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"It wants us to run. That's how it hunts. This is its jungle, its game, its rules."
Predators is an action film released in 2010. It was intended as the true spiritual successor to Predator, a task which in many ways it succeeds.
An American mercenary, Royce, wakes to find himself free falling toward a jungle below, with no clue why he's hurtling towards the ground at an alarming rate, or why there's a parachute on him that deploys automatically. Soon after landing, he encounters others who have arrived the exact same way. All they have in common is that each is a deadly killer and they band together for strength in numbers. Soon they realize that not only are they not in Kansas anymore, they're on a gigantic game reserve....
Robert Rodriguez had put together a script for the film way back in 1994 before Fox finally greenlit the project 16 years later. Directed by Nimród Antal, it stars Adrien Brody, Topher Grace, Alice Braga, Laurence Fishburne, Walton Goggins, Louis Ozawa Changchien, Mahershalalhashbaz Ali, Oleg Taktarov & Danny Trejo. It was co-produced out of 20th Century Fox by Robert Rodriguez, who is frequently misidentified as the director.
- Absurdly Sharp Blade: All the edged weapons in this movie seem to dismember and decapitate with one blow. Justified in most instances because they're blades made by Predators, who even make their metal nets mono-molecular. Royce apparently sharpens his machete like crazy, too, since he decapitates a hunting dog in one hit.
- Abuse Is Okay When Its Female On Male: Isabelle punches Royce in the face and only gets glared at in return. This is either because he's Made of Iron, he's a chauvinist, or he's tacitly admitting he deserved it. Or all three.
- Actor Allusion: Noland (Laurence Fishburne) says he was Air Cavalry, was yanked from Earth in the sixties, and hums a few bars of "The Ride of the Valkyries".
- Alien Sky: A very impressive one. They all look like they're about to crack open and spill into space as massive clouds of broken rock and dust. Beautiful.
- Aliens Are Bastards: For the first time on film, we get to see Predators that actually deserve to die.
- All There in the Script: Only Royce, Isabelle, Nikolai and Noland give their names on-screen.
- Always Save the Girl: It must be a spinal reflex for Royce. When he has time to think about it, he'll leave Isabelle without a second glance; but when under fire, he invariably dives back into the fray to save her.
- Asshole Victim: Since many of the humans are pretty unpleasant people, this comes up a lot.
- Stans is the most obvious. The movie even plays with this trope a bit -- at first you think he's obviously evil, then you think he's not that bad when he calls out Royce on his dog shooting... and then he makes his "rapin' bitches" comment.
- If you know anything about the RUF, you'll realize that Mombasa is probably one of the worst person out of the entire group.
- One of the first things Cuchillo talks about once they figure out what's going on is to casually mention that he kidnaps and burns people alive for crime syndicates in Mexico.
- The Atoner: Turns out the reason Isabelle acts so tenderhearted is survivor's guilt. Of course, when Royce hears the story, he all but shrugs and says "You do what you have to do to survive."
- Audible Sharpness:
- The katana Hanzo finds makes a noise as it is unsheathed, and then another when he moves it slowly through the air.
- Even Edwin's scalpel produces a slight noise as he pulls it from its case.
- Back-to-Back Badasses - Several, usually with Royce, Isabella, and a third person.
- Badass: Every single character except for the doctor can be considered one, to greater or lesser extents. Special mention goes to Hanzo, who is the only character to fight an unweakened Predator in a one-on-one battle and get a draw. With a katana, no less.
- Bald of Awesome/Bald of Evil: Hanzo.
- Battle Strip: Hanzo and Royce both remove their shirts for their respective final battles.
- Belligerent Sexual Tension: Royce and Isabelle start out hating each other, but it quickly turns into a complicated and slightly sociopathic mating dance.
- The Berserker: Stans goes Knife Nut on the black predator - ironically, the predator's named "Berserker" in the script. This shows why he was chosen, and why he was left with just his knife. He gets respect from the guys with guns after this.
