The Thing

The Thing

John Carpenter (1982)

X Certificate


Our Score
John Carpenter's remake of Howard Hawks and Christian Nyby's influential 1951 creature feature is a special-effects extravaganza of the highest order. In fact, the updated screenplay by Bill Lancaster (son of Burt) sticks more closely to the plot of the classic John W Campbell short story that inspired the original movie, as the occupants of a polar research station (which include Kurt Russell and A Wilford Brimley) are menaced by an alien with the ability to change its shape and impersonate its enemies. Carpenter stresses the slimy ET at the expense of characterisation, mood and practically everything else, yet it's precisely this one grisly facet that makes it such compelling science fiction. Even Alien can't hold a candle to the nightmarish images on offer here, so be warned.


A mysterious shape-shifting alien kills and impersonates its victims on an Antarctic research base manned by a crew of American scientists. The researchers face the ordeal of stopping the creature from making its way to civilisation - but are in danger of jeopardising the task as mounting paranoia turns them against each other. John Carpenter's sci-fi horror remake, starring Kurt Russell, Wilford Brimley, TK Carter, Keith David and Richard Dysart.

Cast & Crew

MacReady Kurt Russell
Blair Wilford Brimley
Nauls T K Carter
Palmer David Clennon
Childs Keith David
Dr Copper Richard Dysart
Norris Charles Hallahan
Bennings Peter Maloney
Clark Richard Masur
Garry Donald Moffat
Fuchs Joel Polis
Windows Thomas G Waites
Director John Carpenter
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Other Information

Language: EnglishColourTheatrical distributor: UniversalGuidance: May be edited for language and violence.Available on: video, DVD and Blu-rayReleased on: 11 Sep 2009