MOVIE REVIEW: The Thing (2011)

Wil Avitt
Wil Avitt's picture

The Thing was a 1982 science fiction/horror film directed by John Carpenter. It was based on a novella called "Who Goes There?" written by John W. Capmbell, jr. and originally published in 1938. The novella was first adapted as a motion picture in 1951 titled The Thing from Another World. Despite popular belief, John Carpenter's The Thing was NOT a remake of the 1951 film. More appropriately, it was an attempt to do a more accurate adaptation of the novella than the original movie had been. In that same vein, the new film is not a remake of the 1982 movie, nor is it another interpretation of the novella. Simply put, it is a prequel that couldn't have come up with a better name than just using the name of the original, The Thing.

To be honest, the new movie IS sort of a remake. It takes place in 1982, three days before the original John Carpenter film and it tells the story of the Norwegian camp that had already been destroyed by the time the first film opened. The final scene of the new movie is the opening scene of the original, two guys in a helicopter chasing a dog with a sniper rifle. It IS a prequel, but it's also a reamke in the sense that it tells pretty much the same story with different characters. You get to see where the alien came from (in the original all you saw was a block of ice that looked as though something had broken out of it and were left to presume that's where it came from), but it's still a story about people in the arctic trapped on a research outpost with an alien creature that kills people and then mimics their forms. If you ask me, I would label this movie as a "premake", but that's just me.

I thoroughly enjoyed this movie. It was scary, interesting, had a story that keeps the audience engaged and it told a good mystery. In keeping with the John Carpenter film, the creatures and the dead people are both realistic and grotesque, without crossing the line of just being gratuitous gore. Also, the CGI is some of the best I've ever seen in a film. All too often filmmakers seem to try and make their CGI stand out, so you can see where they spent all of their money. The CGI creatures doesn't leave you with the same dissatisfaction as the Jaws shark always did, on the contrary, the creatures looked so real that one doesn't even think about the monster, you just sit there and enjoy the film.

In closing, while it is getting slaughtered by the no-talent hacks whose paying gig it is to review movies (and as I pointed out in my review of Green Lantern, most of them don't even know how to write properly), The Thing is a very entertaining flick, sure to be enjoyed by any fan of the John Carpenter movie or of horror movies in general. The Thing is a testament to sequel/prequel/remake filmmaking.

Will Conservatives Like This Movie?

Being that the entire plot of the movie involves people being cut off from civilization and fighting for their lives, politics really wouldn't enter into it, now would it? If you enjoy graphically represented horror movies, you'll enjoy this one and whether or not you're for or against ObamaCare really won't make any difference.