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Thing From Another World [DVD] [1951] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC]

Kenneth Tobey , Margaret Sheridan , Christian Nyby , Howard Hawks    DVD
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (59 customer reviews)
Price: 5.09
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Region 1 encoding (requires a North American or multi-region DVD player and NTSC compatible TV. More about DVD formats.)

Note: you may purchase only one copy of this product. New Region 1 DVDs are dispatched from the USA or Canada and you may be required to pay import duties and taxes on them (click here for details). Please expect a delivery time of 5-7 days.

Frequently Bought Together

Thing From Another World [DVD] [1951] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC] + Invasion of the Body Snatchers [DVD] + It Came from Outer Space [DVD]
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Product details

  • Actors: Kenneth Tobey, Margaret Sheridan, James Arness, Robert Cornthwaite, Douglas Spencer
  • Directors: Christian Nyby, Howard Hawks
  • Writers: Howard Hawks, Ben Hecht, Charles Lederer, John W. Campbell Jr.
  • Producers: Howard Hawks, Edward Lasker
  • Format: Black & White, Closed-captioned, DVD-Video, Full Screen, Subtitled, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish, French
  • Region: Region 1 (US and Canada DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 4:3 - 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: Unrated (US MPAA rating. See details.)
  • Studio: Turner Home Ent
  • DVD Release Date: 5 Aug 2003
  • Run Time: 87 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (59 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00009NHC0
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 105,982 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)



With its modest special effects, lean plot, and small cast of lesser stars, this 1951 thriller remains a sturdy blueprint for fusing horror and science fiction. The formula has been employed countless times since, fleshed out with more extensive and elaborate production values, and manned by higher profiled marquee names, but the results have yet to improve on The Thing from Another World, Howard Hawks's lone foray into sci-fi. The story begins as military airmen are dispatched to a remote Arctic research station where scientists have detected the crash of a spacecraft. An effort to retrieve the saucer-shaped vehicle fails, but the team returns to the station with the frozen body of its sole occupant. When the extraterrestrial pilot is accidentally thawed, the crew, headed by a tough-talking pilot (Kenneth Tobey), grapples with a massive, chlorophyll-based humanoid (James Arness) thirsty for blood and in no mood for galactic diplomacy. Hawks takes only a production credit for this low-budget exercise, but his filmmaking style transcends Christian Nyby's nominal direction: rapid-fire, overlapping dialogue, an ensemble of comrades whose professionalism is tempered by wisecracks, and unsentimental female characters (embodied by feisty romantic interest Margaret Sheridan) recall Hawks's signature works, while propelling the plot over any potential gaps in credibility. It's hardly surprising, then, that The Thing from Another World remains among the most influential science fiction movies ever shot, or that it remains exciting entertainment a half century later. --Sam Sutherland

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good 50s Creature Feature 26 May 2011
This is a classic B&W 50s Creature Feature. The print is good quality with no issues with either the picture or the sound. The film is set at the North Pole where a team of military and scientists investigate a fallen meteor that turns out to be a crashed flying saucer. In trying to recover the saucer it sinks beneath the ice but they are able to retrieve the body of an alien in a block of ice.

The alien, inevitably, is not dead, is able to escape from the block of ice, and runs amok through the ice station, killing all in its path. The film turns into a game of cat and mouse but as the humans disappear and the heating gets switched off, the viewer begins to question who is chasing who. The humans are snowed in by bad weather so they have to deal with the alien on their own. Any help would arrive far to late.

This is a tightly scripted film with dialogue spat out at machine gun pace. There are several stock characters; the wisecrack reporter, the mad scientist, the rugged hero who always gets his gal. With a small cast trapped in a small set, the plot relies on tension between personalities rather than plenty of CGI shocks that you would get in a similar film now. The alien owes its appearance more to Frankenstein's monster than the typical portrayal at the time of little green men.

This is the film that the 1982 John Carpenter film, The Thing is based on. There are similarities in the situation and basic premise but after that plots are very different. This film has stood the test of time very well and should be essential viewing for all scifi buffs.
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50 of 56 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A classic of its kind. 12 Feb 2007
By Johnnybluetime VINE VOICE
This is without doubt the best of the '50's aci-fi movie's that followed the onset of the Cold War.It's a simple story,a monster on the loose in a restricted and restrictive enviroment,in this case a scientific station in the Arctic.An airforce crew are sent to investigate reports of an aircraft crashing nearby,which turns out to be a flying saucer.Nearby,encased in the ice,is the pilot and when he defrosts it turns out he's in a mighty hungry after his long journey.And,unfortunately for some of the residents of the station,on the planet that The Thing is from, evolution has taken a different course to ours and vegetables drink blood.Human and animal.

