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31 Days of Horror: THE THING (1982)

An alien organism crash lands on the continent of Antarctica and is discovered by a Norwegian research facility. The Norwegians soon discover that the organism is a parasite that assimilates other organisms and imitates them to survive. With the Norwegians ultimately failing to stop the alien organism, it has now managed to infiltrate an American research facility where paranoia and gore ensues. No one can be trusted, not even the amazing Kurt Russel.

Pros

  • Beautiful use of Antarctica as an alien, claustrophobic setting.
  • Wonderful pacing, with a gradual build up and the right amount of shocking reveals.
  • Suspenseful and mysterious.
  • Practical effects, practical effects, and practical effects. Yes, a time when CGI didn’t ruin everything.
  • Ennio Morricone and John Carpenter’s minimalist electronic score.
  • Kurt Russell

Cons

  • Some lines come across as campy, but the fact that most of them are done by Kurt Russell is excusable.
  • Even if you’ve never seen the movie, someone has likely ruined the twist for you by now.

Overall

John Carpenter’s The Thing originally wasn’t met with open arms and was heavily criticized by a lot of traditional movie critics. Now, however, as time has passed, the film has gained a great following and a lot of reappraisal for its wonderful practical effects and suspenseful story-telling. It definitely deserves it and is still a great film to experience to this day.

The film does  a wonderful job of gradually building up towards the shocking reveals, with a lot of mystery and suspense in its opening sequences, while rewarding the audience at the right moments so as not to completely leave you in the dark. All of the suspense and mystery is wonderfully accompanied by its Antarctic setting. The setting provides that alien feel, where it’s basically deserted — minus a few scattered research facilities — and the claustrophobic nature of it all, since there’s nowhere to run and all the characters can do is survive.

Of course, it wouldn’t be a John Carpenter film without an amazing score to set the tone and feel for the movie, yet this film is different since it was mostly composed by Ennio Morricone. Never the less, it still embodies that distinct John Carpenter 80’s sound.

If you’re tired of the constant use of ghosts and evil spiritual entities in your horror movies, then pop in this classic and be freaked out by grotesque practical effects and weird alien assimilation scenes. Also, the fact that Kurt Russell is in it, is reason enough.

 

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Categories: Movie Reviews

Author:David Rix

I believe that, one day, I can become Spider-Man. Read more of my dumb ramblings here: www.psgetalife.com or follow me on Twitter @Epiawestastic.

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One Comment on “31 Days of Horror: THE THING (1982)”

  1. 10/29/2015 at 8:15 AM #

    Reblogged this on Press Start: Get a Life!.

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