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The Thing (2011)

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Although they do have the same name, The Thing (2011) marks as a prequel to John Carpenter’s The Thing. If you’ve not seen the John Carpenter’s, I urge you to stop reading this, watch the film, and then come back, as this film will kind of give it away for the Carpenter version.

Based in the Norwegian camp that is explored during the 1982 version, the 2011 prequel does not differ much to the story line of the first. Aside from the fact the Norwegians make the initial discovery of the spaceship and the “thing” that is seen in the first film. When the Norwegians first find the spaceship, they assume there will be life within the ship, which is when they call upon Kate Lloyd (Mary Winstead Elizabeth) in help identifying anything that is found.

Rightly so, away from the ship, a creature is found in the ice frozen solid, where they decide to pry it out of the ice to take back to the camp for further investigation. After finding the creature to be out of this world, they begin to celebrate the discovery. An American member of the team decides that he wants to see this creature up close, but using shock factors and making you jump, the thing explodes out the ice and escapes. This of course cues panicking from the Norwegian crew to detain the alien.

Searchin for the alien around the camp site, two members of the crew find it, to which the alien decides to eat one of them, Henrik drawing the short straw. The alien is subsequently burnt underneath the shack, where it chose to hide and is dead. Instead of incererating the remains of the body, Dr. Halvorson demands it to be brought inside for further tests with Finch and Kate. Kate, Adam Finch (Eric Olsen) and Dr. Halvorson (Ulrich Thomsen). find out the alien, has a rather odd anatomy and had latched onto the now dead Henrik. Upon further inspection, Kate finds surgical steel set aside from the body, meaning the Alien had cast out the inorganic material.

When Dr Halvorson leaves, Kate Lloyd examines the cells of Henrik and finds the alien cells imitating Henrik’s cells, essentially becoming him. The latter half of the film is very similar to the 1982 version in the sense everyone becomes rather paranoid as to who’s what. Kate, in clear paranoia tries to distinguish between the crew members by checking the fillings, after finding some in the bathroom. This scene is very similar to the 1982 version, with the blood test.

“So I’m going to get killed because I floss?”

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Now, I don’t want to give anything away, but it’s pretty easy to tell what is going to happen if you’ve seen the 1982 The Thing.  However, it is an apt round circle for the 1982, which gives an explanation to the ending of 1982 The Thing. However, this prequel has a lot of jumpy, shock factors when the the alien transforms and appears. Whereas, John Carpenter’s version made myself start to feel very paranoid about what is going to happen and worried, immersing myself into the film. Unfortunately, this was not bridged as I guessed who is what and when it was going to happen.

Don’t get me wrong, I still enjoyed it, but being a prequel to John Carpenter’s film was always going to be a difficult task with what Carpenter achieved in the original. I preferred the mystery surrounding the alien, whereas in this, more of the alien is revealed in it’s true form. But alas, I’m comparing too much. Standing alone, the film is decent, inducing paranoia, but to me, predictable with who was the alien essentially.

3/5

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Author: Nathan Harris

Currently studying Film & Television studies and Media Writing at Derby University. Hopefully wanting to become a film critic/journalist.

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