"Die, you space faggot!" STAB STAB STAB STAB STAB STAB.
- Better to Die Than Be Killed: Isabelle demonstrates this belief. Twice.
- Beware the Nice Ones: The doctor turns out to be a Serial Killer. Stans doesn't seem too bad but you work out he's probably a serial rapist and murderer.
- BFG: Nikolai's minigun. Even referred to as such by Stans:
"Come on, Russian, you got a big fucking gun!"
- Big Damn Heroes:
- Nikolai saves Edwin from a Predator, just when it seems he's done for.
- Despite Royce swearing up and down that he's a bad, bad man who doesn't care about anyone--and proving it when he trots off without a second look at dead or dying teammates--he doubles back under fire at least twice to rescue a comrade.
- Bittersweet Ending: Isabella and Royce are the lone survivors, both wounded and out of ammo and with no way home, only for more monsters and humans to get airdropped in, about to repeat the events of the film. This means Predators, which means there's another ship to hijack, and more allies to help them out... Of course, this is an obvious Sequel Hook.
- Black Dude Dies First: While technically the second to die, he is the first to be killed during combat with a Predator. The hispanic dude dies first.
- Blood Knight: The Predators themselves are obvious examples. In addition, Royce repeatedly states that the main reason he worked as a mercenary is because he likes the thrill of combat. The subtext suggests that all of the characters are, and furthermore, it's why they were chosen.
- Bond One-Liner: "You really are a good man." "No, I'm not... but I'm fast."
- Bottomless Magazines: Subverted. Whilst the main character's blasting in the first few scenes might lead one to believe this trope is being played straight, there's the "shell count" scene establishing their limited resources almost halfway through.
- Bread, Eggs, Milk, Squick: Stans has two great moments of this. First he talks about doing a whole bunch of cocaine, which Edwin finds funny. Then Stans starts talking about rape, which Edwin finds somewhat less funny. The second is when he shows off his tattoo, leading to...
- Brother-Sister Incest: When the gang sees that Stans has a tattoo of a bare-breasted woman on his chest (and even plays with it), another character asks, "Your girlfriend?" Stans says, "No, my sister." Edwin's face is priceless.
- Chekhov's Gun
- Canon Dis Continuity: This film ignores the two "Alien Vs. Predator" movies, although Word of God is unclear if it disregarded Predator 2 as well (Isabelle doesn't mention the events of the second movie, for what it's worth, but there are some minor nods to it).
- Captain Ersatz: Nikolai is a beefy, somewhat slow Russian with a minigun who makes friends with a bespectacled doctor - and one of his sons is named Sasha. He is Heavy Weapons Guy. He even screams while firing wildly at one point.
- Closer to Earth: Lone woman Isabella is the most compassionate character (though several of the men have their moments). Yes, the sniper is the most compassionate, and is thoroughly disgusted at Royce's attempts to leave the group or use them for his own gain.
- Cluster F-Bomb
- Combat Pragmatist: The Berserker demonstrates this during his duel with the Classic Predator. As soon as Classic starts landing a few good hits in the fight, Berserker introduces his plasma caster to it.
- Continuity Nod: Isabelle is the only human who knows about the Predators, because she's read the reports detailing events of the original movie.
- Cool Versus Awesome: A Yakuza Enforcer with a katana dueling with a Predator.
- Covers Always Lie: The cover art for the single-disc DVD seen above would lead you to believe that Laurence Fishburne and Danny Trejo play much larger roles than they actually do.
- Crazy Survivalist: Former U.S. Air Cavalryman Noland, with real emphasis on both crazy (he talks to an imaginary friend), and given the planet, survivalist –- having survived ten "seasons," though how long this is is a bit...vague, seeing as a new batch of humans was being dropped in just a few days after the first. He attempts to kill the team to get their gear and because they're dead weight for him, on the suggestion of his imaginary friend, and it's heavily implied he's done it before.
