The Thing (15)

Film

Science fiction

The Thing

Time Out rating:

<strong>Rating: </strong><span class='lf-avgRating'>2</span>/5

User ratings:

<strong>Rating: </strong><span class='lf-avgRating'>4</span>/5
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Time Out says

Tue Nov 29 2011

Is this a remake of or a prequel to John Carpenter’s 1982 Antarctic-set alien shocker? The answer is both. The Carpenter version indicated that the neighbouring Norwegian mission in the Antarctic had encountered the shape-shifting extraterrestrial before the Yanks, so here we get to see what happened to the plucky Scandinavians. The set-up, though, is essentially the same – snowbound scientists menaced by a being which can replicate their physicality with such precision it’s hard to be sure who is affected. That’s the core of the 1938 short story (left well alone by the Howard Hawks 1951 movie), and it’s a robust suspense scenario. So this version holds the attention, thanks in part to Mary Elizabeth Winstead as a spirited archaeologist, but offers little that Carpenter didn’t do far better. Efficient enough for newcomers perhaps, but never that chilling, and the predictably dull CGI underlines how far movie magic has regressed in the past couple of decades.

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Release details

Rated:

15

UK release:

Fri Dec 2, 2011

Duration:

103 mins

Users say

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<strong>Rating: </strong><span class='lf-avgRating'>0</span>/5

Average User Rating

3.9 / 5

Rating Breakdown

  • 5 star:9
  • 4 star:0
  • 3 star:5
  • 2 star:1
  • 1 star:0
LiveReviews|27
1 person listening
Michael

It says a lot about how seriously one should take movie critics (that is, not seriously at all) that I came here following a link supposedly to Time Out's negative review of Carpenter's 82 version, only to find it's transformed (Thing-like?) to a negative review of the 2011 version! One that, amusingly, contrasts it unfavourably with the same '82 version that Time Out's critic Geoff Andrews originally slated! The original (I don't count the ponderous-and-not-that-scary Hawks version, sorry) is a classic (one that, like punk a few years before, exposed how out-of-touch a generation of professional critics had become), and this prequel/remake (requel?) does as well as could be expected of it in filling in the events alluded to in that. It does everything 'well enough' but I'm not sure it was really needed. What it does do notably well is dove-tail seemlessly with the '82 version (both in terms of story details and in film style) - it deserves credit for its attention to detail in that regard.

andy

Entertaining enough for me.Carpenter's version was brilliant in it's day cause there was nothing else like it at the time.I thought this held up quite well though maybe lacked suspense compared the original.

Edward

Rob Bottin's special effects was 20 times twice as more realistic and creepy because he took the perfect time to do the creature puppets effects, and the special makeup effects. John Carpenter's 'The Thing' (1982) was one of my favorite mutation horror films. My personal thoughts are the horror film producers should do thousands to billions of new mutation horror films similar to this, take the time to do more special makeup effects, hire new puppeteers, and do lot more air-bladders special effects. And I also think they should do a lot of good sequels of 'the thing.'

Edward

Rob Bottin's special effects was 20 times twice as more realistic and creepy because he took the perfect time to do the creature puppets effects, and the special makeup effects. John Carpenter's 'The Thing' (1982) was one of my favorite mutation horror films. My personal thoughts are the horror film producers should do thousands to billions of new mutation horror films similar to this, take the time to do more special makeup effects, hire new puppeteers, and do lot more air-bladders special effects. And I also think they should do a lot of good sequels of 'the thing.'

Marsellus

I can't help thinking the reviews have all been a little harsh. While this film did have a lot of similarities to Carpenter's film, I thought it also tied in quite nicely and works well as a prequel. Of course you could argue that what happened to the Norwegian camp is best left to the audience's imagination but for those who want to pick at the scab, this film is for you. I agree that this film is a little too hack-and-slash though. Perhaps it would have benefited from a few more tension building scenes (as with Carpenter's film). Another small criticism is that the characters are paper thin and forgettable when compared to Carpenter's film (and even those characters were hardly well drawn). On the plus side, I thought the film was disgusting enough and shot in a similar enough style to sit beside the 80s one without it being completely obvious that there has been 25 years between the two films.

violetta

Find a DVD of the 1982 movie and enjoy - forget this plodding dog. It's not a film that sheds extra insight merely some shots of a spaceship - it's hard to imagine a voracious Thing building anything.

critique

Efficient pre-make, probably enjoyed more if you haven`t seen the original, but begs the question: aren`t there any new ideas out there?

