An alien microorganism awakens in the Antarctic, and begins assimilating the staff of an isolated research station.
No question, this is my favorite John Carpenter film. The Thing vibrates with no-bullshit energy, setting about its business immediately and never flinches from its horror. Though the setup isn't much different from your average Body Snatcher, the incredible gore and monster effects bring a thick, tangible presence to the evil at play. There's a well-worn chumminess among the cast, which gives the inevitable deaths some oomph; and if the ending setpieces lack some of the brutal tension of the mid-film locked-room procedural, well, hell, I don't think there's enough snow in horror movies, so they get a pass. The Thing can't help but satisfy.
CAST + CREW
Director: John Carpenter (In the Mouth of Madness,
Prince of Darkness, Memoirs of an Invisible Man)
Cast: Kurt Russell (Breakdown, Death Proof, Bone Tomahawk)
Keith David (They Live, Pitch Black, The Quick and the Dead)
T. K. Carter (Southern Comfort, Baadasssss!, Domino)
Wilford Brimley (Progeny, Remo Williams: The Adventure Begins)
CONTENT (spoilered; highlight for warnings)
violence against animals, possession, suicide
CAREER STATS [on a scale from 1 (least) to 10 (most)]
The actors play off each other and the plot is a blast.
Creeping dread that explodes in a shower of viscera.
Hitchcockian Clouzotesque; pure breathless tension.
More intense than most films of its ilk, but undeniable.
They Live, The Shining, Ravenous, The Thing from Another World