- Cultured Badass: Royce quotes Hemingway when describing his mercenary work - he likes the feeling of killing other men.
- Dangerously Genre Savvy: Royce makes a number of very smart decisions regarding the plot of the movie. He's the first one to figure out that they are being sent to the planet to be hunted, recognizes a booby-trapped body when he sees one, and uses his team as bait to lure the Predators out of hiding and figure out more about their size, shape, and technology, and his tactics against the aliens later play off of various franchise tropes.
- Death By Pragmatism: Noland.
- Death Trap: The first action sequence is a result of a huge number of traps set up by a long-dead Special Forces member, in a callback to the first film. One of the characters notes that the Predator bypassed all those traps and ripped him apart.
- Death World: The setting of the film is designed to be incredibly hostile to survival.
- Debut Queue: The five main characters appear one by one, seconds or a few minutes after each other.
- Developing Doomed Characters: The Predators don't make an appearance proper until after the group gets acquainted with each other and where they are.
- Did Not Do the Research: It appears that the writers for Isabelle's backstory comic forgot to read up on her character. It's not impossible that an Israeli girl went to Catholic school at some point, but it certainly begs for an explanation.
- Dramatic Irony:
- The characters spend the first half of the movie just trying to figure out where they are and how they got there, while the audience already knows all that, the identity of the hunters, and a good portion of the Predator's history with humanity to boot.
- Royce runs for the ship, unaware that his Predator ally has been defeated by the Black Predator, who then commands the ship to self-destruct. It's doubly ironic, because BP doesn't know Royce isn't on the ship.
- As Royce tends to a paralyzed Isabelle, the audience cringes to see the traitor behind him, talking casually, and the desperation in Isabelle's eyes--as she can see and hear, but not speak or move--only adds to the tension.
- Dressing as the Enemy: Laurence Fishburne's character uses a helmet from one of the Predators he’s presumably killed to detect other humans' presence.
- Dropped a Bridge on Him: Noland gets blown up seconds after he runs into a Predator, after having been established as a highly-skilled (if demented) survivor.
- To be fair, surviving by hiding and running is very different from surviving when you're actually confronted by a Predator and have nowhere to run.
- IT could also be another indication of how long he's been there. Rather than toy with Noland the Predator just kills him because there is no longer any sport in it. Quite frankly, the Predator is sick of hunting him.
- Dwindling Party: In effect throughout the entire film.
- Dying Moment of Awesome: Nikolai, Stans, and Hanzo.
- Enemy Civil War: Noland reveals there's a blood feud between two Predator Clans. Unsurprisingly, this becomes a plot point.
- Enemy Mine:
- Someone eventually gets the idea of exploiting the Enemy Civil War to their advantage.
- Lampshaded in a moment from a trailer (apparently removed from the movie) when Isabelle says that everyone needs to work together, another character responds, "Does this look like a team orientated group of individuals to you?"
- Even Evil Has Standards: Stans--the convicted, psychotic mass murderer and rapist--yells at Royce for leading them into a trap and getting Mombasa killed.
Royce: I needed to know what we were up against. Now I do.
- Everyone Is Jesus in Purgatory: In-universe: invoked and discussed right in the first scene, when Cuchillo assumes they are all in Hell, and Nikolai speculates it's a military psyche experiment. But it's immediately pointed out that you don't need a parachute to get there, and why would a military go to great lengths to construct a piecemeal jungle and slam together criminals, mercenaries, and soldiers?
- Everything Trying to Kill You: Including a Hungry Jungle, the Predators, their dogs, the other "prey" animals, and your fellow man.
- Evilly Affable: Stans may be a sociopath, but most of his lines are pure gold. Take, for example, his rant against the rest of the group after brandishing his shiv:
Stans:You know what? This is bullshit! I want a fucking gun! [to Cuchillo] Come on man, give me a gun! You got two fucking guns! [to Nikolai] Come on Russian, you got a big fucking gun!
