Ranking the deaths in Predator from worst to best
"There's something out there waiting for us... and it ain't no man."
With the arrival of The Predator in cinemas this week, we figured we'd go back to the 1987 original. In among the action beats and huge muscles, there is an incredible take-down of 80's action heroes by pitting them against the one thing they absolutely cannot kill (at least, until they can).
With just Arnie and Annie making it out of the jungle alive, but completely psychologically damaged, we're grading the deaths in the movie from worst to best, starting with:
Having already survived getting a smack of a tree, you might think that Poncho is going to survive because he's "messed up real bad". Instead he just kinda gets shot in the head and dies. Considering some of the exits the other characters got to make in this movie, this felt like they suddenly realised Poncho was still alive in the script and needed to kill him ASAP.
For the guy who loves to dry-shave his face, you'd expect him to get a pretty decent death. However, he spots the alien's target system on his arm, and then moves his own head into the line of sight. Boom. Dead. Long Tall Sally isn't going to be able to help him this time.
7. Everyone in that village
If it hadn't been for the image of that spaceship shooting something into Earth at the very beginning of the movie (as well as, y'know, the poster and trailer and stuff), you'd be forgiven for thinking this was a movie about Arnie taking out a group of jungle-based terrorists. This is the scene where they kill all the bad guys they think are responsible for taking out a helicopter full of diplomats. It also involves Arnie picking up a truck and turning it into a mobile bomb, and Blain saying "I ain't got time to bleed." It is when the men are at their most hyper-masculine, so the inevitably of a vagina-faced space demon picking them off one-by-one has all the more power to it after this.
6. The piggie
That piggie put up a good fight. RIP Piggie.
After the village attack, and all is well and good in the world again, they find Anna (who tries to make a run for it), but she is stopped by Hawkins (a young Shane Black, who would one day go on to direct The Predator), and he tries to talk reason into her. Instead, he gets killed by something, which then drags off his corpse. This is our first proper introduction into how good a hunter the alien actually is, and when the movie switches from action to horror.
The owner of Ol' Painless, he sets off to find whatever killed Hawkins, and in the process gets shot twice by the Predator's plasma cannon, one of which blows a hole right through the middle of him. You know the movie has some amazing deaths when seeing a man's rib-cage explode outwards doesn't even make the top three.
We don't even see Billy die on-screen, but we know it must have been pretty cool. Billy wasn't much of a talker, and was the scariest person on the heroes side, so when he decided to stop on that fallen tree, cut himself open with a knife bigger than most toddlers, and take the Predator on by himself, we anticipated an epic fight. Instead, we get just one chilling scream in the distance. This was the exact moment the viewers lost all hope for Arnie surviving to the end credits.
Dutch's bestie, and 50% owner of the greatest introduction of all time - "Dillon, you son of a bitch!" - gets maybe the most prolonged and glorious death in the movie, as he just about manages to survive getting his entire arm blown off (but it continues to fire the machine gun, regardless), and then gets pierced and picked up while screaming and, obviously, dying. The fear in his face as he realises that he actually not going to survive this is some supreme acting by Carl Weathers.
1. The Predator
Arnie has defeated the big bad alien, but instead of taking the defeat with good graces, he instead decides to turn into a maniacally giggling atomic bomb. Poor Arnie has to run for his life as the Predator chokes up his own glow-in-the-dark blood (which really doesn't vibe with the whole stealthy look it has going otherwise), but it is such an epic OTT moment, and after the intimate intensity of the final act of just Arnie V Predator, it is also supremely well earned.
In case you need a visual reminder of any of them, here they all are in their NSFW glory:
Clip via Kahel Rider