I’d be into the Robert RodriguezNimrod Antal Predators (20th Century Fox, 7.9) if I was even half-persuaded that Predators will be to the original Predator what James Cameron‘s Aliens was to Ridley Scott‘s Alien — i.e., faster, more intense, emotionally grounded, a general uptick.

But of course, that can’t be. Not with Rodriguez’s B-movie aesthetic defining the perimeters. I respect Antal (Kontrol, Vacancies), but the fact that Rodriguez played Big Alpha Kahuna at last night’s South by Southwest preview tells you it’s basically his film. Wall Street Journal/Speakeasy‘s Eric Kohn filed a report early this morning about the event.

There’s almost nothing in the filing about about Kick Ass, which also screened last night. All Kohn says is that it’s “a vibrant take on the superhero movie genre.” That’s it? In other words, it’s a ho-hummer, a disappointment? It sure sounds that way because his next line says that Rodriguez’s Predators preview “stole the show.” That’s a little bit of a review, no?

Kohn’s full-on Kick Ass review is forthcoming.

Indiewire‘s Anne Thompson called it “a nasty hard-R superhero spoof designed to outrage and delight. And it will destroy at the b.o. when Liongsate opens it in two weeks.” “Nasty”? “Designed to outrage”? In other words, lacking in wit, cleverness, refinement. Sure sounds that way. Made for the animals.