It's the first week of winter in 1982. An American Research Base is greeted by an alien force, that can assimilate anything it touches. It's up to the members to stay alive, and be sure of who is human, and who has become one of the Things.



(screenplay), (story)
511 ( 14)

Watch Now

From $2.99 (SD) on Amazon Video

Top Rated Movies #164 | 3 nominations. See more awards »



Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

The Thing I (2011)
Horror | Mystery | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

At an Antarctica research site, the discovery of an alien craft leads to a confrontation between graduate student Kate Lloyd and scientist Dr. Sander Halvorson.

Director: Matthijs van Heijningen Jr.
Stars: Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Joel Edgerton, Ulrich Thomsen
Alien (1979)
Horror | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  

After a space merchant vessel perceives an unknown transmission as distress call, their landing on the source moon finds one of the crew attacked by a mysterious lifeform. Continuing their journey back to Earth with the attacked crew having recovered and the critter deceased, they soon realize that its life cycle has merely begun.

Director: Ridley Scott
Stars: Sigourney Weaver, Tom Skerritt, John Hurt
Aliens (1986)
Action | Adventure | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.4/10 X  

The moon from Alien (1979) has been colonized, but contact is lost. This time, the rescue team has impressive firepower, but will it be enough?

Director: James Cameron
Stars: Sigourney Weaver, Michael Biehn, Carrie Henn
Halloween (1978)
Horror | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

On Halloween night of 1963, six-year-old Michael Myers stabbed his sister to death. After sitting in a mental hospital for 15 years, Myers escapes and returns to Haddonfield to kill.

Director: John Carpenter
Stars: Donald Pleasence, Jamie Lee Curtis, Tony Moran
The Exorcist (1973)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

When a teenage girl is possessed by a mysterious entity, her mother seeks the help of two priests to save her daughter.

Director: William Friedkin
Stars: Ellen Burstyn, Max von Sydow, Linda Blair
Blade Runner (1982)
Sci-Fi | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  

A blade runner must pursue and try to terminate four replicants who stole a ship in space and have returned to Earth to find their creator.

Director: Ridley Scott
Stars: Harrison Ford, Rutger Hauer, Sean Young
The Evil Dead (1981)
Fantasy | Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

Five friends travel to a cabin in the woods, where they unknowingly release flesh-possessing demons.

Director: Sam Raimi
Stars: Bruce Campbell, Ellen Sandweiss, Richard DeManincor
The Shining (1980)
Drama | Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.4/10 X  

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.

Director: Stanley Kubrick
Stars: Jack Nicholson, Shelley Duvall, Danny Lloyd
Jaws (1975)
Adventure | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

When a gigantic great white shark begins to menace the small island community of Amity, a police chief, a marine scientist and a grizzled fisherman set out to stop it.

Director: Steven Spielberg
Stars: Roy Scheider, Robert Shaw, Richard Dreyfuss
Action | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

In 1997, when the U.S. president crashes into Manhattan, now a giant maximum security prison, a convicted bank robber is sent in to rescue him.

Director: John Carpenter
Stars: Kurt Russell, Lee Van Cleef, Ernest Borgnine
Action | Horror | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

Following an ever-growing epidemic of zombies that have risen from the dead, two Philadelphia S.W.A.T. team members, a traffic reporter, and his television executive girlfriend seek refuge in a secluded shopping mall.

Director: George A. Romero
Stars: David Emge, Ken Foree, Scott H. Reiniger
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

Several people are hunted by a cruel serial killer who kills his victims in their dreams. While the survivors are trying to find the reason for being chosen, the murderer won't lose any chance to kill them as soon as they fall asleep.

Director: Wes Craven
Stars: Heather Langenkamp, Johnny Depp, Robert Englund


Cast overview, first billed only:
Dr. Blair (as A. Wilford Brimley)
Windows (as Thomas Waites)
Norwegian Passenger with Rifle (as Larry Franco)
Nate Irwin ...


A US research station, Antarctica, early-winter 1982. The base is suddenly buzzed and attacked by a helicopter from the nearby Norwegian research station. They appeared to be trying to kill one of the dogs from the US base. Having dealt with the threat, the members of the US team fly to the Norwegian base, only to discover them all dead or missing. They do find the remains of a strange creature the Norwegians burned. The Americans take it to their base and deduce that it an alien life form. After a while it is apparent that the alien can take over and assimilate into other life forms, including humans, and can spread like a virus. This means that anyone at the base could be inhabited by The Thing, and tensions escalate. Written by grantss

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Man is The Warmest Place to Hide. See more »


Horror | Mystery | Sci-Fi


R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:






Release Date:

25 June 1982 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

John Carpenter's The Thing  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$15,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$3,107,897 (USA) (2 July 1982)


$13,782,838 (USA)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(35 mm prints)| (70 mm prints)


Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Poster artist Drew Struzan created the poster for this film basically overnight and without having seen any publicity photos. See more »


(at around 1h 6 mins) When Mac yells to Norris in the rec room, "Any of them move you fry 'em," a shadow cast by the crew's boom mic can be seen on the wall above Clark, Copper, and Garry on the couch. See more »


MacReady: [about to test his blood] Now I'll show you what I already know.
See more »


Referenced in Video Nasties: Moral Panic, Censorship & Videotape (2010) See more »


Music by Billie Holiday (uncredited)
Lyrics by Arthur Herzog Jr. (uncredited)
Performed by Billie Holiday
Courtesy of MCA Records
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Intelligent Splatter
28 December 2003 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

This is another one of those films that I remember staying up late to watch on TV, scaring the crap out of myself at the impressionable age of 12 or so and dooming myself thereafter to a life of horror movie obsession. This is a GREAT movie, and stands as living proof that there were indeed realistic effects before CGI.

Set on an isolated base in Antarctica, this version seems almost to pick up where the original version (The Thing From Another World) left off. The American scientists discover a decimated Norwegian base some miles distant. Everyone is dead, and only the half charred remains of some unidentifiable thing left to smolder outside the compound might offer any answers to what may have happened. The Thing is brought back to the American base and, too late, the scientists realize that it is alive and lethal. The Thing thaws out and is off, not only killing anyone and anything that crosses Its path, but also absorbing them, making Itself into whoever and whatever it wants. The film then turns into a brilliant paranoia piece. Everyone is suspect, anyone can be The Thing, and no one trusts anyone anymore. Gone is the strength and security found when human beings band together in spite of their differences to battle a monster. The group splinters and fear rules supreme. Who is the Thing?

The gore effects here are absolutely amazing and messily realistic. I could have done without the dogs head splitting open like a banana peel, but that's just the animal lover in me being picky: kill all the humans you want, but leave the kitties and puppies alone. Sanity and reason disintegrate rapidly as, one by one, the humans are taken over by the shapeshifting alien. The power of this film lies in its paranoia, and although I liked the original version, I prefer this one; the real threat lies within, and is scarier for the fact that it cannot be seen or easily detected. When it is forced out of hiding, it's wrath is huge and the results are horrific.

This is one of Carpenters best films, right up there with The Fog and Halloween. All of the actors give strong, realistic performances and the special effects are so powerful that they stand as their own main character. This film has something for any lover of the horror genre. Don't miss it.

287 of 344 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Ending theory I haven't seen discussed anywhere... slaydemon
The 1951 version was better. mhansen-25806
Norris morphing into the thing Alex_RM7
How would you react? Alex_RM7
How did McReady get back? Alex_RM7
Razzie Nom for worst score?!?! clark_martin57
Discuss The Thing (1982) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page