The Thing / La Chose (Bilingual) [Blu-ray + DVD + Digital Copy]
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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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Top Customer Reviews
As it turns out, it is just another alien spacecraft and there is a frozen alien in the ice. Oh yes, there is also the proverbial storm on the way. The movie reminded me a bit of "Alien Hunter" which in turn reminded me of an earlier version of "The Thing."
The alien appears early in the movie and quickly gets filled with lead. If you have seen any of these films you know the rest of the story.
The "scientific" aspect was better than the previous films. I still didn't buy them performing the world's first alien autopsy and no one films it. The cells as viewed under a microscope was very primitive special effects, apparently they had blown their $8 million budget when it came time to create that scene and resorted to drawing pictures on cards and flipping them real fast. The rest of the special "Re-animator" type effects were fairly decent. Good one to see.
No f-bombs, sex, or nudity
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.Read more ›
Most recent customer reviews
Not a great film, but as a prequel and companion to the 1982 classic it works well enough.Published 4 months ago by Jim Steele
Wish they stuck to the practical effects, but Mary Elizabeth Winstead more than makes up for it.Published 9 months ago by James Upton
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