- Face, Nod, Action: The Yakuza assassin simply stops walking in a field while the Predators chase them down. Royce, Edwin and Isabelle stop as well and look at the assassin, who simply looks at Royce and nods at him. Royce nods back and starts walking away again.
- Facing the Bullets One-Liner:
- Fake Nationality: The Russian, Mexican, and African actors match their character's ethnicity, but are American, and the Israeli is Brazilian.
- Fantastic Racism: There's an ongoing blood feud between the "classic" predators and the bigger, nastier "black" predators.
- Fatal Family Photo: Nikolai.
- Five-Man Band: Royce the hero, Stan the Lancer, Isabelle the Chick, Nick the Big Guy, Edwin the Smart Guy
- Foot Focus: When Hanzo's loafers get sucked into the muck, a rather long close-up shows him slipping out of his shoes and planting his bare feet stoically in the mud, squishing some through his toes for extra effect.
- When Royce figures out that one of their team members is being used as bait and says to leave him, the others leave in order according to how monstrous and/or noble they prove themselves to be over the course of the movie.
- Attentive viewers will know something's up when Edwin pulls out a photo of Nikolai's kids. Heck, tropers will probably know there's something up when he's introduced.
- Friendly Sniper: Isabella, who is noticeably the most compassionate.
- Grey and Gray Morality: Everyone chosen to be "hunted," with the exception of the doctor, are hardened killers, which means that all of them are unsavory one way or another.
- Gun Porn: Many of the guns get their own close ups, long and lovingly enough that firearm aficionados can read "Surefire" on the grip of Royce's automatic shotgun and "elcan" on Isabelle's scope, enjoy the sheen of Hanzo's pearl-gripped Beretta...etc.
- Heel Face Turn:
- After being freed by Royce, a Predator from an opposing clan sides with him (a good deed for a good deed, after all).
- Meta-example: Stans shows remorse at a character's death, even though he was fighting with him and had tried to kill him earlier.
- Heroic Sacrifice:
- Nikolai blows himself up in order to both take out the Predator he's facing down and save his group.
- Also, Stans playing dead to jump on a Predator's back and stab the hell out of it giving his teammates time to escape, and Hanzo, pulling a You Shall Not Pass moment and taking another one down.
- Honor Before Reason: The Predators always try to fight fair when possible, and play with their prey before killing it, much to their detriment.
- Incidentally, the only reason the Black Predators seem to fight fair is because they enjoy the hunt so much, and want to make it last. They don't follow very honorable standards the rest of the time, unlike their jungle cousins. For example, multiple Predators hunting at once instead of only one, taking prey to their own turf, and using hunting dog-like creatures to flush out their prey.
- Hot Amazon: Isabella.
Stans: Your ass is awesome.
- Humans Are Bastards: Our heroes are not nice people. Predators are bastards to each other, too. The Preds picked these Royce and the others because no one would miss them (being soldiers guilty of genocide or terrorism, heartless mercenaries, criminals, et cetera).
- Humans Are Warriors: Well, these guys are. Edwin is a noted exception.
- Hunting the Most Dangerous Game: The entire plot.
- Husky Russkie: Nikolai.
- I Did What I Had to Do: Frequently brought up throughout the movie. The Predators will use any means available to weaken or kill the main characters, which means the humans will have to make some "hard choices" if they want to survive.
- I Have a Family: Edwin tries this, even though he doesn't.
- Impaled with Extreme Prejudice
- Infernal Retaliation: In conjunction with hiding from infrared using mud, Royce hides from the Predator by surrounding himself with fire.
- Innocent Bystander: While the other abducted humans are military, Yakuza, criminals, or the like, Edwin is just some poor shmuck doctor snatched from his way to work. Or so it seems.
- Ironic Echo:
- When Edwin is injured, Royce wants to leave him behind, but Isabella protests that "He's one of us". Later, Edwin will argue "Please, I'm one of you," in very different circumstances.
