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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A perfect study in terror and paranoia
Like so many of the other reviewers here this thoroughly excellent Sci-Fi Horror from John Carpenter has been a long-standing favourite of mine; I owned it on VHS, then DVD, and it was the first film I bought on blu-ray. The transfer to blu-ray is superb, crisp, detailed, and makes the movie look as fresh as if it were made yesterday.

The movie itself (based on...
Published on 9 Nov. 2009 by Rob Payne

versus
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Am I the only one who had a problem?
5 Stars for the US Version, not the UK version.

I love this film, have always loved this film, so much so that I recorded it on VHS, then bought it on VHS, then bought it on DVD region 2 which was not anamorphic, so I re-bought it on Region 1 (which is). It is the first film I decided to buy for myself after buying a blu-ray player and burrowing others films to...
Published on 27 Oct. 2009 by B. J. Davies


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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A perfect study in terror and paranoia, 9 Nov. 2009
By 
Like so many of the other reviewers here this thoroughly excellent Sci-Fi Horror from John Carpenter has been a long-standing favourite of mine; I owned it on VHS, then DVD, and it was the first film I bought on blu-ray. The transfer to blu-ray is superb, crisp, detailed, and makes the movie look as fresh as if it were made yesterday.

The movie itself (based on the novella 'Who Goes Where?' by John W. Campbell Jr., and a little more faithful to the book than the 1951 Howard Hawkes effort 'Thing from another world') is a pretty much perfect study in terror and paranoia as a team of Antarctic researchers are terrorized by a shape-shifting alien uncovered from beneath the ice. It fared poorly at the box-office upon its release, perhaps partly due to the concurrent opening of a certain other alien film called ET, though it has since garnered the following and recognition it deserves as one of the very best and most influential films in its genre. Just as in his earlier effort `Halloween', Carpenter proves that he is a master at audience manipulation. When the shocks come, they are outrageous and visceral (just watch out for the defibrillation scene), and the escalating terror and hysteria of the remaining researchers as they are picked off one by one is perfectly played by a cast headed by Kurt Russell. Ennio Morricone's bleak and atmospheric score is used to complement the feeling of isolation and desolation. Though lambasted by many reviewers at the time for its over-the-top grisliness, Rob Bottin's make-up and effects are superb (no CGI here), bizarre and imaginative and fit the mood of the film perfectly. It is worth noting here that Bottin, only in his 20s at the time, worked so hard on the effects that he was hospitalised with exhaustion after filming.

An outstanding movie with a near perfect transfer to HD.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Really grim, 11 May 2007
By 
Mr. S. Crook (Way out west) - See all my reviews
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But in the best possible way.

I first saw this film at the cinema when it came out in 1982. My abiding memory is the stunned silence from the audience at what was unfolding on the screen in front of them, and the film certainly delivers it's fair share of shocks. Early on, the dog handler has set the alarms off and when Macready (Russel) arrives the handler says to him "There's something in with the dogs, I don't know what it is, but it's weird and pissed off". Not half it isn't.

I've watched it a number of times over the years and it still impresses on all levels. The direction, music and the setting and acting all contribute to the increasing sense of paranoia experienced by all the characters in the film. Apart from Kurt Russel the cast were relatively unknown but they all acquit themselves well. IMO it's probably Carpenters best work.

The special effects are something of a high water mark for animatronics and models, and have only recently been surpassed (and then only just) by films with a lot of CGI.

The only question I'd have is why an Antarctic research station appears to have large quantities of explosives and more flamethrowers than would be good for anyone...
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59 of 65 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great way to see a great film., 16 Jan. 2009
By 
A. Davis (London, UK) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
I have been a huge fan of this film since I first saw it in the eighties.
And as much as I enjoyed the VHS I used to own with all its imperfections, scratches and grain this is the way to see the film.

I have been a fan on most of John Carpenters films, and throw in Kurt Russell and I reckon I'm in for a good film. This film delivers by the bucket load, the effects still stand up pretty well and the excellent cast deliver some equally excelent performances.

