The Thing (2011) is the thing no one speaks of. As well as the prequel to The Thing (1982) I always assumed was a remake. It might as well have been a remake since all the best moments are rehashed in a less satisfying way. The prequel actually follows the 1982 Norwegian team that died before the events of the original. Although the Arctic researchers still need Americans in it. Otherwise it would all be in subtitles.
The Thing (2011) also includes ideas present in The Thing from Another World. Specifically the team finding the alien in a block of ice. As well as two female characters balancing the predominantly male cast. Mary Elizabeth Winstead is a Ripley type who takes the lead and uses a flamethrower against the thing. The biggest problem is that CGI was used on the thing instead of the groundbreaking practical effects that came before. Making the deformed shapeshifter look half rendered with rubber partially gruesome skin. There’s just no passion behind it.
There’s still a sense of paranoia, but you don’t really feel a strong lack of trust. The blood test is replaced by a less tension filled tooth inspection. The flying saucer is seen, but it all feels like too much for something claiming to follow the original. The only indication of the decade is one 80’s song. There’s some feeling of mild dread, but the ending that ties directly into The Thing (1982) is the only reason to care. Like the thing itself, The Thing (2011) is just a cheap imitation.
Followed by: The Thing (1982)