Sounds pretty formulaic,but what really sets this film apart is the acting,direction and script.A fine ensemble cast bring interest to even the most minor characters and Kenneth Tobey,Margaret Sheridan and Robert Cornthwaite give their best performances along with several others.That's down to the dialogue;often smart and sassy,overlapping like a good Altman movie,and when it gets technical it stays believable.

Nothing stays still for long,something's always happening, but the tension,and the film actually is tense despite being 56 years old,is maintained by largely not showing the monster.We catch glimpses;in the distance in a snowstorm,through a briefly opened door,in the chaos and confusion of a fire.Enough to satisfy us,but not so much we take it for granted.

In the past there have been claims made that Howard Hawks directed it,even so the name on the credits still says Christian Nyby ,but whoever did it did a damned good job.
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23 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars In B&W or COLOR it's still one of the greats! 11 May 2007
By Kirk H
I rate this 5 stars for the film itself and for the commentary by Carpenter (it's about time someone did this!). I would rate the color version at least 4 stars. Although people scream and screech about the colorized version, I find it very interesting. In some ways it's like seeing the film for the first time again. My eyes are drawn to things I never noticed before. It still is rich with atmosphere like the black and white version, and unlike a lot of colorized films, I think the color palette in The Thing is quite effective. Having said that, of course, the black and white original is the standard and the proper way to first see the film. But, come on folks, it's not like the color version is supplanting the B&W, as this release proves. The only thing about the color release is that it's the edited 80 min version, not the complete 87 min. film, hence 4 stars. A 7 minute sequence between Kenneth Tobey and Margaret Sheridan where she expresses her feelings about the meaning of "that thing in the ice" and a following scene where she jokes with him romantically, and she's thinking he's tied to a chair in her office, is missing. This 7 minutes is present on the black and white version, however. On the other hand, in some ways, the film's pace seems to work better without those 7 minutes. Either way, this is a great great science fiction film, likely the most sophisticated of its era, and I don't agree that this release is a rip off.
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28 of 34 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The King of B-Movies! 14 Dec 2003
By Deborah MacGillivray HALL OF FAME VINE VOICE
I am a sucker for old Black and White horror/Sci-Fi. This is one I bought on VHR and then on DVD. I am sure years from now when they have another format, I shall buy it once again. I just enjoy it that much.
The Special Effects are not too much. The great winter scene they filmed when finding the spacecraft was filmed in the desert!! The Thing is Matt Dillon (no, not the actor but Matt Dillon of Gunsmoke - James Arness! Marshall Dillon what wuz you doin' at the North Pole?).
Where this film keeps is high rank and respect, is through taut direction, fast pace and strong performances from character actors such as Kenneth Tobey, Dewey Martin and Robert Cornwaithe. Based on John W. Campbell Jr.'s story "Who Goes There?", it's a handful of Air Force lads against the evil menace battling to the death to save the world. Christian Nyby is credited with directing this, though many swear it was really Howard Hawks (and it has the trademark of many Hawks films).
It's interesting to compare John Carpenter's version done in 1982. Carpenter how did previous take off on Another Hawks' film, and in this one reversed the sense of US against IT, by making his crew doubt each other (more true to Campbell's story).
Both film are interesting on many levels, but the main 'THING', they are great fun!
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
great movie, if you haven't seen it, watch it!!!
Published 10 days ago by IpswichBob
5.0 out of 5 stars Great
Arrived in good time and quality fine, this was the first film we had a on video and had looked for it for a while, very happy to get it and brings back memories enjoyed the film
Published 10 days ago by Mrs C A Smonds
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
Good classic Science Fiction film
Published 10 days ago by Stephen Kay
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Great product. Came on time, and works just great
Published 22 days ago by David
2.0 out of 5 stars not as good now
Watched this as a kid , what seemed good then unfortunately hasn't stood the test of time , you rarely see the creature which after all is the essence of the film ..... Read more
Published 1 month ago by crofty
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
Classic 50's sci fi
Published 1 month ago by Mark C Enders
4.0 out of 5 stars One of the "must-see" films of Classic 50's Sci-Fi
This is not a modern special-effects blockbuster so it is not fair to compare it with the modern re-makes or prequels. Read more
Published 3 months ago by Jim__Leeder
5.0 out of 5 stars Awesome
This is my favorite movies of all time. I am surprised it took me so long to buy it. I still have not watched the colorized version though. Read more
Published 4 months ago by PaulPlumb
4.0 out of 5 stars The thing before "The Thing"
Everybody knows and loves John Carpenter's "The Thing," a tale of a shapeshifting alien horror adapted from a John W. Campbell novella. Read more
Published 6 months ago by E. A Solinas
3.0 out of 5 stars Oldie movies
The old blob monster scary when your younger,good watch though I love all the old movies if your a fan you may like this one
Published 6 months ago by Martin j Trigg
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