Gareth

Yes Dull cgi the orignal looks better even 20 years on cgi, looks too obvious and unbelievable the way the creature moves. It show how heavily movie makers today rely so much of cgi that is distinctly fake. As for the movie itself complete rubbish, no character development or personality, no tension, just boo scares. The main character is so drab and has no personality to speak of, really didn't care about anyone in the film, poor poor directing from start to finish.

James

@martinezz. You sure you're talking about the same film we are? The Thing made in 1982?

James

@martinezz. You sure you're talking about the same film we are? The Thing made in 1982?

scrumpyjack

"Dull CGI"? Most of it was fantastic! Read TJ's review as it is good for one thing alone, "dull"ing your all ready "dull" expectations (as were mine) then delightfully finding that this is NO disgrace after all! "dull" is a word everyone would attach to THE DEEP BLUE SEA if they were honest...not this. 7/10 but if it were the first, then more.

AMT

I'd love to see the '82 review, no doubt TO slagged the original film off then

AMT

I'd love to see the '82 review, no doubt TO slagged the original film off then

Jason

I'd have to agree that the reviewer totally missed the boat. To say that the paranoia is lacking when the opening scene creates it so beautifully (no one here speaks Norwegian?) and the end encapsulates it perfectly is perplexing. The reviewer also seems to skip any evidence for commentary. heck, the movie scores on the paranoia with Morricone's simple heartbeat bass line. And "Superstitious" playing as the camera pans through the empty areas of the bass, until eventually setting on the dog as it walks into a room, and the shadow turns . . . Simply masterful. There are a few examples; the gauntlet's been tossed to the reviewer and the "this is just empty fanboy crap" folks. Justify, please.

Jason

I'd have to agree that the reviewer totally missed the boat. To say that the paranoia is lacking when the opening scene creates it so beautifully (no one here speaks Norwegian?) and the end encapsulates it perfectly is perplexing. The reviewer also seems to skip any evidence for commentary. heck, the movie scores on the paranoia with Morricone's simple heartbeat bass line. And "Superstitious" playing as the camera pans through the empty areas of the bass, until eventually setting on the dog as it walks into a room, and the shadow turns . . . Simply masterful. There are a few examples; the gauntlet's been tossed to the reviewer and the "this is just empty fanboy crap" folks. Justify, please.

Kevin

The premise of this film is quite suspenseful, but the execution seems to rely on natural squeamishness rather than generating genuine fear. By this standard an actual autopsy would count as horror.

Jason

Apparantly this reviewer didnt watch the movie, as it is one of the most eery horrors to hit the screens as well as an intelligent storyline. Reviewer Either didnt watch the same movie or wasnt intelligent to understand the delicate tension set up by Carpenter.

Jason

Apparantly this reviewer didnt watch the movie, as it is one of the most eery horrors to hit the screens as well as an intelligent storyline. Reviewer Either didnt watch the same movie or wasnt intelligent to understand the delicate tension set up by Carpenter.

TOMMY

This is a masterpiece plain and simple. It captures a real feeling of fear and paranoia with nobody able to trust anybody. Like the characters the viewer is never sure who is the alien and who isn't. The reviewer for Time Out clearly how has no appreciation for suspense and the sci fi/horror genre. Idiot.

TOMMY

This is a masterpiece plain and simple. It captures a real feeling of fear and paranoia with nobody able to trust anybody. Like the characters the viewer is never sure who is the alien and who isn't. The reviewer for Time Out clearly how has no appreciation for suspense and the sci fi/horror genre. Idiot.

