Movies-A-Go-Go: The Thing

1982 sci-fi horror movie

Rating: 14/20

Plot: An alien visiting Antarctica annoys people and dogs stationed there.

I can't believe how long ago I watched this movie. I'm glad I Movie-A-Go-Go'd it and wish I had done the same with the other 33 movies that I'm currently trying to catch up on. Anyway, here's what I typed about this horror classic while I watched it:

This is my second Movies-A-Go-Go in a row-row.

Ennio Morricone. I believe I remember reading that some of this score or some unused pieces originally made for this movie were used in The Hateful Eight.

Hunting for dogs from a helicopter. That’s totally bad ass.

I was around 9 when this came out, and I remember my step-brother, who was in his 20s at the time but living with us, coming home from seeing this, I think at a drive-in. I wasn’t supposed to be up but had been surreptitiously listening to a baseball game or something. I could tell he was upset by the sound of his voice, and I crept halfway downstairs for a listen. He was crying and talking about how he’d seen The Thing and that there was a dog in an early scene and that he just knew something bad was going to happen to that dog. I believe this is the earliest exposure to a person stoned out of his mind that I can remember.


Bearded Kurt Russell playing chess with a computer. I think Garry Kasparov poured alcohol on Deep Blue after losing his match, too, so you can’t really say anything about Russell’s behavior there. Or the behavior of his beard.

Blowing up your own helicopter because you threw a grenade backwards--that's not bad ass.

Hold on? There’s nobody on the entire continent? Aren’t they in the North? That would have to be a pretty populated continent, no?

Oh, wait. I'm wrong. I believe they're actually in the South, not the North. I should probably just delete the last thought, but that wouldn't be in the spirit of Movies-A-Go-Go. If there's one thing I care about as a blogger, it's integrity.

Silly bald white guy. You don’t ask a brother to turn down Stevie Wonder. Ever!

There’s the dog again. I have a feeling I should be watching this movie stoned.

The helicopter is submerging the Morricone again! I hope there’s music in this for the moments when helicopters aren’t flying.

These Norwegians run a pretty tight ship.

Man, that iced-over guy with the straight razor imagery sure is chilling. No pun intended.

Now, there’s almost too much music. But I love it. Carpenter’s smart enough to let Morricone do a lot of the work here.

This probably isn’t the response Carpenter wanted, but the thing with two faces actually looks a little tasty to me. Like a caramel-covered confectionery treat. It's like a Sugar Daddy!

Desperately still searching for corporate sponsors for my blog. 

Come on, Suspenders! Let’s see how many internal organs you can name! Heart, liver, lungs, intestines. What about a spleen? Appendix?

Bald white guy’s really no fun, is he? “Turn down that Stevie Wonder! Put the mutt where he belongs!”

And when there’s no Morricone, the sound of a frigid, blustery winter is good enough for me. This movie almost works as well with your eyes closed.

What? Dogs aren’t supposed to do that?

I think it just jizzed on him!

The special effects are as slimy as it gets, but I’m really digging all the squelching sounds.

Well, it has been ten minutes since the last autopsy scene. Besides, you’ve got to give Suspenders something to do. Here’s what is clearly disturbing--he hasn’t changed his shirt or suspenders since the last autopsy. Or maybe he’s like Einstein and has a closet full of the same outfit. That's genius!

Is Wilford Brimley's Suspenders a band name? Should it be? 

My God, Kurt Russell! That hat! Suddenly, those suspenders seem like child's play.

This picture doesn't do the hat justice. No wonder Goldie Hawn gets a hard-on for the guy!

I’m surprised a helicopter can even stay in the air while holding a hat of that magnitude.

This shot where they’re looking down at the spaceship at the edge of a crater reminds me of a shot where Indiana Jones is looking at the spaceship in that fourth movie. Intentional?

I always thought this movie was named after the alien monster, but “The Thing” is clearly Kurt Russell’s ridiculous hat.

Suspenders, that computer doesn’t really seem all that powerful. In the 80s, I was making programs in my computer class to have the computer complete simple math problems and make my name appear on the screen over and over again. And that seems like the only things computers could do back then. So figuring out the probability of assimilation? I really doubt it.

Spoiler alert: The black guy is going to die next.

Two-faced caramel-covered man is going to win somebody the Nobel Prize? God, I hope it’s Bob Dylan.

OK, so I wasn’t right. Bald White Guy ended up dying next.

This movie’s a real sausage fest, isn’t it? Other than the voice of the chess computer, there hasn’t been a single female in this thing.

The above fact makes me wonder if this is a movie about masturbation. There was a jizz reference earlier. I'm going to have to put more thought into it.

As Suspenders is beating the shit out of the equipment and raving, I just wish he was saying, “This is what happens when you fuck a stranger in the ass!”

Blair’s too far gone? You’re saying that with a straight face to a man donning that hat?

Me: "I think they should do a blood test on the hat."
Imaginary Reader: "But hat’s don’t have blood, Shane."
Me: "And you, imaginary reader, don’t understand science fiction."

Men sure love flame-throwing things.

“I might just have to put an end to you on general principles.” If I had a dime for every time I said that to a middle school student, I’d have near 30 cents.

I’m not sure why they had to make 2-inch gashes in their thumbs to draw blood.

OK, the screeching blood moving along the floor was a cool effect, and there’s more squelchy goodness a few seconds after that. But when Windows is having his head eaten, he’s such an obvious dummy that it’s laughably awesome.

First, I was way off on the black guy being the next to die. I also got the number of black guys wrong. There are two, and they look like they’ll be around for a while.

Suspenders popping out and putting his hand in the guy’s face is accompanied by one of the weirder sound effects I’ve heard in a while.

There’s that hat. Whatever happens to these characters, I’m taking comfort in knowing that the hat is likely going to survive this movie.

“Yeah, fuck you, too!” Don’t you just have to love the 1980s?

Note: This is one of my lighter Movies-A-Go-Go efforts, probably because I was distracted by the hat. God bless that thing. 

Christmas present idea for your favorite blogger. . .


cory said...

I respect your integrity but feel like this Go-Go was a bit hat-centric. I liked this a bit more than your 14. It's one of those movies where, if you are randomly flipping through channels, it will hook you. I liked the premise, the who-is-it mystery, and the no-nonse nasty horror mood all the way through. This is kind of like "Alien" in many ways (high praise, indeed) and Russell is a long way from Disney and Gilligan's Island. Besides an almost complete lack of comic one-liners, I can't really find any flaw in a horror movie that terrorizes the audience almost as much as the on-screen characters. A 16.

Shane said...

I suppose I can see a similarity to 'Alien' here.

Wait a like comic one-liners? You wanted them?

cory said...

Nah. It was supposed to be funny.