The Thing

The Thing

"Now I'll show you what I already know"

Gross

In a good way.

The Thing is directed by John Carpenter (Halloween, They Live) and starts Kurt Russel as R.J. MacReady, a straight-forward, bearded man, trying to survive amongst his ecstatic coworkers as they all suspect one another to be of alien descent.

So, what did I like? The best parts of this movie, are in the puppet-work and cinematography. I was doing some research, Dean Cundey (who did cinematography) also did the cameras for Jurassic Park. Clearly the guy knew what he was doing, because my god these shots were impressive. Set out, beautifully, to enclose our survivalists and capture the arctic tunnels this creature may or may not dwell in. The puppet-work is something else. Kooky looking, grotesque alien-human-dog hybrid bubble that attacks and devours, they are controlled so well for the time. I like the certain build ups of tension, going one by one through the researchers, the blood test scene is sublime and the ending attack creeps up well. I was most surprised at how amusing some of the dialogue is, great quips, talking back, it all sort of adds to the distrust between our characters. Also, the score by Ennio Morricone is satisfying to say the least.

What didn't I like? Well, there's not much bad in The Thing. It gets from A-B and it gets there in time. There is however, a lack of tension in the second act. If you enjoyed the scene in the hateful eight where Samuel L Jackson trudged through the snow by Minnie's Haberdashery for 5 minutes then you'll love this movie no doubt about it. Personally, I felt that Carpenter could've included more investigation on the origin of the creature for the ending. What Alien did so well 3 years prior to The Thing's release is that it gave a life cycle to the creature. Carpenter was half-way there on the creature front in the sense he got the 'copy-cat' aspect down. I just would've preferred a bit more interest. You never really care for these character's either, they're mean to each other, and you never find out if there's any purpose they serve that may of added to the tension. Ah well.

In the end, The Thing is no Alien, but hell it is solidly crafted. Great effects and camerawork make this no forgettable endeavour, and there are some stunningly chilling scenes as well. Skin-crawling comes to mind.

freddie_kayy liked this review