- Stans mocks Mombasa after the latter dives into the detritus to avoid a deadfall with "Looking good, boss." Later, when Stans is lying on the ground covered in dirt and alien dog blood, Mombasa parrots the line back at him.
- A subtle one. When the group first meets Nolan, Royce asks him, "What the fuck are you?" and Nolan answers, "I'm alive." Nolan later shows part of the reason why, he's not above murder when it's for his own benefit. He gets the group to trust him then tries to kill them for their weapons, and it's implied he's done it before. Later, when Royce is showing a similar inhuman disregard for the life of Edwin (whose death would benefit him), Isabelle asks him, "What are you?" and Royce replies, "I'm alive."
- Internal Homage:
- Numerous to the earlier Predator films, from the entire plots itself, the Marine who set traps and the discovery of dead Special Forces surrounded by ammo casings, the references to the first films plot, Laurence Fishburne's character, the lighting used in the Predator ship and the flares (it mirrors shots and lighting in Aliens), among numerous others.
- The Enemy of my Enemy... is NOT my friend.
- Also, Predators hunt in threes.
- "You're one... ugly... motherfucker." (In Russian, though.)
- The big one's called Sascha. In addition, giant Russian with the minigun (who says aforementioned quote) pals around with the Doctor. May be a coincidence, though...
- The lead Predator has an Alien's jaw attached to his helmet as a trophy.
- There is a burning Alien's Head strung up in the Predators camp.
- Noland tells the others that every season, a new batch of prey is dropped in, "shit you wouldn't believe." He turns and giggles conspiratorially with his Imaginary Friend, but does seem to glance meaningfully at what looks like an acid burn on the wall behind him.
- When Noland first approaches the group, his whispers of "Over here, over here," and "Turn around, turn around," are much like Mac's whispers in the first film.
- Royce also does a word-for-word repetition of Arnold's "Come on, do it, kill me!" line from the original film during his final battle with the Predator.
- When Royce frees the Classic Predator from the totem and it does its neck grab on him it turns his head to one side much the same way the Jungle Hunter did with Dutch Schaeffer.
- Just like in the original Predator:
- A character stares intensely into the trees, and doesn't respond when a teammate asks what's up.
- A blade-wielding character suddenly stops fleeing in order to face the pursuing Predator, mano-a-mano.
- Characters fall uncontrollably down a hill and right into a river.
- A subtle one: A giant bug is impaled on a knife.
- A character unloads with a giant minigun into the forest. Later, every gun-toting character unloads into the trees.
- A character's weapon is blown in two by the Predator's weapon.
- Moments before death, a character's arm is severed. It was Dillon's in the first film, and the last Predator's in this film.
- Long Tall Sally plays over the closing credits, the very same song that Dutch Schaeffer and his team had blasting in their choppa.
- I Owe You My Life: Never said, but rather obviously how Nikolai and Edwin became friends and how Stans and Mombasa stopped trying to off the other.
- Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Royce for sure. Like your typical mercenary, he doesn't seem to care for the group in any real way. But of course, he has a change of heart by the end.
- Karmic Death: Stans, a convicted mass murderer, dies sacrificing himself for the team to get away, impaled and having his spine and skull torn out. Ironically, he was supposed to be executed in two days before the Predators selected him. The Doctor, after revealing he's a serial killer wacko type, is impaled, dragged through the mud while he pathetically begs for his life, and used as a grenade Death Trap to injure a Predator.
- Katanas Are Just Better: Completely justified. They're a hell of a lot better than a pistol that's out of ammo.
- Knife Nut: Stans, in part because none of the others give him a gun, but he certainly seems competent with it. He slows down a Predator long enough with it, but not enough to do any real damage.
- Ludicrous Gibs:
- Noland goes out like this.
- One of the dogs dodges the entire team's concentrated fire until it gets within about ten yards; then it dies in a literal explosion of gore.
