Tuesday, November 16, 2021

Double Review: THE THING (1982, 2011)

 Amazon.com: The Thing : Kurt Russell, Wilford Brimley, T.K. Carter, David  Clennon, Donald Moffat, Joel Polis, Richard Masur, Peter Maloney, Charles  Hallahan, Richard Dysart, Keith David, John Carpenter: Movies & TV
After a dog being chased by members of a Norwegian camp shows up at an American camp in Antarctica, horror ensues. 
The 1982 John Carpenter sci-fi / horror classic! I haven't seen this movie in YEARS and decided to watch it again, having read the source material fairly recently. See the notes on that at the bottom. I have been worried to go back and watch this because it's been so long and wasn't sure how it would hold up to the test of time. More on that in a moment. 
The movie starts off with the strangest chase scene. A couple of guys in a helicopter and chasing a husky across the snow. Shooting at it. Throwing GRENADES at it. Eventually the dog gets to an American camp. When the inhabitants come out to see what's going on the dogs runs into their midst. The gunman shoots one man in the leg, and gets paid back with a head shot. Oh, and the helicopter explodes. So now there is all the mystery. Why did these Norwegian guys show up, guns blazing, chasing after a dog? The decided to visit the Norwegian camp for answers, and got even more questions. Everyone is dead. The place is a wreck. Odd looking corpses. What looks like something was taken from a block of ice and even a UFO beneath the surface. 

All that and you're barely 15 minutes into this film. The rest of the movie is pure suspense and horror. Suspicion abounds. Death around every corner. 

After nearly forty years, the movie is STILL absolutely BRILLIANT.
More on IMDB

Amazon.com: The Thing (2011) [DVD] : Mary Elizabeth Winstead: Movies & TV
After what could potentially be the most historic scientific find, horror erupts at a Norwegian camp in Antarctica.
This isn't a REMAKE of the film from the 1980s but a PREQUEL. This movie has the backstory around everything that happened in the Norwegian camp, as the aftermath is seen in the movie from 1982. It starts from the beginning. There's a magnificent discovery that's going to change everything we know about the world and science, and ends up with everyone dead. The special effects are amazing. The story is consistent. You move through scenes and you have to say AH HA! as you remember them showing up in the film from '82. There is only one loose end that I can't reconcile in my mind. What happened to Kate (Mary Elizabeth Winstead) at the end? She's the only one NOT accounted for in some way. Other than that, I LOVED this movie! 
More on IMDB
What's most interesting is that these TWO movies pretty much bring together everything from the source material. I don't meant he old black and white movie, that I still haven't seen, but the 1938 novel WHO GOES THERE? by John W. Campbell, Jr. You can find my review HERE