Prey (2022) is the fifth installment the Predator franchise and is a prequel to the first four films. It is set in the Northern Great Plains in North America in 1719. It is directed by Dan Trachtenberg, written by Patrick Aison and stars Amber Midthunder, Dakota Beavers, Dane DiLiegro, Michelle Thrush, Stormee Kipp, Julian Black Antelope and Bennett Taylor.
I’ve never reviewed a flick from the Predator franchise here on the site but with this review I’m setting out to rectify that situation. Prey premiered at the San Diego Comic-Con on July 21, 2022, and was released by 20th Century Studios as a Hulu original film in the United States. ScareTissue co-founder Pip was in town a few weeks back and we took the opportunity to watch this flick together.
SPOILER ALERT: Even though I won’t be doing a plot review, this review will talk openly about the plot of the film. If you haven’t seen it and you want to be spoiler free go check it out and come on back afterword.
Prey (2022) – Thoughts and Recommendation
I’m not going to bother with a recap. I tried and have deleted it several times at this point. It’s not that it’s a bad or boring plot necessarily… It’s just that if you’ve seen any Predator films you pretty much know what you’re getting. We’ve got good guys who are hunted by the Predator. Sometimes we throw in bad guys too, but the general idea is who can survive long enough to kill the Predator after a final fight.
The difference here is this one really is a prequel to anything we’ve seen before in the franchise (with the exception of some flashback scenes in Alien vs. Predator). Here we’re in the 1700’s in the Great Planes and we’re dealing with a group of Comanche protagonists which is a nice twist.
As I was watching this I wasn’t sure if it was sort of a soft reboot to the franchise or if it was truly a prequel to the OG. There’s something specific later in the film that tells me it’s smack dab in the middle of the Predator universe that we know and love. I will point out a few differences in this entry into the franchise:
- The score is missing. No, I’m not saying this is a movie without a score… but it doesn’t have that iconic Predator score from the original film. That was a big miss in my mind.
- It’s SO LIGHT OUTSIDE. I mentioned this to Pip while we were watching it. There’s just so many scenes where it’s light outside. Even in the OG film when it was daytime we were in a dense forest so the scenes were much darker. This may be a nitpick but it’s something I picked out.
- I’ve seen a couple of reviews that are bitching cause this is a ‘girl power’ flick cause it had a female lead. I can honestly say I didn’t really pick up on that while I was watching the film. Sure, we’ve got a female protagonist but I didn’t feel like it was being shoved down our throats.
So the question becomes, is Prey a recommendable film in the Predator franchise. I can tell you this… it’s not even close to my least favorite films in the franchise. There are FAR worse entries out there. It’s no where near the original and I’d put Predator 2, Alien vs. Predator and probably Predators above it as well. That said, this is a pretty solid entry especially when you factor in that you won’t have to go to the theater to see it. The lead Amber Midthunder is above average and the design for the Predator itself is unique enough to be different but similar enough so we know what we’re dealing with. I’d say this is a mild recommend if you’re a fan of the franchise. If you’re not familiar with the Predator franchise you can still start here and enjoy this film but I’d point you to the classic OG first… and then come back to the prequel Prey.
Have you seen Prey (2022)? Tell us what you think in the comments below!