Tuesday, September 27, 2022

Review Tuesday: The Thing from Another World (1951)

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The Thing
From Another World
When an Air Force base in Alaska investigates a flying saucer, what they find is unbelievable. 
After I had read the novelization for the 80s movie THE THING, I realized I never saw the movie from the 1950s that the remake was based on. Or, was it???

This movie takes place during the 1950s. It's the height of the Cold War and Hollywood was Flying Saucer crazy. Getting their hands on the book WHO GOES THERE? the studio decided to make some modifications and updates due to the day and age. So, instead of researchers in a secluded base in Antarctica stumbling across a UFO frozen in the glaciers for hundreds of millions of years, the story was updated to a secluded Air Force base in Alaska detects a UFO and go to check it out. The military involvement and the Alaska scenario are two big departures from the source material. 

THE THING, in this movie, is some humanoid appearing creature that is really more plant-like in cell structure, and it has a taste for human blood. Oh! And despite being closer to vegetable than animal, fire seems to ho little effect on it. They had to defeat it with electricity. 

I had a lot of issues with this movie for various reasons. There were several scenes when everyone id just talking over each-other and since most of the men has similar voices, it just sounds awful and muddy. The unnecessary changes to THE THING actually made it worse. It just made n o sense that a plant man from another world also happened to be a vampire. Seemed like they were just trying to cram all they could into one film. When they were trying to get the UFO out of the ice, they seemed surprised that it self destructed when they placed the explosives directly on the actual craft! Plus, It also seemed really hard to believe that the Air Force would be dragging around a news reporter and would also let him get this story out before they even reported to their superiors. 

In all, I would say that I am glad I finally got around to seeing this. It's not a great movie and the deviations from the source material seemed to make the entire story suffer, in my opinion. But it's still worth the time to see this classic of horror / science fiction.
Oh! And Margaret Sheridan is nice on the eyes! 
margaret sheridan – the thing from another world | parlor of horror
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The Thing (From Another World) (1951)