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The Thing / La Chose (Bilingual)

Mary Elizabeth Winstead , Joel Edgerton    R (Restricted)   DVD
3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
List Price: CDN$ 14.99
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A masterful combination of gnawing paranoia and shockingly overt glop, John Carpenter's The Thing stands alongside David Cronenberg's The Fly at the absolute peak of remakes done right: movies that honor their source material, while following their own unique path. While this CGI-tricked-out prequel can't come close to equaling Carpenter's slow burn, it's by no means a disgrace, either. Much like Zack Snyder's Dawn of the Dead revamp (also produced by Strike Entertainment), this version of The Thing respects its predecessors, while amping up the action-movie rpm's. What it lacks in resonance, it mostly makes up for in enthusiasm. Set immediately before the events in 1982's film, the plot follows a Norwegian/American research team (including Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Joel Edgerton, and Ulrich Thomsen, amusingly made up to resemble the eggheaded scientist in 1951's original The Thing from Another World) who stumble across the frozen remains of an alien spacecraft. One ill-advised defrosting later, and the dwindling crew find themselves facing a viral enemy that duplicates its prey. Making his feature debut, commercial director Matthijs van Heijningen Jr. admirably attempts to replicate Carpenter's gliding camera and claustrophobic staging, with diminished yet still effective results. (Likewise the special effects, which, while inventively disgusting, lack the germy viscosity of Rob Bottin's landmark work.) Thankfully, the filmmakers do prove remarkably successful at recapturing its predecessor's sense of fatalistic xenophobia, with a slew of characters seemingly capable of Thinging out at any time. While the disquiet ultimately fades as the third-act explosions mount, this reverent redo succeeds to a degree that might give even scoffing purists a goose bump or two. Keep watching the skies, and stick around during the end credits. --Andrew Wright

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Most helpful customer reviews
9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
Format:Blu-ray
Well, at least they choose to go the prequel route instead of yet another dreaded remake. Two of my major complaints: first, the lack of suspense that made John Carpenter's The Thing so memorable. If you've seen a commercial for this film then you already know the fate of at least five of the characters, there's no sense of mystery or paranoia. It also fails to sustain suspense by giving the alien too much screen time, it is constantly revealing itself for some reason. Secondly, the effects. The CGI doesn't create that disgusting organic mess that chills your blood when you think back to the 1982 version. They might be good effects, but it just doesn't feel "real". On the plus side, the acting is all solid and the whole thing is polished and stylish. And it is interesting to see the story of what happened at the Norwegian station, though it could've easily been left to the imagination. All in all, it was an entertaining movie that tries to stay faithful to the 1982 The Thing, but will never hold a candle to its predecessor.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars It's all about the gooyness Jan. 6 2012
By Andre Farant TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:DVD
Okay, first off, I have no real problem, in principle, with the recent spate of Hollywood revisits to older material. There are bad remakes and good remakes, just as there are good original ideas and bad original ideas. That a film is a remake does not immediately make it bad (Rise of the Planet of the Apes is a case in point). I ask only that the new movie offer something truly new to prove its worth and right to existence.

This is actually a fairly tall order, given that the movies Hollywood chooses to remake tend to have been good ones to begin with, and so difficult to improve upon. The huge advances in technology, though, allow current filmmakers to jazz up even the most expertly designed originals, especially those movies that relied, all those years ago, on cutting edge special effects--movies like John Carpenter's 1982 version of The Thing.

And let's be honest, Carpenter's The Thing is considered a modern classic only due to its special effects--special effects which were undeniably impressive for that time. It was not an especially suspenseful movie, despite the paranoia inspired by the creature's shape-shifting abilities, and it was far from subtle, giving the alien plenty of camera time. But those special effects were pretty damn cool, especially for '82.

