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The Thing (2011)



Average Rating: 5/10
Reviews Counted: 161
Fresh: 57 | Rotten: 104

It serves the bare serviceable minimum for a horror flick, but The Thing is all boo-scares and a slave to the far superior John Carpenter version.


Average Rating: 5/10
Critic Reviews: 33
Fresh: 9 | Rotten: 24

It serves the bare serviceable minimum for a horror flick, but The Thing is all boo-scares and a slave to the far superior John Carpenter version.



liked it
Average Rating: 3.1/5
User Ratings: 39,685

My Rating

Movie Info

Paleontologist Kate Lloyd (Mary Elizabeth Winstead) has traveled to the desolate region for the expedition of her lifetime. Joining a Norwegian scientific team that has stumbled across an extraterrestrial ship buried in the ice, she discovers an organism that seems to have died in the crash eons ago. But it is about to wake up. When a simple experiment frees the alien from its frozen prison, Kate must join the crew's pilot, Carter (Joel Edgerton), to keep it from killing them off one at a time.

Jan 31, 2012


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October 14, 2011:
Critics Consensus: Footloose is Toe-Tapping Fun
This week at the movies, we've got Sunday shoes removal (Footloose, starring Kenny Wormald and...
October 10, 2011:
Matthijs van Heijningen Talks The Thing
The director discusses his remake, thawing out at theaters this weekend.


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All Critics (161) | Top Critics (33) | Fresh (57) | Rotten (104) | DVD (2)

Efficient enough for newcomers perhaps, but never that chilling, and the predictably dull CGI underlines how far movie magic has regressed in the past couple of decades.

November 29, 2011 Full Review Source: Time Out
Time Out
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The line between homage and apery is a fine one, and The Thing teeters on it at times.

October 14, 2011 Full Review Source: The Atlantic | Comments (2)
The Atlantic
Top Critic IconTop Critic

"It's big on the grotesquery but short on genuine scares."

October 14, 2011 Full Review Source: Richard | Comments (32)
Top Critic IconTop Critic

It's not rocket science, but The Thing does offer solid cheap thrills for the slick gore crowd, proving once again: Horror doesn't have to be horrible.

October 14, 2011 Full Review Source: Detroit News
Detroit News
Top Critic IconTop Critic

John Carpenter should approve of this reasonably respectful and tough-minded prequel to his 1982 The Thing.

October 14, 2011 Full Review Source: Village Voice | Comments (4)
Village Voice
Top Critic IconTop Critic

It's no great thing, just a better Thing than expected.

October 14, 2011 Full Review Source: Globe and Mail | Comment (1)
Globe and Mail
Top Critic IconTop Critic

A misguided and generally worthless prequel...

August 11, 2013 Full Review Source: Reel Film Reviews
Reel Film Reviews

There's just no sense of dread in this "Thing," no notion that these people are truly at the edge of the world, with nowhere to escape and no one to trust.

June 23, 2013 Full Review Source: Deadspin

Since Heijningen already had dibs on The Thing's hallowed name, he didn't even bother trying to conjure any of its slow-burning suspense or claustrophobic vibe.

February 15, 2013 Full Review Source: Georgia Straight

For a creature feature set on the South Pole, it lacks urgency, or even a sense that it's very cold in Antarctica.

January 1, 2013 Full Review Source: McClatchy-Tribune News Service
McClatchy-Tribune News Service

The fact that The Thing falls flat is proof positive that unlike the film's industrious alien, parasitic remakes can't easily carbon copy the host.

September 22, 2012 Full Review Source: We Got This Covered
We Got This Covered

Gets the externals but can't duplicate the authentic chill and isolation of the original.

April 30, 2012 Full Review Source:

If this take is perfectly passable, it also is distinctly forgettable.

April 6, 2012 Full Review Source:

Can't possibly compare to the film it's inspired by, but if you've not seen the 1982 version, you should find it reasonably harmless, albeit with an increasingly daft climax.

March 22, 2012 Full Review Source: Film4

"The Thing" is not half as good as the Carpenter film, but it has enough shocks and scares to keep you interested. And, if you see it first, then at least you have the back story for viewing the 1982 classic. Gore is good. Paul Chambers, CNN.

February 4, 2012 Full Review Source: CNNRadio

It does nothing better than John Carpenter's version, but it borrows and steals enough of the stuff that works from his film to carry it to some level of lowest-common-denominator entertainment.

February 3, 2012 Full Review Source:

There's nothing really new about this remake/prequel, but the film's attention to continuity and detail is respectable and interesting for fans of John Carpenter's 1982 classic.

February 1, 2012 Full Review Source: IGN DVD

Pointless prequel to the 1982 sci-fi/horror classic. One of the five worst films of 2011.

December 30, 2011 Full Review Source: Movie Dearest | Comments (3)
Movie Dearest

This is the third time I've watched the John W. Campbell Jr. story 'Who Goes There?' unfold. I have to admit the monster in this one is the most disgusting and thereby the most fascinating of all three.

