up with the variable gestation time of the Alien embryos? Why does it take so long for those helicopters to arrive later in the movie? Feel free to discuss amongst yourselves. In short: an efficient and brainless sci-fi horror movie that has a sequel shamelessly built into the last scene.

Aliens vs. Predator – Requiem, 2007, 86 min. USA. Directors: Colin & Greg Strause Starring: Steven Pasquale, Reiko Aylesworth, John Ortiz.

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