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The Thing (2011)

November 12, 2011

November 3, 2011
08:05 PM
Cinema 5, Seat F10
Eastwood Mall
Quezon City

The first time I saw the trailer of the movie called The Thing, memories of my childhood came rushing back inside my head. Woah, I thought. Most likely, a good lot of people would immediately think of the Fantastic Four if ever they’d get to hear the title, but what came flashing from my not-so-distant past were scenes from one of the freakiest movies I’ve seen as a kid. That’s the power of thaaat movie for me. A quick search via Blackberry proved my hunch to be correct. The Thing is back and yes, it’s not human…. yet.

This is why after knowing that it was already showing, I had to make sure I’d see it without any noisy kids spoiling what could potentially be a nice and nostalgic moviegoing experience for me. So after work, while the working class that I belong to was still torn between attaining productivity and the next looong weekend just right after the recent vacation, I watched The Thing in a theatre that is only at most 5% occupied.

Ticket? Check. Taters? Check. Happy Lemon? Check. Ambiance? Perfect….

What I love about this movie is its mood. As I mentioned earlier, the first instalment I got to see before was when I was still a kid and had the 80’s feel written all-over it. Upon seeing the first few minutes of the film, I realized that the movie is not merely a remake, but it was another case of the prequel syndrome. Initially, I felt dismayed. However, a few minutes from the beginning of the film and I realized I’m gonna enjoy the fall.

What even made it more interesting is that this movie has drunken Norwegian blood all over its humanlike veins. As such, even for a movie buff that I am, almost none of the actors (except this guy and the female protagonist who is rather already somewhat popular but unfortunately looks like a lot of other celebrities like Katy Perry and Zooey Deschanel) successfully registered in my consciousness. That’s why most of the actors and actresses who portrayed their role had a clean slate for me. They were, for me, who they were supposed to be in the movie.

This is the reason although I find The Grudge 3 somewhat enjoyable, I still can’t help but imagine Sarah Michelle-Gellar locking lips with Selma Blair during the boring scenes. In The Thing, I’m pretty sure the actors would be almost nameless for a majority of the Filipino moviegoers. As such, for the purposes of a good scare factor, people would be pretty objective about their acting.

Moreover, without dwelling too much into the plot, what I also admire about this “John Carpenter” movie is that the humans represented our race in a manner that Charles Darwin would be proud of. Survival of the fittest reigned supreme and no time was wasted in acting out a kill-or-be-killed scenario. Yes, there were empathy but it was quickly dissolved by a clear logic, rationality, to an almost disturbing sacrifice to the temple of Utilitarianism. In one instance even, it shows to us that it pays to be imperfect, because perfection, it seems, is not very human at all.

With that in mind, this movie, albeit very interesting, is not absolute perfection. The special effects is not as topnotch as, say, Transformers, but the mixture of both visual and post production is good enough to give you that impression of what The Thing is all about. As for the setting, it’s Antartica. If the thrilling slow-motion chase scenes in White Out was good enough for you, then the vastness of this ice-prison should be good enough to put you in the right mood. And The Thing, hans’t even showed itself yet.


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