December 22, 2011 Full Review Source: KWQC-TV (Iowa)
KWQC-TV (Iowa)

Van Heijningen Jr's The Thing still works as a perfectly watchable contemporary sci-fi thriller on the surface by creating enough entertaining scares ...

December 8, 2011 Full Review Source:

There are a few tense moments, but the plot is packed full of clichés - imagine, the radio is dead and there's a storm coming!

December 8, 2011 Full Review Source: Birmingham Post | Comments (4)
Birmingham Post

Van Heijningen has again reinterpreted the material, he has instead done so for an era in which horror films are remade by commercials directors who get the look, but miss the feel, of the original article.

December 8, 2011 Full Review Source: Fan The Fire
Fan The Fire

A slow hand clap for all concerned, please.

December 7, 2011 Full Review Source: The Ooh Tray
The Ooh Tray

Not bad, but what Cole Porter might dismiss as just one of those things.

December 4, 2011 Full Review Source: Observer [UK]
Observer [UK]

The themes of paranoia and isolation are the same as Carpenter's film, but the effects aren't a patch on the original.

December 2, 2011 Full Review Source: Daily Mirror [UK]
Daily Mirror [UK]

This isn't the real Thing; keep it at bay.

December 2, 2011 Full Review Source: This is London
This is London

Audience Reviews for The Thing

An Arctic research team discovers an alien spaceship buried in the ice and unwittingly unleashes a hostile life form that is capable of absorbing and duplicating any living creature it comes into contact with. Touted as a prequel to John Carpenter's seminal horror classic, every single major plot point is exactly the same as the 1982 film and so this "reinvention" is really just yet another example of Hollywood's seeming attempt to remake every film of the 1980s. In fact, like The Invasion before it, The Thing is in fact a remake of a remake and while Carpenter's film was a sublime exercise in paranoia and suspense, this version follows the usual modern horror formula of "hottie chased through darkened rooms by CGI monster". That's not to say that this film is awful by any means and it is in fact a pretty decent shocker and the bridging sequence during the closing credits is actually really well done. But given the choice between "stone cold classic" and "okay monster movie" I know which I'd choose every time, which begs the question "What was the point...?"
March 28, 2014
xGary Xx

Super Reviewer

See the original.
October 3, 2012

Super Reviewer

At first, I thought it would be a hopeless remake of John Carpenter's masterpiece. It eventually came out only slightly better than I thought.

For those who have seen the original 1982 version, you would know about certain events that were left unanswered. From the Norwegian base, the two-faced corpse and the dog. This basically answers all those. So, there isn't really a strong story behind it. This is IF you have seen John Carpenter's version.

If you could only find one similarity with the original, it has to be the extreme violence and gore. Arguably, the prequel is visually more disturbing, only because of the advancements in technology. Best advice; don't have a full stomach when watching this film. When it comes to scares; they are very predictable and cheap.

There were certain lines and maybe events in the film that made the film seem more of a remake than a prequel.

With regards to acting,the attention should focus on Mary Elizabeth Winstead, who gave the most promising role in the film; proving her capability of being the protagonist. SPOILER! However, the camera was focusing on her for the majority of the film, so it was obvious that she would live.

Overall, it may not be greatest prequel to such a masterpiece. But its worth a try, eventually.
August 7, 2012
Samuel Riley
Samuel Riley

Super Reviewer

The 82 version of The Thing is awesome. It has a huge fan following that includes me. We didn't want a crappy sequel, this is horror holy grail, it is sacred, leave it alone is what I thought (and I'm not alone). I put my hands up and say sorry, as this version, a prequel, was brilliant. It's so cleverly done and is so respectful to the original, I've just got to congratulate the film makers. I can't think of a remake/sequel that has been as thorough and as lovingly made in tribute to an original. The 82 version was a remake made out of love and respect by Carpenter to the 1951 The Thing from another world, that's a great film too. I watched the making of doc on the DVD and one of the producers says it best when he says that people don't make films like this anymore so someone has to keep it going, and that's damn right. I thought it was excellent.
August 3, 2012

Super Reviewer

    1. Kate Lloyd: Do you think that's a really good idea?
    – Submitted by Mark T (2 years ago)
    1. Kate Lloyd: Burn it!
    – Submitted by Cynthia K (3 years ago)
    1. Kate Lloyd: If it makes it out of here, millions of people die!
    – Submitted by Ben C (3 years ago)
    1. Kate Lloyd: Not all of us are human!
    – Submitted by Ben C (3 years ago)
    1. Kate Lloyd: Either someone miraculously healed themself... or someone is not who they say they are.
    – Submitted by Ben C (3 years ago)
    1. Kate Lloyd: Did you hear that?
    – Submitted by Ben C (3 years ago)
View all quotes (6)

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