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John Carpenter's The Thing
#1
The gore work in this film is still amazing and shocking to behold even today, courtesy of the ambitious Rob Bottin. I love the fact that The Thing isn't represented by only a single being. It just makes the paranoia of the unknown that much more potent and effective.

Even though THE THING was Carpenter's first stab at studio filmmaking, it successfully retains the raw and gritty approach he used in films like HALLOWEEN. I don't think the film is as scary as that particular film, but THE THING is an impressive slice of visceral sci-fi horror. It will get a reaction out of you no matter what.

Love the score by Ennio Morricone and cinematography of Dean Cundey, who made Antarctica look like a barren wasteland of disease and hardship on its own.
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#2
Best movie ever. Would love to elaborate but this sleeping pill is kickin in hard core all of a sudden.
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#3
I also like that he ends the film on a tense note, as it is ambiguous as to whether or not Keith David is infected. Is Bottin still employed, because he did some good stuff on the howling and fight club. Has anyone played the game that came back a few years ago? what the story on that one?
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#4
Never heard of it. What is this Thing?
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#5
I'll probably catch flack for preferring what Carpenter did with THEY LIVE, ASSAULT, and EFNY but that doesn't mean I don't appreciate what he pulled off with THE THING. The gore is harsh but what makes the carnage so effective is a great group of actors that pull you into the story. That element is what often seems to be missing from the countless ALIEN/THING rip-offs.
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#6
THE THING is one of those that I had somehow managed to go into completely clean. I hadn't heard anything about it, was just intrigued by the blurb on the back of the case - so I rented it.

It blew me the fuck away. The dog bit, the blood test, the whole claustrophobic paranoid last half...it may be just because it caught me off guard but I love this movie so fucking much. And that's about all I can say without getting into masturbatory territory.
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#7
Quote:

Originally Posted by Moltisanti

I'll probably catch flack for preferring what Carpenter did with THEY LIVE, ASSAULT, and EFNY but that doesn't mean I don't appreciate what he pulled off with THE THING. The gore is harsh but what makes the carnage so effective is a great group of actors that pull you into the story. That element is what often seems to be missing from the countless ALIEN/THING rip-offs.

You cowardly motherfucker!


Just kidding. I totally agree, Kurt and David Keith are the ones the sell this shit. Actually, the dog is an outstanding performer too. Carp mentions this on the commentary track how the trainer told the told something once and he did it.
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#8
Quote:

Originally Posted by El Thain

Has anyone played the game that came back a few years ago? what the story on that one?

The game picks up where the movie left off: you play the leader of a rescue team that arrives at Outpost 31 and tries to figure out what happened. There are lots of references to the movie and you can issue orders to a squad (medic, soldier, engineer, etc.), who can become frightened and grossed out by the strange creatures that keep attacking.

Characters also have "trust" levels that rise and fall depending on how well you perform during creature attacks (you can get them to trust you by giving them a gun, for example). You can perform blood tests on them too to see if they're really Things, but it doesn't work that well because characters transform into Things at pre-determined points no matter what you do, even if they passed a blood test 10 seconds earlier.

One good bit that you don't see too often in other games is that you can freeze to death in The Thing if you stay outside too long, so you're constantly looking for places to duck into to warm up before you start freezing.

The game has its moments and is fairly atmospheric and suspenseful at times, but I couldn't really get into it (they throw in a big conspiracy too, that doesn't really belong). The PC version is also a very obvious console port; you can tell by the way the controls and interface work (the game didn't even have a mouselook option until they patched it in).

Since it's probably really cheap now, it's worth checking out if you were a fan of the movie.
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#9
According to IMDB (http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0001964/), the last two films Bottin worked on were CHARLIE'S ANGELS and MR. DEEDS. What a waste of incredible talent.
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#10
Since his tireless work on The Thing ended up hospitalizing him, he's probably okay with taking less taxing gigs these days.
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#11
Absolutely in love with this movie- think every aspect of it is perfect. I'm still amazed at how well the effects hold up.

In fact, it was the basis for my first tattoo-



It always was something I was freaked out about- the concept of not knowing the people around you.

The game I wasn't a huge fan of. It was cool that it tried to continue the story (frozen Mcready!) but the controls were busted- as was the fact that people would turn into the thing no matter how well you took care of them. Cool concept, though.
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#12
My favorite horror film of all time, and one of my top ten films. I still wince when the dogs get killed and when they slice their thumbs for the blood test. The only sour note is that the final appearance by the alien is somewhat underwhelming compared to some of the brilliant forms it took throughout the film, but I can easily live with that.
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#13
Alex, did that tat land you the CC gig? I know Nick's a big fan. Hehehe. Either way, that is a cool tattoo.
You're right about the controls for that game too, they fucked it for me. I knew a lot of non Thing fans who loved the game, but I just couldn't get into it.
Quote:

Originally Posted by IndianSummerSky

Love the score by Ennio Morricone and cinematography of Dean Cundey, who made Antarctica look like a barren wasteland of disease and hardship on its own.

I've loved the film for years and years, but only recently realized he was behind the score(don't ask me why). It's so minimilist it hurts. But it doesn't hurt the film, it totally works, it's just that there's nothing to it.
Quote:

Originally Posted by IndianSummerSky

According to IMDB (http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0001964/), the last two films Bottin worked on were CHARLIE'S ANGELS and MR. DEEDS. What a waste of incredible talent.