As mentioned above I enjoyed the film when I saw it on a well worn rented VHS, I then enjoyed it more on the new VHS I later bought and then loved it on DVD. And to be honest I thought that was as good as it gets, how wrong was I!
The Blu-ray disc delivers unsurpassed quality with detail showing up that was just not visible on DVD, ok I'll admit that in a few of the helicopter shots you can see a bit of grain/imperfection but those times are minimal.
The detail seen in shots such as when MacCready is in the dark holding a flare is superb.
I would even go as far as to say that this copy makes the film look bang up to date and its hard to believe its been around so long.

I would recommend that any fan of this film rush out to buy a Blu-ray player so they can eperience the best ever version!
And any sci-fi fans or even horror fans who have never seen this film then give it a go, I think you'll like it.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This things conned me again., 4 April 2013
By 
Barry (Stoke-on-Trent. Staffordshire) - See all my reviews
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5 stars for this film , but I already had this teamed up with the remake ,which I bought from Amazon when the price was £7-87 on the 8th Oct 2012 , after reading the reviews I noted one reviewer says 200 minutes ,and Amazon lists 200 mins ,I paid
£9-75 in the Easter sale ,only to open the steel tin ,and find that you have the identical Blu-ray disc in the stand alone plastic box edition ,in a nutshell I have paid £9-75 for a steel box, and it doesn't say 100th Anniversary Edition anywhere on the box ,and I did the same with American Werewolf in London ,bought that in the Steel box edition ,and its the same disc that I have in the copy I bought from H.M.V.
a few years back ,still this is a cracking film ,and now I own this Thing in five editions
'Steelbook' standard plastic edition ' John Carpenter box set DVD)two disc edition DVD ,and U.S Edition DVD ,There's mention of this 200 mins Edition ,(I WONDER??)
This release for 2013 ,is packaging only ,you would think ,they would give you a collectors booklet or cards ,but no you will do what I did ,and think ,WOW! longer edition?? or something new ,like another reviewer says ,even the artwork isn't from the film ,at least you get the same picture on the reverse of the tin .
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars My Favourite Horror Movie & One Of The Best SciFi Horror Films Ever Made., 4 Oct. 2013
By 
Timelord-007 (The Eccentric Wanderer) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
WARNING THIS REVIEW CONTAINS SPOILERS.

Positive.
So so many, Kurt Russell & John Carpenter really deliver the acting & directing in this movie.
The plot is exellent, Nailbiting, Gripping & tense.
The Blood scene I'll say no more just watch it.

Negative.
None whatsoever it's a cult Classic.

Trivia.
This was a flop at the box office as everybody went E.T crazy in 1982 but has since become a cult classic on video & now on dvd & Blu-ray.
John Carpenter shot additional scenes of Macready being rescued & blood tested the audience finds out he is human & another scene featuring a dog running in the snow then turning to the camera hinting The Thing had survived was also shot but never made the final cut.

Review.
This movie has earned the status of a cult classic.

Why???, Because John Carpenter directed this a SciFi horror masterpiece that is near to perfection a horror film can be.

The Creepy music by composer Ennio Morricone to the pre-title Alien spaceship to John Carpenters The Thing credits appearing set's this movie up, You just know this movie's going to deliver.

In Antarctica a Russian helicopter is seen shooting at a dog soon the dog nears the Antarctic US research base a led by Kurt Russell's Macready.

When the helicopter lands one of Macredys men intevines & shoots the Russian guy dead fearing the groups safety maybe at risk.

The dog survives & is taken in to the Antarctic base eventually being locked up with the other dogs.

But this isn't a dog it is in fact a Shape shifting Alien creature that's laid dormant in the snow but was found by a Russian research team were it broke free from the ice to now kill & infect you as you will become part of the creature.

From the first tense scene were the dog mutates into the creature this film becomes 104 minutes of nerve shredding tension.