- Male Gaze: The camera follows Stans' line of sight for about fifteen seconds. When Isabelle turns around, he just words it out: "Your ass is awesome"
- Maybe Ever After: Movie convention would seem to force Royce and Isabella together, but their circumstances and his personality leave the coupling in question.
- Mexican Standoff: Subveted. Stans puts his shiv to Mombasa's throat and demands a gun. Mombasa calmly but firmly jams a handgun under Stans' chin. Cue Oh Crap expression on Stans' face.
- Mood Whiplash: Halfway through the film, Stans says that he's going to do so much cocaine when they escape -- and then says he's going to rape some bitches. It then swerves back into funny when Edwin unenthusiastically agrees.
- Mr. Exposition: Noland's role is essentially to show up and clue the other characters (and audience) in.
- Multinational Team: American (including the poor Army sod at the beginning), Mexican, Sierra Leonean, Russian, Japanese, Israeli.
- Mutual Kill: Hanzo and the second Predator, Nikolai and the first Predator.
- Mythology Gag: The creature that chases Edwin in the jungle resembles the original design for the Predator.
- Never Trust a Trailer:
- One trailer (and the page image) shows Royce's upper body being covered in the iconic Predator three-dot laser, implying that there's a considerable number of Predators on the planet. In reality, there's only three, four Predators max. In the actual scene, it's only one target.
- Noland appears in the same scene, despite being killed soon after being introduced in the actual film.
- Neutral Female: Ultimately subverted, although it's a close call.
- Night Vision Goggles: Of course, given that the original movie popularized the imagery. The typical method of countering it is inverted, instead of smearing himself with mud, Royce fights off the Berserker by starting a raging fire, which makes his body heat signature lost among the background noise.
- No Name Given: For ninety-nine percent of the movie, the only one with a name is Nikolai. Isabelle and Royce introduce themselves in the penultimate scene, while the rest are named only in the script.
- No One Gets Left Behind: Royce does not subscribe to this, always prompting others to move on with "He's done." The first time, Isabella listens, but she refuses the second time, citing the risk of He Who Fights Monsters, and that if they give up their humanity to survive they’ve already lost.
- Not So Different: Royce says this almost verbatim to Isabelle, then taunts her with
"You do it for your country so you don't have to admit you like it."
- Obvious Trap: The Predators set one with the cartel member. The team doesn’t fall for it.
- Off with His Head: Two Predators and Stans get their heads sliced off... or ripped off, in Stans' case.
- One of These Is Not Like the Others: All the characters are seasoned killers, except for the doctor. Royce even lampshades it. In the end it turns out the doctor's a seasoned killer too.
- Only Sane Man: Edwin comes off as this, especially compared to Cuchillo and Stans. This makes sense since most of the others are a Psycho for Hire. Subverted, he's by far the craziest.
- Oh Crap: "Nice shot!" "...I missed." And they realize that they are so incredibly boned.
- Edwin's face, before that (he was used as bait to lure whatever was stalking them out).
- Ontological Mystery: Our main characters awaken in mid-drop into a strange jungle, armed with weapons, and no memory of how they got into this situation. Lampshaded when the characters discuss their situation and point out every single most used solution to the mystery: from a military training scenario to gauge stress reactions, to Hell. Later solved when they find out they're on a completely different planet.
- One-Scene Wonder: Maybe not quite one scene, but come on, Laurence Fishburne as Noland was easily one of the best bits of the film.
- Especially one of his first lines. Royce asks what the hell he is, and he simply whispers, "I'm aliiiiive."
- Outrun the Fireball: The characters try to escape the derelict ship before the explosion from Nikolai's claymores catches up to them.
- Parachute in a Tree: This is how the other characters encounter Edwin.
- Playing Against Type:
- Adrien Brody, known for being lean and playing nice guys, plays Royce, the ripped badass loner. Word of God is that they went with smaller guy because while real-life soldiers are in great shape, most aren't huge, burly guys like Arnold Schwarzenegger.