I haven't seen Mr. Deeds(nor do I plan on it), but I can't even imagine what either of those films needed him for. I'm surprised someone like Tarantino or Rodriguez hasn't used his talents recently. The guy really is amazing, even if it seems like he's just a big goofy geek(from the Thing doc, at least)

This is my favorite horror film. The Shining is a not so distant second though.
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#14
Quote:

Originally Posted by Alex Riviello

The game I wasn't a huge fan of. It was cool that it tried to continue the story (frozen Mcready!) but the controls were busted- as was the fact that people would turn into the thing no matter how well you took care of them. Cool concept, though.

Guess you never played the game to the end, because part of the above is factually incorrect.
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#15
I couldn't get to the end of the game. It gets really boring, really quickly. As movie-to-game translations go, it was pretty good, but that's not exactly a high endorsement.

As for the film itself, it's one of my all-time favorites. The fact that half of the horror comes not from the monster, but from not knowing who you can trust, or who's even human, makes it a really great combination of horror and character study. And that's not even mentioning spectacular practical effects that still hold up to this day. Definitely a modern classic of the horror/sci-fi genre.
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#16
Best poster/tag line/last-line-of-a-movie all rolled into one?
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#17
Is there an anamorphic DVD release of this? The disc I have is pretty stacked with features, but no anamorphic transfer...
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#18
Yep- that recent "Collector's Edition" (last one was a Collector's Edition too) is anamorphic- I believe all the other features are the same though. I had to buy the new one after my friend gave my old copy to a drug dealer who wouldn't return it.

Graham- maybe I didn't! What happened at the end? I can't remember it now...
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#19
Yes, there was a re-release maybe a year back. It's the one that replaces the classic cover with the ugly face peeking from the ice:

http://images.amazon.com/images/P/B0...1.LZZZZZZZ.jpg

EDIT: Beaten by Alex.

As for the film, it's a cage match between The Thing, Jaws and Apocalypse Now for my favorite film ever made. As a kid I literally wore out my dad's old VHS copy of the film and the DVD is probably my most viewed one. Just an absolute blast from start to finish. Halloween will always be the film Carpenter will be best remembered for, but The Thing is his finest piece of work.
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#20
That cover is actually a slipcase- it's clear, with the blue icy stuff on it. You pull it off and it's like you've thawed the creature. Kinda nifty. Not worth a double dip though probably, unless you need that anamorphic. Or your last one got thiefed by a drug dealer.
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#21
Quote:

Originally Posted by Alex Riviello

That cover is actually a slipcase- it's clear, with the blue icy stuff on it. You pull it off and it's like you've thawed the creature. Kinda nifty. Not worth a double dip though probably, unless you need that anamorphic. Or your last one got thiefed by a drug dealer.

Thanks, guys. A lot. This is one of my all time faves and I just gotta have the anamorphic.
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#22
Quote:

Originally Posted by Brad Millette

I couldn't get to the end of the game. It gets really boring, really quickly. As movie-to-game translations go, it was pretty good, but that's not exactly a high endorsement.

.

True, it was a struggle, but it's "almost" worth it for SPOILER:

MacReady helping you fight the final boss...OK, he's just flying the helicopter, but I guess the game's designers were hoping for yet another installment...I agree totally with what everyone has said about this game; the potential was there, yet the ball was seriously dropped...pity.
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#23
I love this film. It's probably my fave Carpenter film, just slightly ahead of Big Trouble In Little China.
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#24
Fuckin' A.

That is all.
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#25
This is one of those movies I can watch over and over and over again and it only increases my appreciation of it.

My girlfriend likes it too.
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#26
Fuckin' A indeed.

This is a fantastic movie that holds a permanent spot on my personal all-time top 10.
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#27
Judging by the small sample in this thread, this film could be the most well-liked in CHUD land. I was skimming some of the lists in the "Your Top Ten Films...EVER" thread, and THE THING probably popped up the most.
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#28
I remember renting this out when I was first getting into movies and watching it with a few friends late at night. When the dog's face ripped apart, my buddies and I let out a collective "HOLY FUCK!" loud enought to rouse my parents from their sleep. Good times.

Easily my favorite horror movie.
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#29
Quote:

Originally Posted by IndianSummerSky

Judging by the small sample in this thread, this film could be the most well-liked in CHUD land. I was skimming some of the lists in the "Your Top Ten Films...EVER" thread, and THE THING probably popped up the most.

I think you're right.
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#30
I love how the film ends: Russell and David make peace as the flames burn down the entire camp.
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#31
Really is a great movie, I think I'm going to go watch it right now.
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#32
I love this movie to pieces, but then I love pretty much everything Carpenter did from the late 70s to the early 80s. The Thing is probably his best-made film. The direction, acting, perfect Morricone score, and Bottin's best FX (which says something) really elevate it to another level. Alas, my heart will always belong to Escape from New York.
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#33
Quote:

Originally Posted by Patrick Ripoll

My girlfriend likes it too.

Braggart.
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#34
Rewatched this again not too long ago and found that I enjoyed it even more than I have before. (How often does that happen?) Carpenter really nails the stir-crazy paranoia escalating in that barren setting. All that space and yet nowhere to escape. Ending it ambiguously was a master stroke, leading to speculation that continues to this day. Definitely deserving of a place with the all-time horror greats.

And that chest splitting scene remains amazingly repulsive.
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#35
One of the best. I just wanted to see more of the stop-motion BlairThing. Of course, I've got the exact same gripe with The Howling, so what can you do.
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