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Watch The Thing - Alternative Versions.
In 1982 John Carpenter released his groundbreaking sci-fi horror
masterpiece, The Thing. It involved a group of scientists in Antarctica
who must divert from their research to deal with a mysterious creature
that has infiltrated their research center. It's a creature that kills
off people and then copies them perfectly so as to blend in with
everyone else before they attack again. The creature came from another
research camp located miles from their own, a desolate and abandoned
Norwegian camp. What exactly happened in that doomed research facility
has long been a mystery. All we know is that it was a disaster and it
where the entire problem began. 2011's The Thing attempts to resolve
that mystery by telling the back story of the events which led up to
John Carpenter's film. However, in its attempt to fill the gaps and
resolve the ambiguities this version of The Thing, to put it bluntly,
does a very poor job.
The Thing is technically a prequel, however, it is in many ways just a
remake of the 1982 version. It follows the same basic storyline of
researchers in Antarctica finding an alien and then being terrorized by
said alien. Because of this, we know exactly how The Thing is going to
unfold. It's not the film's fault, it's just a simple fact. This puts a
major obligation on the shoulders of the film to be highly imaginative
and original in its own way. Sadly, The Thing does not do this. It
falls short of being a truly inspired retelling of the classic tale and
it really gets to be nothing more than a straightforward horror story,
and I use the term horror loosely. This version of The Thing possesses
none of the raw terror that Carpenter's version elicits. It doesn't
capture that same level of visceral suspense that leaves us on the edge
of our seat every waking minute of the film. This version is congested
with cheap jump scares and gross out moments that sicken more than
frighten. What Carpenter did in 1982 just couldn't translate over to
this new rendition as it disregards everything that makes the original
The Thing such a masterpiece.
I really try to judge films based on themselves alone. I try not to
critique films based on other films as I feel like every film deserves
to be judged individually. But when you have a film that is more or
less purposely identical to its predecessor there's no other way to do
it. As is the case with The Thing. I have to compare every element of
this new version with the 1982 version and it clearly highlights all
the flaws with this new version.
However, the one region where I thought the 2011 version could really
surpass the original would be in the visual effects department. And oh
how wrong I was. The creature design in The Thing is excellent, I can
give it that. There are some very well designed monsters.
Unfortunately, it is the CGI renderings of these wicked monsters that
lets the design down. There is just something about the CGI in this
film that just simply isn't good. It looks fake, it looks cheap, and it
looks sloppy. If anything, it makes me appreciate the stop motion
effects of the 1982 version so much more. I still have vivid images of
the disgusting creatures from the 1982 The Thing, but I'm sure I will
quickly forget the underwhelming designs of this new version.
It's sad to see a prequel to one of the greatest films of the 80's go
down in flames. Overall, as a film on its own, The Thing isn't
terrible, but it isn't very good either. It didn't amaze me and it
didn't do any of the things that a good horror film should. But when
you compare it to the 1982 version it is a very bad film. It simply
gets everything wrong that Carpenter's version got oh so right.
Watching The Thing doesn't make you sick to your stomach its so bad,
but it severely underwhelms you and has nowhere near the same affect as
Carpenter's immaculate version. 2011's version of The Thing won't be
remembered and people certainly won't be talking about it 20 years down
the line. That role is reserved for John Carpenter's 1982 masterpiece.
Tags for The Thing Full Movie
Eric Christian Olsen
, Joel Edgerton
, Mary Elizabeth Winstead
, Ulrich Thomsen
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