Everybody soon gets to know what there dealing with & that it is not from this earth it is infact a Alien creature that wants to mutate with any person it comes into contact with infecting them with its DNA causing you to mutate with the creature becoming the creature.

The key to this film is that everybodys is becoming paranoid of one another, Nobody trusts anybody & slowly Macreadys men start being killed off or infected by the creature becoming it.

The blood scene delivers real genuine scares as we find out who's infected, Nothing in any film since as topped this scene for full blown nerve shredding tension.

This sequence is superbly acted by all the cast & directed masterfully by John Carpenter.

Eventually Macready rigs the base to explode killing the Alien creature but at a cost he will die of hypothermia in the freezing temperatures of Antarctica.

The final act is ambiguous as we find that only two survive Childs & Macready but is one of these men the Thing or is this just a tease by Carpenter?, Many fan's have debated this ending each coming to a different conclusion.

Praise must also go to Rob Bottin who's outstanding stomach churning special make up effects contribute to the movies success.

This is Kurt Russell's best movie & he excels in this part of Macready who has pull it together in a fight for survival not knowing who of his men to trust.

Wilford Brimley does well as Blair who may or may not be all he seems to be.

I wont spoil who is infected but it's safe to say the blood test scene soon sorts out that conundrum spectacularly.

Superbly Directed by Halloween, The Fog, Escape From New York director John Carpenter who here directs his best work who was never able to top this movie with anything else he directed before or after this movie's release.

Final thoughts are that this is a cult classic & should be purchased immediately.
One of the best SciFi movies I've ever seen.

Highly recommended DVD.

The disc includes a commentary by star Kurt Russell & director John Carpenter.
A 80 minute documentary featuring the cast,Russell,Carpenter & special effects whizz Rob Bottin, trailer & outtakes & storyboards

Timelord Rating.
9/10
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Over 25 Years Old BUT this Classic Sci-Fi Horror Still Packs a Punch - ESPECIALLY with this Excellent Blu-ray, 31 Dec. 2011
This is a relatively new-issue on Blu-ray, so don't get it mixed up with a more recent film of the same name - this John Carpenter production dates back to 1982 and is a remake of the 1951 original 'The Thing from Another World', whereas the latest offering is actually a 'prequel' to both !

Now to the essentials. I think that this is, by some distance, the best John Carpenter horror film (yes, even allowing for 'Halloween') and one of the best horrors of all-time; despite having watched it many times it still manages to scare the proverbials off me - it is still not unknown for me to slowly raise a spread hand to my face in a pathetic attempt to shield my eyes, especially as I now know precisely when all the 'shocks' are due.....! The film title might be bland, but the content is not and this Blu-ray release really brings the picture (if not the audio, quite) up to modern standards and the best the movie has ever looked.

If you've not seen 'The Thing' before DO NOT read the Amazon synopsis as I think it gives too much away, even the short description on the back of the Blu-ray box reveals too much. The less you know, the more the essential basis of the plot means despite the prominent aspect really being the scares and special-effects.

All I'll say here is that you must watch from the opening credits, as even they start the very grim 'story' ball-rolling, but the real action rapidly progresses after a caption informs us that the location is Antarctica in 1982. The action then starts with a seemingly innocuous long distance shot of a helicopter flying over the snowy crags, but then the flavour changes somewhat as rifle shots ring out from the aircraft as it is hunts something on the ground. What follows is a fast-changing situation at a nearby United States National Science Institution Station as the staff there not only try to figure out the background to what is afflicting their locale but also deal with 'The Thing' wreaking havoc, confusion and slaughter; since we know so little about the residents you really concentrate on how various characters fight for survival, reach their demise and how 'The Thing' maintains its presence.....

If you want some more detail and reasoning why this film is rated '18', I've pasted the BBFC classification information below the dashed lines at the base of my review - IT CONTAINS SPOILERS.

