Posted tagged ‘“The Thing” 2011’

Some “Thing” Familiar…

October 17, 2011

 – – I saw some Thing this weekend that was both some Thing old and some Thing new…namely, the prequel to the 1982 John Carpenter classic film of the same name.  The film was basically true to the mood and feeling of Carpenter’s previous epic, and has been criticized for not striking its own identity.  Heavy on atmospherics and paranoia, the new Thing is a dark movie…as well it should be.  The grandfather of the series, The Thing From Another World (1951),  was a classic film way ahead of its time, drawing in turn from the 1938 John W. Campbell novella, Who Goes There?

While the alien monster in John Carpenter’s film went out of its way to hide its identity and avoid detection, this prequel alien is much more visible, looking like a Lovecraft-inspired horror of claws, jaws, and flailing tentacles.  When we see the full-bodied creature scrabbling about, it appears part cephalopod and part crustacean, morphing as it assimilates and mimics the cellular structure of its victims and then hiding within them until the time for its next power play. 

We are taken inside the massive starcraft of the alien when the few survivors of the decimated Antarctic Norwegian research station decide to limit the contagion by tracking the creature home, and in the closing scenes of the movie the filmmakers provide seamless transition scenes to where the Carpenter film begins.  While some of the prequel’s characters are monster kibble, Mary Elizabeth Winstead turns in a strong performance as paleontologist Kate Lloyd, a woman who like Sigourney Weaver’s Ellen Ripley knows her way around a flamethrower…

Some “Thing’s” Coming!

September 27, 2011

 – – Wow, it doesn’t seem possible that it was way back in 1982 that John Carpenter made his version of the sci-fi/horror classic The Thing, complete with Kurt Russell as that film’s protagonist, R.J. MacReady!- –Well, some Thing else is coming this October, this version a prequel taking place three days before the events of the John Carpenter film and following the exploits of the Norwegian and American scientists unfortunate enough to originally discover the shape-shifting alien.

While it’s hard to beat Kurt Russell, the new version of The Thing includes Mary Elizabeth Winstead as Dr. Kate Lloyd, a lead character somewhat modeled after Sigourney Weaver’s Ellen Ripley in the Alien film series; fortunately, no romantic or sexual elements will be introduced associated with her character in keeping with the dark tone and paranoid atmospherics of the previous film.   Efforts have been made to keep the new film visually consistent with the 1982 Carpenter flick, and creature effects will include both animatronic and computer generated imagery.  We’ll be seeing much more of the interior of the crashed alien spacecraft, and it will also be implied what the nasty alien mimics were doing about in the galaxy.- -All in all, The Thing should serve to remind us that if we find something buried deep in the ice in Antarctica, leave it the hell alone!

I plan on seeing The Thing in October, and you may want to, as well…who knows, The Thing may become you!

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