Oh, and let us not forget: Carpenter's The Thing was, itself, a remake. It was based upon a 1951 movie titled The Thing from another World. Both movies were based on a novella, Who Goes There?, by John W. Campbell. That oldest of the movies took a slightly different approach to the source material, eliminating the alien's shape-shifting abilities, and giving it the appearance of, well, Frankenstein's monster. The 1951 and 1982 versions share only a basic premise.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars a solid sci fi movie Jan. 29 2012
By chris1
People who rate this movie at less than 3 stars don't know what they are talking about and if you enjoy the genre, it is about an 8/10. Remember that the 1982 Thing had HORRIBLE reviews when it came out and the movie lost money at a time with no blurays or home theater(and today, everyone says it was genius). The mood and visual style is essentially a copy of 30 days of Night, not a bad style for this type of movie. The movie makes an honest effort in the story (these stories rarely stick together THAT well) and the acting is very good. The best part of the movie is the tension amoung the different characters gives the movie its 8 on 10 and the actual creature effects makes me understand why someone would give it only 3 stars. Still, solid movie (in its genre). Of course they will overcharge for the purchase, so I suggest you rent. In the genre, it is definitely a top 20 of the 21st century (though there isn't much competition).
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5.0 out of 5 stars The Thing Blu-ray (prequel) Sept. 14 2014
Format:Blu-ray|Verified Purchase
I had the original The Thing with Kurt Russell and had viewed it a number of times.
I wanted this one which is classed as a prequel and wasn't disappointed.
There's lots of action and I plan on viewing this movie again in time.
Any movie that's good enough to view again and again kind of says it all.
I'm happy with the purchase and would recommend it to my friends.
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10 of 13 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A nostalgic piece of great fanfare Jan. 18 2012
By Derek Draven TOP 100 REVIEWER
Part remake and part homage, The Thing is actually a full-fledged prequel to the John Carpenter 1982 classic of the exact same name. Set in Antarctica during the early 80s, the film explores the story of the Norwegian research camp which discovers a parasitic alien life form which can absorb living matter and reproduce it perfectly at the microcellular level. How does this newest entry fare after 30 years of waiting?

In order to properly review The Thing, one must learn a bit about the history of the franchise. Original director John Carpenter was a huge fan of the 1950s camp classic 'The Thing From Another World,' which was loosely based on writer John W. Campbell Jr.'s 1938 novella 'Who Goes There?' Decades later, Carpenter made his own version of the film which was much more faithful to Campbell Jr.'s original story and featured the alien entity in the way it was meant to be seen: a doppelganger waiting for the opportunity to strike in the darkness.

Duch director Matthijs van Heijningen Jr. takes the helm for the prequel, and his love for Carpenter's original film is obvious in every single frame of the movie. It's impossible to keep from admiring a director who purposely turns down digital film in favor of anamorphic 35mm print in order to stay close to the feel of the first film. Just like the alien entity itself, The Thing is a direct copy of its parent film in terms of scope and pacing. This is classic horror that prefers to build with slow tension instead of rapid fire editing and glossy special effects. For all its dedication however, The Thing is rarely scary, only managing to frighten the audience with a few carefully timed shocks, leaving the rest too predictable for today's moviegoers.
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Most recent customer reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Pretty Good homage to the Original
I loved the original movie and if you too liked the original than this is worth a viewing for sure.
Published 3 months ago by MAG
2.0 out of 5 stars Garbage
It adds nothing. I hate when people use the saying, but this is a remake for remakes sake. It builds the same tension that made the unpredictability of the original so tense. Read more
Published 11 months ago by Jesse
5.0 out of 5 stars parfait
Livraison dans un délais rapide et la marchandise dans un état des plus satisfaisant, très heureux d'en faire l'ajout à ma collection.
Published 17 months ago by Steve Dumas
4.0 out of 5 stars Just watch it for yourself and decide
I am another person who is a big fan of the original movie from 1982, so i was hestitant to watch this movie because of preconvieved notions in my mind. Read more
Published 18 months ago by Torie Monaghan
4.0 out of 5 stars Pretty good prequel!!
I'm not much of a reviewer, but I like the fact that that they followed the first movie to me the people who created the movie did a good job.
Published 19 months ago by David
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Prequel to Orignal Film
I Loved This Movie. wasnt as Freaky as the First but it Certainly made for a nice Story of other camp. Read more
Published 22 months ago by Shadowarez
4.0 out of 5 stars Frozen Fears
...The trend to re-visit Science Fiction classics with the hopes to re-kindle the franchise and create a new audience generation has produced two similar prequels in recent times. Read more
Published on Sept. 8 2012 by Burton Sundquist
3.0 out of 5 stars Good for a view....... Carpenter's thing is much better...
I enjoyed viewing this film the first time...nice effects, first big scene was
great, and the movie hummed along and eventually ended. I was satisfied. Read more
Published on April 11 2012 by Andre Villemaire
5.0 out of 5 stars I'll Tell you a Thing or Two!
As a bona-fide fan of the original "The Thing", I had no idea what to expect when I went to see "The Thing". But I was so surprised! I absolutely loved it! Read more
Published on March 20 2012 by lanholm
3.0 out of 5 stars ***Spoiler Alert Ahead*** ---- just "things" to think about
I actually give it no stars for 2 reasons (there's no option for no stars but I decided to give 3 anyways just to be fair): I've seen this in the theaters but I don't have the... Read more
Published on Feb. 11 2012 by J&B Rare
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