The only accompaniment to events is a largely repetitive but spooky synthesiser-based musical soundtrack (I use the term musical lightly), which is essentially a 'pulse' style composition which couldn't have tested the composing skills of the renowned score-writer Ennio Morricone much at all but it does nonetheless serve the film perfectly. Everything is tense, spooky and VERY grim - don't watch this film while eating your dinner !

If you've already seen this movie on DVD you are still in for a treat as the improvement in presentation courtesy of an HD transfer on Blu-ray is excellent and significantly better than what you will have experienced before, less so with the later Collectors Edition agreed - but certainly still better. Everything is sharp, bright and well-detailed.

Don't believe me ? - Then look at some screen caps in a comparison review via the Internet link I've included in my Amazon discussion Post dated 31 Dec 11 entitled 'Blu-ray vs DVD Comparison Screencaps', noting that the review only gives the disc specification for the inferior US release....

The audio improvement is less auspicious. Despite being of the DTS-HD Master Audio variety it may be lively, but is on occasion a bit muffled and/or muted - especially when there is more 'going on' such as expositions etc; it is perfectly acceptable, but certainly not as good an improvement as the picture is from previous formats.

The other good news is that all the extras from the DVD are carried over (you can see what they are in a photo of the box back someone has added to the Amazon page for this Blu-ray); an obvious move perhaps but as the US Blu-ray omits a lot of them it is pertinent. The main featurette is also viewable as excerpts when the in-film picture-in-picture 'U-Control' feature is used.

So, if you 'like' your horror and prefer it to contain graphic gore as well as the standard shocks/tension then, despite being over 25 years old, 'John Carpenter's The Thing' will be right up your street. If you're already familiar with it but only via DVD, then this Blu-ray should rightly tempt you. The horror is extreme and the story very grim - marvellous !

--------------------------

SPOILER ALERT

BBFC - Extended Classification Information

THE THING is a 1982 John Carpenter science fiction horror film about an alien force that threatens a group scientists. The film was classified '18' for 'strong violence and gory horror'.

The film includes scenes of strong violence and gory horror, involving deformed and mutating dogs and human characters. The shape-shifting nature of the alien in the film is depicted through shots of bleeding heads, an alien head exploding out of a stomach, a head turning into a spider and similar images of grotesque horror. These images are suitable at '18', as they are the strongest kind of gory images and the film presents a chilling and genuinely suspenseful treatment of the alien threat.

The film also contains infrequent strong language, which is acceptable at the recommended '18' classification.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Well, it's certainly SOME thing, 30 Oct. 2011
By 
Inspector Gadget "Go Go Gadget Reviews" (On the trail of Doctor Claw) - See all my reviews
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"You'll never, ever, see anything like The Thing again."
-John Carpenter, 1997.

He's absolutely right. No one would have the nerve to make a film as disgusting as this in the current "let's not offend anybody at all, ever" climate. Without a single frame of CGI, the Thing shoves our faces right into Rob Bottin's gruesome make-up effects and proves that genuine, tangible prosthetics and monsters are a million times scarier than a cheap, obvious effect done on a computer in post-production.

I don't understand why people keep referring to this as a remake. It's far, far removed from Howard Hawks' version. Even Carpenter himself, a Hawks admirer, says that The Thing is it's own movie, and much closer to the original novella 'Who Goes There' by John W. Campbell Jnr.

Set in the lonely Antarctic, The Thing takes the form of a wolf and bounds across the snowscapes to a US research station, pursued by frantic, half-mad Norwegians. Unable to communicate with the English-speaking American team they end up dead before being to warn them that the cuddly dog is actually a hideous shape-shifting monster. The team eventually discover the wreck of an alien spaceship that has been entombed in the ice for at least 100, 000 years before the monster begins to wreak havoc at the research station, intent on consuming all of the humans and making it to civilization where it can take over the entire planet.