True SF fan

The Time Out critic got it right. This is a ridiculously overrated piece of tripe drooled over by immature and illiterate fanboys who confuse gore and shock effects with genuine scares, and think elaborate FX are all a film needs. Despite the liberties the 1951 version takes, it is still one of the best and most intelligent SF thrillers ever made.

Geoff

Everybody gives this film 5 stars for a reason! If you want fantastic suspense and a sense of utter paranoia as well as superb special effect then this is the sci-fi / monster flick for you. It has a real sense of terror, a definite feeling of 'oh my God, where is it now, who's going to be next!' This film WILL give you the willies if you watch it on your own for sure.

Geoff

Everybody gives this film 5 stars for a reason! If you want fantastic suspense and a sense of utter paranoia as well as superb special effect then this is the sci-fi / monster flick for you. It has a real sense of terror, a definite feeling of 'oh my God, where is it now, who's going to be next!' This film WILL give you the willies if you watch it on your own for sure.

James Cameron

As I write this, The Thing from Another World has 88% on Rottentoms while JC's unarguably superior version has only 76% It is because of lazy and blatantly uninformed reviews like this one that this anomaly occurs. Quote: "In re-adapting the John W Campbell story (Who Goes There?) already filmed so superbly in 1951..." Reviewers should be careful when referring to sources that they haven't read. If he had, he would know that it actually bears very little resemblance to the 1951 version, aside from an alien lifeform in an Antarctic setting - the novella's intriguing central premise being ditched entirely in favour of standard man in a rubber suit fare. In fact, to call JC's film a remake at all is fairly tenuous. Stating that this film in any way resembles Scott's Alien makes me wonder if the reviewer has even seen JC's film at all! It is seriously NOTHING like it whatsoever! Even as mentioned the chest bursting scenes - not remotely similar. If anyone has any idea what this 'illogical ending' is referring to I'd love to know! And as for JC avoiding the paranoia of the original - dude admit it, you really haven't seen this movie have you???! Either that or you were blazing a doobie at the time because JC's film is at it's very zenith is a film ABOUT paranoia, unlike the admittedly classy yet daffy original which is about a man in a rubber suit. With respect, this reviewer should perhaps stick to writing reviews for dull tripe like English Patient

James Cameron

As I write this, The Thing from Another World has 88% on Rottentoms while JC's unarguably superior version has only 76% It is because of lazy and blatantly uninformed reviews like this one that this anomaly occurs. Quote: "In re-adapting the John W Campbell story (Who Goes There?) already filmed so superbly in 1951..." Reviewers should be careful when referring to sources that they haven't read. If he had, he would know that it actually bears very little resemblance to the 1951 version, aside from an alien lifeform in an Antarctic setting - the novella's intriguing central premise being ditched entirely in favour of standard man in a rubber suit fare. In fact, to call JC's film a remake at all is fairly tenuous. Stating that this film in any way resembles Scott's Alien makes me wonder if the reviewer has even seen JC's film at all! It is seriously NOTHING like it whatsoever! Even as mentioned the chest bursting scenes - not remotely similar. If anyone has any idea what this 'illogical ending' is referring to I'd love to know! And as for JC avoiding the paranoia of the original - dude admit it, you really haven't seen this movie have you???! Either that or you were blazing a doobie at the time because JC's film is at it's very zenith is a film ABOUT paranoia, unlike the admittedly classy yet daffy original which is about a man in a rubber suit. With respect, this reviewer should perhaps stick to writing reviews for dull tripe like English Patient

Adam

This movie is a classic. Only a moron would say it is a rip off of alien. Apart from the fact that has an alien they have nothing in common. This movie is not a "mindlessly macho monster mash" it has strong theme of paranoia, nobody knows who to trust and thats what makes the movie so great, not to mention possibly the greatest ending in a movie ever which people to this day still talk about. You either saw a different movie or you are retarded.

Adam

This movie is a classic. Only a moron would say it is a rip off of alien. Apart from the fact that has an alien they have nothing in common. This movie is not a "mindlessly macho monster mash" it has strong theme of paranoia, nobody knows who to trust and thats what makes the movie so great, not to mention possibly the greatest ending in a movie ever which people to this day still talk about. You either saw a different movie or you are retarded.