A family heads to an isolated hotel for the winter where an evil and spiritual presence influences the father into violence, while his psychic son sees horrific forebodings from the past and of the future.
A human-looking indestructible cyborg is sent from 2029 to 1984 to assassinate a waitress, whose unborn son will lead humanity in a war against the machines, while a soldier from that war is sent to protect her at all costs.
An American scientific expedition to the frozen wastes of the Antarctic is interrupted by a group of seemingly mad Norwegians pursuing and shooting a dog. The helicopter pursuing the dog explodes, eventually leaving no explanation for the chase. During the night, the dog mutates and attacks other dogs in the cage and members of the team that investigate. The team soon realizes that an alien life-form with the ability to take over other bodies is on the loose and they don't know who may already have been taken over. Written by
John Carpenter comments that one of the bush pilots used on the film offered to crash one of the helicopters for money. When MacReady and Dr. Copper go to visit the Norwegian camp via helicopter, the bush pilot actually turned the controls over to Kurt Russell once the chopper was off the ground. If you watch the shot you see the 'copter actually wobble - that's Russell taking the controls. See more »
When MacReady visits Fuchs in his room, and Fuchs mentions preparing their own food, et cetera, there is a beaker of dark brown liquid on his desk. When the lamp flickers we get a close-up of the beaker and it now contains clear liquid. See more »
[talking into tape recorder]
I'm gonna hide this tape when I'm finished. If none of us make it, at least there'll be some kind of record. The storm's been hitting us hard now for 48 hours. We still have nothing to go on.
[MacReady briefly turns off tape recorder and takes a drink of whisky. He looks at the torn long johns and turns it back on]
One other thing: I think it rips through your clothes when it takes you over. Windows found some shredded long johns, but the nametag was missing. They ...
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Flips the scenario round from the original to great effect.
John Carpenter shows how much he loves the 1951 original by giving it the utmost respect that he possibly could, the only difference here is that Carpenter chooses to stick to the paranoiac core of John W Campbell Jr's short story. The secret to this version's success is the unbearable tension that builds up as the group of men become suspicious of each other, the strain of literally waiting to be taken over takes a fearful hold. Carpenter manages to deliver the shocks as well as the mystery needed to keep the film heading in the right direction. Be it an horrific scene or a "what is in the shadow" sequence, the film to me is a perfect fusion of horror and sci-fi. The dialogue is spot on for a group of men trying to keep it together under duress, and Ennio Morricone's score is a wonderful eerie pulse beat that further racks up the sense of doom and paranoia seaming thru the film. The cast are superb, a solid assembly of actors led by Carpenter fave Kurt Russell, whilst the effects used give the right amount of impact needed. But most of all it's the ending that is the crowning glory, an ending that doesn't pander to the norm and is incredibly fitting for what has gone on before it.
Lets wait and see what happens indeed. 10/10
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