- Topher Grace in a hardcore action movie and turning out to be a Complete Monster.
- Precision F-Strike:
- '"FUCK! All of you!"'
- So I can find out who threw me out of a fuckin airplane.
- Pre-Mortem One-Liner: Nikolai gets one. In Russian, naturally: "You're one ugly motherfucker."
- Psycho for Hire: Royce and Cuchillo, maybe Mombasa. The other members are either too honorable to be psycho; or are too psycho to be for hire.
- The Quiet One: Hanzo, the Yakuza assassin. He lost two fingers on his left hand (and needs to use prosthetics) in the past because he "talked too much." Despite having a mere handful of lines, he has more presence than most of the rest of the cast combined, and one of the best scenes in the film.
- Rape Is a Special Kind of Evil: Everyone knows Stans is a murderer, but Edwin doesn't get discomfited until he starts talking about all the "fine bitches" he's going to rape when he gets home.
- Rated "M" for Manly: An entire cast of Badasses. And Topher Grace.
- Reality Ensues: With the guns, at any rate.
- Royce's automatic shotgun blows through ammo like a hooker through coke, and Hanzo's Beretta only holds fifteen rounds. Both run out of ammo about when they should, and the characters are forced to improvise.
- Isabelle's finely-calibrated--and thus finicky--sniper rifle jams in the midst of a fast-paced gun fight. Highly likely in the dirty, humid jungle environment they were in.
- Reality Is Unrealistic: Royce quickly deduces they are on an alien planet. Anyone going through the survival checklist a highly trained soldier would be familiar with would do the same.
- The Reveal: The humans are trying to figure out where they've been dropped. Cue the Alien Sky, with a gas giant and multiple moons!
- Rousseau Was Right: Despite being remorseless killers and insisting on being bad men, Royce, Stans, Nikolai, and Hanzo all act for the benefit of others at different points throughout the film, and chew each other out for not helping the group from time to time.
- Russian Guy Suffers Most: Subverted. His actual on-screen suffering isn't nearly as bad as any of the others, but since he has a family back home, Nikolai certainly has the most to lose.
- Sequel Hook: The ending has Royce and Isabelle still stuck on planet as a number of newbies are parachute-dropped in....
- Serial Killer: Edwin.
- Shoot the Shaggy Dog: Well, sort of, and thankfully not of the main plot. Nikolai sacrificed himself for Edwin, who turns out to be a serial killer hell-bent on staying, but he did manage to take out one of the Predators and ultimately save Royce and Isabelle.
- Sherlock Scan: Royce identifies the various groups within an hour.
- Shout-Out: See also Internal Homage, above.
- The music that plays during the end credits is "Long Tall Sally," the same music Dutch and his team are listening to as they're about to go into the jungle. Also a bit of Soundtrack Dissonance, given the Bittersweet Ending just before it.
- The title of the film is a reference to the title of the second film in the Alien franchise, Aliens.
- Single-Stroke Battle: The fight between Hanzo and the Predator.
- Sliding Scale of Anti-Heroes: Royce slides all around the scale like butter on a hot skillet, but the rest fall under their categories pretty neatly:
- Type III: Nikolai, Isabelle.
- Type IV: Mombasa
- Type V: Stans,Cuchillo; and they would be Villain Protagonists in any other story.
- Small Girl, Big Gun: Isabelle.
- The Smart Guy: Edwin, the otherwise hapless medical doctor, is able to identify plants and their various effects. Genre Savvy as they all are, the others quickly assume he's there in the capacity of The Medic.
- Sociopathic Hero: Stans and...well, everyone. Some just hide it better than others.
- Soundtrack Dissonance: An upbeat Little Richard song plays over the end credits. See Shout-Out above.
- Spikes of Villainy: The alien hunting dogs have more tusks, horns and antlers than anything ought to, but it sure makes them look wicked awesome.
