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Alien vs Predator – Requiem

Year: 2007
Studio: 20th Century Fox
Director: Colin Stause/Greg Strause
It's got everything the kids love. Two of the most iconic monsters from the modern age of cinema. Violence, tension and mayhem. And - being a sequel to a movie based on a videogame idea that was based on two movies, it's a digital-era monster mash-up the likes of which licensing executives dream about.

With no big stars, deceptively simple effects and editing that tricks you into thinking it's much bigger and badder than it really is, Alien vs Predator 2: Requiem is everything it promises and nothing it doesn't. If you hated Paul W S Anderson's much-derided original, there'll be nothing for you to see here.

But if you want the cinematic equivalent of a monster truck battle with some slasher movie conventions thrown in, join the already-long queue at your cinema now. Somebody returned the original AVP's budget threefold, and they'll be doing the same for Requiem while the critics complain about the paper-thin characters, contrived plot and pat action sequences.

The last frame of the previous film showed us the birth of the Predalien, a hybrid of the two races with the nastiest elements of each. It grows up fast and razes the ship orbiting Earth, dismembering the Predator sentries and sending the craft crashing into the Colarado forest near the small town of Gunnison.

We meet the personalities who are going to get the girl, save the day, reconnect with their family, etc, etc, through various plot devices, all interspersed with a Predator fixer leaving his planet for Earth to clean up the mess with his various otherworldly tools.

But Gunnison is already infected after the Predators' stock of facehuggers have spread through town, producing a clutch of aliens who proceed to depopulate Gunnison, the now-huge Predalien stalking in the background.

The icons of both series are there, from the multiple tracking viewpoint of the Predators' heat and radiation-seeking helmets and their awesome weaponry to the scream of a dying alien under wheels or weapons. The music plays a major part in building the tension and AVP is a little more a horror than an action movie.

Fans will appreciate the final coda that stitches the film to the rest of the Alien franchise, and everyone else will either groan and roll their eyes at more of the same or lap it up for what it is.

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