Happy Halloween! This is the time of year when people celebrate the supernatural and ghoulish aspects of popular culture and national myths. I do my part by highlighting horror movies on Halloween night. So far I have reviewed Nightmare Detective, Strange Circus, Shokuzai, POV: A Cursed Film Charisma, Don’t Look Up, Snow Woman (2017) Snow Woman (1968) Fate/Stay Night Heaven’s Feel, and Gemini. I’ll be departing from Japan and heading to Antarctica for the next Halloween Review!
Release Date: June 25th, 1982
Duration: 109 mins.
Director: John Carpenter
Writer: Bill Lancaster (Screenplay), John W. Campbell Jr. (Who Goes There?)
Starring: Kurt Russell (R.J. MacReady), A. Wilford Brimley (Blair), T.K. Carter (Nauls), David Clennon (Palmer), Keith David (Childs), Richard Dysart (Dr. Copper), Charles Hallahan (Norris), Peter Maloney (George Bennings), Richard Masur (Clark), Donald Moffat (Garry), Joel Polis (Fuchs), Thomas Waites (Windows),
Given the cold shoulder by some big name critics and receiving a lukewarm box-office return from the general public, it is fair to say that John Carpenter’s arctic-set paranoia-fuelled alien killer chiller THE THING was misunderstood at its time of release. Now widely considered a classic, Carpenter’s cold vision of a film has become a sci-fi horror ur-text that has inspired countless filmmakers, creatives, and fans through its adaptation of an influential short story with genre-defining prosthetics, special effects, and great acting for the maximum of horror atmospherics.
The story takes place in the winter of 1982 where a 12-man expedition at a remote research base in Antarctica encounter a shape-shifting alien that has lain frozen in the snowy wastes for over 100,000 years. Thawed out, this parasitic creature proceeds to assimilate and imitate members of the group which causes paranoia and fear to mount as nobody is sure who has been consumed and is now imitated by… the Thing. Bloody body-horror ensues as the men try to isolate and destroy it.