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Thing [Blu-ray]  [US Import]
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Rather than opting to remake a classic of yesteryear, the team behind 2011’s The Thing had other ideas. Appreciating that, in particular, John Carpenter’s exceptional 1982 horror film would still be lodged in people’s minds, the plan here was to avoid the idea of simply redoing it. Instead, for this new The Thing, the story has been set earlier, making it a prequel to the earlier film.
It’s completely standalone, too, joining a team stationed at an Antarctic outpost that soon unearths something really quite extraordinary. Turns out, given that this is a movie, it’s the kind of thing they soon wish they hadn’t uncovered, as they find themselves stuck in the middle of nowhere, facing a very deadly foe. You can probably work out what that foe may be.
It all works a lot better than you may fear, too, perhaps over-relying on CG over practical effects, but still generating jumps and tension. The DVD presentation looks stunning at its best, too, with the barren, white landscape crisply presented.
The disc also boasts an interesting commentary, featuring director Matthijs van Heijningen, which dissects the film in an accessible manner. You sense that some sizeable stories have been left untold here, but it’s well worth a listen nonetheless. The other supplements are less bountiful, although they do at one stage dig into why the project was embarked upon in the first place.
After all, the truth is that this new film of The Thing is no much for John Carpenter’s earlier remake. But it’s still a carefully crafted, respectful and surprisingly appropriate prequel. --Jon Foster --This text refers to the DVD edition.
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Top Customer Reviews
When dealing with a reboot/remake of a classic film it's usually time to run for cover, but this project instead decided to make a prequel to John Carpenter's movie. The plot is known to all of course, in Antartica an alien ship is found buried deep under ice and scientists working there from a largely Norwegian group go and discover at their own risk.... Soon all hell breaks loose as one by one each character may not be who you think they are. The Thing works because it is able to surprise us with decent suspence and keep us genuinely unsure of who will be the next victim.
It's easy to turn away in disgust when Mary ElizabeH Winstead turns up in all her glorious beauty- Carpenter's movie was female free, but the makers never go down a relationship route and Winstead firmly just becomes one of the team.
The Thing does have its problems of course. The early talkie helicopter scene is obviously a nod to the very original movie in the 1950s. It's a sad replacement, the 50s version dialogie was arguably filled with some of the richest dialogue for a horror/sci fi film at the time. Also you can feel that the film steps into remake territory with same as for scenes, although some of these are neatly spun on its head- so in the end there is no blood test etc. The effects are sadly all CGI, but they work quite well. Interestingly it's the close up shots that work the best. The Thing is pretty much a solid homage to what has gone before and fans will love the end credits so hang around!
There are a fair few negatives here. Frankly - with the exception of Ms. Winstead - the cast are largely forgettable, and lack the clear characterizations of the 1982 movie. Two reasons for this stand out - first the movie hits 'OMG WTF' territory a little too quickly, not allowing the breathing room the original had to set the scene and establish the characters. Second, once things get moving (pun intended), they don't let up - and as a result we don't get the tense character moments that the first movie had in spades. The CG is also a little shonky in places; most of the times it holds up - partly thanks to brief shots and clever use of focus - but more than once I found myself getting nostalgic for Rob Bottin's absolutely flawless work. Finally, despite a great score from Marco Beltrami, it would have been nice - and extremely ballsy - if they'd have used John Carpenter's music throughout. It DOES make an appearance in the movie, and I have to say it's quite effectively used - but I would have used it all the way.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
A really good prequel for a follow up film, thoroughly enjoyed it and well worth watching especially if you remember the first episode.Published 2 months ago by ED-SHOT
Rubbish movie with b list actors. John carpenter's version is far superior and a classic.Published 3 months ago by johnmelville
Very entertaining prequel to John Carpenters masterpiece. Good casting and great special effects. Highly recommend. Certainly a repeat watch. Monsters!!! J Counsell.Published 3 months ago by Lincoln
PREQUEL to the 1982 classic as it finished in the way the original starts guy in a helicopter chasing a dog the same susspence as the original
PREQUEL cos they dig up the... Read more