MOVIEmeter
Top 5000
Up 65 this week

The Thing (1982)

 -  Horror | Mystery | Sci-Fi  -  25 June 1982 (USA)
8.2
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 8.2/10 from 190,488 users  
Reviews: 849 user | 210 critic

Scientists in the Antarctic are confronted by a shape-shifting alien that assumes the appearance of the people that it kills.

Director:

Writers:

(screenplay), (story)
0Check in
0Share...

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 25 titles
created 14 Jan 2012
 
a list of 30 titles
created 04 Sep 2012
 
a list of 29 titles
created 4 months ago
 
a list of 25 titles
created 2 weeks ago
 
a list of 25 titles
created 5 days ago
 

Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: The Thing (1982)

The Thing (1982) on IMDb 8.2/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of The Thing.

User Polls

Top 250 #162 | 3 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

The Thing I (2011)
Horror | Mystery | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

At an Antarctica research site, the discovery of an alien craft leads to a confrontation between graduate student Kate Lloyd and scientist Dr. Sander Halvorson.

Director: Matthijs van Heijningen Jr.
Stars: Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Joel Edgerton, Ulrich Thomsen
The Shining (1980)
Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  

A family heads to an isolated hotel for the winter where an evil and spiritual presence influences the father into violence, while his psychic son sees horrific forebodings from the past and of the future.

Director: Stanley Kubrick
Stars: Jack Nicholson, Shelley Duvall, Danny Lloyd
Mystery | Sci-Fi | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

In a future world devastated by disease, a convict is sent back in time to gather information about the man-made virus that wiped out most of the human population on the planet.

Director: Terry Gilliam
Stars: Bruce Willis, Madeleine Stowe, Brad Pitt
Cube (1997)
Mystery | Sci-Fi | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

7 complete strangers of widely varying personality characteristics are involuntarily placed in an endless kafkaesque maze containing deadly traps.

Director: Vincenzo Natali
Stars: Nicole de Boer, Maurice Dean Wint, David Hewlett
The Faculty (1998)
Horror | Mystery | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

Students suspect that their teachers are aliens after bizarre occurances.

Director: Robert Rodriguez
Stars: Jordana Brewster, Clea DuVall, Laura Harris
Sci-Fi | Horror | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

A teenage girl and her father discover alien clones are replacing humans on a remote U.S. military base in Alabama.

Director: Abel Ferrara
Stars: Gabrielle Anwar, Meg Tilly, Terry Kinney
Horror | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

An English anthropologist has discovered a frozen monster in the frozen wastes of Manchuria which he believes may be the Missing Link. He brings the creature back to Europe aboard a ... See full summary »

Director: Eugenio Martín
Stars: Christopher Lee, Peter Cushing, Alberto de Mendoza
Mystery | Sci-Fi | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  

Eight strangers awaken with no memory and find themselves in a puzzling cube shaped room where the laws of physics do not always apply.

Director: Andrzej Sekula
Stars: Kari Matchett, Geraint Wyn Davies, Grace Lynn Kung
Horror | Sci-Fi | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

Four weeks after a mysterious, incurable virus spreads throughout the UK, a handful of survivors try to find sanctuary.

Director: Danny Boyle
Stars: Cillian Murphy, Naomie Harris, Christopher Eccleston
Horror | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

In San Francisco, a group of people discover the human race is being replaced one by one, with clones devoid of emotion.

Director: Philip Kaufman
Stars: Donald Sutherland, Brooke Adams, Jeff Goldblum
Angel Heart (1987)
Horror | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Harry Angel has a new case, to find a man called Johnny Favourite. Except things aren't quite that simple, and Johnny doesn't want to be found. Let's just say that, amongst the period ... See full summary »

Director: Alan Parker
Stars: Mickey Rourke, Robert De Niro, Lisa Bonet
Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

Five friends visiting their grandfather's house in the country are hunted and terrorized by a chain-saw wielding killer and his family of grave-robbing cannibals.

Director: Tobe Hooper
Stars: Marilyn Burns, Edwin Neal, Allen Danziger
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Dr. Blair (as A. Wilford Brimley)
...
...
...
...
Charles Hallahan ...
...
...
...
...
...
Windows (as Thomas Waites)
...
...
Norwegian Passenger with Rifle (as Larry Franco)
Nate Irwin ...
Edit

Storyline

An American scientific expedition to the frozen wastes of the Antarctic is interrupted by a group of seemingly mad Norwegians pursuing and shooting a dog. The helicopter pursuing the dog explodes, eventually leaving no explanation for the chase. During the night, the dog mutates and attacks other dogs in the cage and members of the team that investigate. The team soon realizes that an alien life-form with the ability to take over other bodies is on the loose and they don't know who may already have been taken over. Written by Goth <brooks@odie.ee.wits.ac.za>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

dog | helicopter | american | alien | norwegian | See more »

