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John's Horror Banana-nanza Episode Fifty-Six : The Thing
John Carpenter's remake is yet another example of a remake outshining the original. While every critic in the world thinks "The Thing From Another World" is a better film, it doesn't come close to the claustrophobic atmosphere and the sheer horrific gross out factor of f Carpenter's film. Of the two, "The Thing" is more pure horror.
So a group of scientists in the Antarctic are just kind of doing their everyday thing, which is nothing, until a helicopter shows up and starts shooting at a dog. One of the scientists is hit, and the guy in the helicopter is killed. Confused, some of the scientists visit the camp the pilot came from, while the dog is put with the others.
In the camp they find a burned body of something that doesn't appear human, but turns out to be. They also find a video of the camp digging a ship out of the ice. So on a return trip, they find a rectangular hole in the ice which appears to be where there was once a body.
The dog then tries to latch onto other dogs, and its face explodes apart. Well, what we have here is a shapeshifting alien who can't quite stay stable for some reason. And this is a cause for concern, as anything it touches, it can replicate. So whoever had contact with the dog could be an alien.
This makes Wilford Brimley's diabetes reach uncontrollable levels, and he starts smashing things in a paranoid rage. Luckily, Kurt Russell is on break from the Roadhouse bar and punches Brimley's character Blair in the face, then locks him outside.
Slowly, the situation deteriorates even more. One character's stomach turns into a human arm venus fly trap, then his head detaches and grows legs and antennas. Which had me laughing on the floor. The effects in this movie are outstanding. In fact, they're the highlight of the film. But the nice thing is, they don't overshadow the plot. Everything is tight, and you honestly are left guessing who the alien is at any moment.
Kurt Russell is incredible in this movie as well. So, yes, I recommend it. Just as an aside, if you're going to watch the new "The Thing" from 2011, watch it first. It's a prequel to this movie, and isn't too bad. As far as this and the original "Thing From Another World" , those are two very different movies. But both are worth watching.