Fear and paranoia grow among the team as they desperately try to prove who is biologically human and who has been assimilated by The Thing. It's utterly horrific stuff, but it's not without its illogical moments and massive plot holes. The universal adoration of The Thing seems to forget that it doesn't make complete sense. Carpenter admits he lost track of who is and who isn't, which seems kinda lazy. Ambiguity can be a cheap way of maintaining uncertainty and Carpenter should have delivered a more focused and precise plot. Plus the paranoia was way overdone. By the halfway mark I reckon the fear among the men should have been merely implicit rather than verbally delivered at every opportunity.

It's rather strange, and fitting, that this movie also comes across as a big-screen adaptation of HP Lovecraft's 'At the Mountains of Madness', which also features research scientists in Antarctica discovering an ancient shape-shifting lifeform and losing their sanity.

Despite the problems, this is Carpenter's direction at its best, with long, slow, tracking cameras in gorgeous anamorphic Panavision, evocative lighting, and lonely minimalism. Even Ennio Morricone's score is very much restrained. The cast have their defining features mostly hidden beneath thick facial hair, but Kurt Russell once again proves why he is Carpenter's favorite lead, and the awesome Keith David provides plenty of badassness just with his mere presence.

The Blu Ray is in lovely 2.40:1 1080p with DTS HD-MA sound. Plenty of extras, and that weird U-Control 'thing' are also included.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars For once a European Universal Blu-ray disc that's better than the US release, 7 Dec. 2012
By 
Trevor Willsmer (London, England) - See all my reviews
(HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)    (TOP 50 REVIEWER)   
John Carpenter's remake of the Thing From Another world was a significant box-office underachiever when it was released in 1982 but found a new lease of life on home video and has proved a perennial ever since, going from panned-and-scanned video to letterboxed laserdisc special edition to DVD and now Blu-ray secure in the knowledge that its fans would upgrade to each new format. There's nothing new here that wasn't on the exhaustive laser disc special edition or the DVD, and the improvement in picture quality from DVD, though noticeable, isn't huge, but the region-free European release is a considerable improvement over Universal's US release. Where that only offered the feature-length 84-minute making of documentary Terror Takes Shape as a picture-in-picture feature, the European disc allows you to watch it separately in fullframe as it was meant to be seen. It's also got nearly all the extras from the previous special editions - out-takes, stills, storyboard, production design and conceptual art galleries and original theatrical trailer - with only the extensive production notes failing to make the transition. Added to that, it's still a terrific bit of sci-fi horror even if it is a shame that its success has overshadowed Howard Hawks' terrific original version.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars THE The Thing. (Not the new the thing.), 20 Jan. 2012
Yeah - call me an adult, but this is the joint best sf horror movie ever made - along with Alien.

Rob Bottin's gloopy horror FX - set a benchmark which no one has ever even managed to come close to!

Exceptionally good script from Bill Lancaster, and John Carpenter used his Hitchcockian style to perfection here.

Everything is scary - The setting, the music (by Ennio Morricone - channeling thru Carpenter natch) the monster, the paranoia, the makeup FX, the sound FX, the movie is nearly flawless.

Unlike sadly the prequel - which, given the source material on a plate, plot points galore to follow, atmospheric music to die for, opts to be the most pathetic continuity fail ever - by dissing this BFI recognised masterpiece and replacing it with comedic cartoon CGI that is absolutely LAUGH OUT LOUD funny instead of scary and a teen female scream queen american heroine to cary the plot.... well... DERP.

THE THING - By John Carpenter - based on Who Goes There - by J W Campbell - Not the original - But still the best.

(The Howard Hawks 50's movie production of it - ostensibly directed by Christian Nyby - is also excellent but without the shape changing.)
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Thing In High-Def!!!, 22 Nov. 2011
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Im fairly new to blu ray, but the thing being one of my favourite horror movies i just had to get it.
Seen it countless times on tv, vhs, and dvd, but nothing could have prepared me for this. The quality of the transfer has to be the best i have seen in blu ray so far. both sound and visual get top marks.
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The Thing [HD DVD] [1982] [US Import]
The Thing [HD DVD] [1982] [US Import] by John Carpenter (HD DVD - 2006)
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