Taglines:

Look closely at your neighbour ... Trust no-one ... They might be THE THING [UK video box] See more »


Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Official Sites:

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

25 June 1982 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

John Carpenter's The Thing  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$15,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$3,107,897 (USA) (2 July 1982)

Gross:

$3,107,897 (USA) (2 July 1982)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(35 mm prints)| (70 mm prints)

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The producers consider the film's disappointing box office performance was down to the fact that people were flocking to a more benign interpretation of an alien presence on earth - Steven Spielberg's E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial (1982) which was released several weeks beforehand. See more »

Goofs

At one point they are looking out the window at the thermometer which reads well below zero. There sure is a lot of moisture and water drops out there for being so cold. See more »

Quotes

George Bennings: [Watching a video of the Norwegians] How much more of this crap is there?
Dr. Copper: Well, nine hours, I'd say.
George Bennings: We can't learn anything from this.
Dr. Copper: Guess not.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Monsters vs Aliens (2009) See more »

Soundtracks

SUPERSTITION
Written and Performed by Stevie Wonder
Courtesy of Motown Record Corporation
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Good things come to those who wait
27 May 2000 | by (Copenhagen, Denmark) – See all my reviews

* * * * ½ (4½ out of 5)

The Thing

Directed by: John Carpenter, 1982

Looking back on John Carpenter's The Thing – today a highly treasured cult favourite – one has to wonder why it was dismissed by both the audience and critics when it first came out in 1982.

Steven Spielberg's extra terrestrial adventure about a sweet alien that phoned home (that stole the hearts of both children and adults world wide) had opened just two weeks before and was on its historic box office rampage. Bad scheduling may have had a greater impact than anything else on the fate of Carpenter's first big studio effort for Universal Pictures. Nobody was prepared – moreover wanted anything so dark, gory and scary as this genuine remake of the famous 1951 original. This was the time of E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial.

It then makes for great movie history trivia, that The Thing has gained such a remarkable afterlife on video, DVD and television. Both financially and critically. Carpenter's version is less a remake of the Howard Hawks' version than a more faithful adaptation of John W. Campbell's short story "Who Goes There?' (on which both were based), and critics today point out how well Carpenter plays his characters against each other. Kurt Russell will never top this one, and he gets a brilliant sparring from the entire cast.

It opens in Antarctica with a sled husky running from a pair of crazed and armed Norwegian men in a helicopter. The scene is long, slow and uneasy. It feels like the Apocalypse. It oozes doomsday.

This scene comprises one of the greatest opening sequences in film history.

Ennio Morricone's moody synth score (heavy on naked thumping bass lines in classic Carpenter style), the windswept massive white of the desolate polar ice and the majestic husky running across the tundra chased by the chopper, compromises a completely mesmerizing piece of scenery.

A satisfying example of a movie that today – 18 years after – looks downright muscular in its simplicity.

The budget was big ($14 mill), yet it allowed Carpenter to visualize his ideas better than ever before. There's a brooding darkness to this film, making the whites and blues of the icy Antarctic claustrophobia seem poetic and almost angelic. Dean Cundey's extraordinary photography created a palpable chill to every shot. The careful preparation (the crew went into a record 11-month pre-production) paid off immensely.

Horror specialist Rob Bottin was handpicked for the many gory and grotesque special effects. Be warned – there's a lot of splatter and gore here. The Thing is actually notorious for its creature morphing scenes. Some find them disgusting, some mere cult.

An argument could be made against The Thing being an Alien rip-off; it has its origins in an old sci-fi story and it creates tension by popping a crowd of people (note: all-male) on an isolated outpost (an Antarctic research facility) terrorized by an alien life form.

Where Carpenter was clearly inspired by Ridley Scott's 1979 masterpiece, his own alien movie is original and intriguing in its own right. There's a rhythm and an environment that equals Scott's in every way.

The husky was in fact half-wolf and half-dog, and it was noted that it never barked or growled on or off the set (Horror Takes Shape, the making of - DVD version).

Watch in awe at the scene where it walks through the hallway and stares at a human shadow, slightly tilting its head forward in stalking position like a wild wolf. This is a fine piece of animal training, sure, but that's not the point. This is as spooky as anything ever made in a horror movie.

Carpenter had all the right tools here, and he utilized them to perfection, making The Thing his best movie alongside Halloween.


302 of 341 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Why? wpcoop2000
How does anybody like this movie? vampirevincent_d
The ending jack-cameron14081997
wonderment/question AleksandarVukovic7
Why aren't there more? jordanmccune
Ending jurassickid97-172-310845
Discuss The Thing (1982) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page