The Thing Review
Directed by John Carpenter
Starring Kurt Russell
It tells the story of an American scientific research outpost stationed in Antarctica that is unknowingly infested by a parasitic alien organism.
The Thing begins with a helicopter in hot pursuit of what is a seemingly defenseless dog, confronting the members of the American scientific research team.
The invading Norwegian research team are killed through a failed toss of a grenade and a bullet to the head, leaving the dog alive.
The dog is let into the scientific research outpost, which turns out to be the worst possible decision any of those men can make.
Paranoia and suspicion overcome the members of the scientific research team when they learn of the parasitic alien organism, which mutates and imitates whatever it comes into contact with. Who can be trusted when the alien organism can assimilate with any member of the research team?
The Thing introduces the character of R.J. MacReady, an alcohol-swilling, chess-playing helicopter pilot, played by Kurt Russell.
He is the main protagonist of the film, taking the reins of leadership when everyone loses their heads with suspicion and mistrust.
Flamethrower on his back and explosives strapped to his chest, MacReady knows that the only way to keep the infectious alien from spreading is to burn everything, leaving nothing to survive.
He leads the surviving men, trying to keep it together under strange circumstances and life-threatening events. The Thing is not about survival, it is about sacrifice for greater good.
The members of the scientific research team, which is slim to none after being infiltrated by the parasitic alien, realizes that their survival is not an option. With nothing to lose, they destroy the outpost with fire and explosives.
There is something about older special effects and makeup in films that downright disturbs me or more accurately gives me the heebeejeebees.
It seems that the more realistic the special effects become, the less I am affected by them.
But the special effects and makeup in The Thing fall in the category of disturbing in my eyes; they made me squirm, especially when that man’s head sprouted those spidery legs.
Though, the reasons behind my disgust may stem from my fear of spiders. The parasitic alien organism is resilient, fighting for survival.
The Thing is actually a remake of The Thing from Another World, retelling the 1951 film. The ending of The Thing was a bit lacking to me, but the entire film was enveloped in paranoia and mistrust. In the end, MacReady is one of the last survivors of the research team, but even he knows that survival is not an option for him.