- Stunt Casting: Used quite a but, but subverted, in that it's not the actor's fame that makes their appearance noteworthy, but their previous body of work.
- Noland steals the show in no small part due to Laurence Fishburne's acting chops, but add in the Hey, It's That Guy! factor, along with the Apocalypse Now shout out, and it's a perfect storm of "interesting things in that scene to talk about with other movie buffs."
- Topher Grace is cast so far against type it almost shocking to see his face in this movie.
- Danny Trejo is so very with type it's almost a nudge-nudge-wink in-joke with the audience--especially Robert Rodriguez fans.
- Summon Bigger Fish: Royce attracts the Predators with an explosion.
- Surveillance Drone: One of the Predators has a mobile scout that flies around and attaches to his shoulder. He's even called the Falconer.
- Survivor Guilt: It's Isabelle's main motivation; it's also notably lacking in Royce and the others.
- Rare Guns: The Atchisson Assault Shotgun (AA-12) makes its second appearance on the big screen.
- Taking You with Me: How one unfortunate merc takes care of a Predator.
- That's What I Would Do:
- Royce says this word for word when they are attacked by the alien dogs.
- Mombasa takes it one step further, giving a detailed description of a sadistic trap for human prey, then saying, "I know because I have done this."
- While they are all mulling over their Ontological Mystery, Tijujana gangster Cuchillo suggests they may have been taken for ransom, and goes on to describe the awful things they do to their victims.
- The Cast Showoff: Lewis Ozawa Changchien has practiced kendo since he was five years old, and insisted on using that style in Hanzo's fight.
- Title Drop: Isabelle says to Royce that they were chosen for the hunt because "we are predators. Just like them. We're the monsters of our own world."
- Token Good Teammate: In a band of mercenaries, gangsters, and killers, many of whom lack a clear conscience, Isabelle is clearly the only one who believes in doing the right thing.
- Too Shortsighted To Live: Edwin is dangerous in a way, but not to heavily armed soldiers or the even more physically imposing aliens. Even if Royce has left them, Edwin stands a much better chance of survival with Isabelle than wearing her scalp as a hat or whatever he had in mind. However, it's Justified by his nature as a serial killer, as such individuals rarely operate on a rational basis. As proof of his skewed perception, he expresses the belief that the Predators will accept him when they see he is a hunter like them; in truth, his method of hunting resembles theirs not at all.
- The Unfettered: Royce is seemingly this trope personified. He's called on it by Isabelle and Stans.
- Unflinching Walk: A Predator walks away casually without even looking at his own ship he's just detonated.
- Waking Up In Freefall
- We Have Reserves: Royce uses the rest of the team to set off a trap, disappearing to observe how the Predators operate. Needless to say, Isabella's pissed at him in the aftermath.
- What Could Have Been: Laurence Fishburne's character, Noland, was originally supposed to be played by Danny Glover, which would have been the perfect way to tie the film to Predator 2 as well as 1. Though whether Glover would've been playing the same character or not is unclear.
- What the Hell, Hero?:
- What You Are in the Dark: Where the whole planet is "the dark." Mostly, they pass the test, though a couple characters prove they're too selfish or crazy.
- With This Herring: Everyone starts out with whatever they were carrying before, so two of the characters only have knives. Lampshaded by Stans, who demands to be given a gun and nearly kills Mombasa for his, since all he has is a prison shiv.
- Worf Had the Flu: When the classic Predator faces the black Predator it has been tied up for a while and has poorly maintained equipment which are the main reasons why it loses. Despite this he puts up a fight and hurts him which may have given him the flu when he fights Royce.
- World of Badass: The deadliest hunters in the galaxy created a game preserve on a Death World by stocking it with the most lethal predators of Earth.
- Yakuza: Hanzo's an enforcer for them.
- Your Princess Is in Another Castle: The vessel going back to Earth is self-destructed after the Black Predator kills the Classic Predator.
- Yubitsume: Hanzo turns out to have two fingers sliced off because he "talked too much."