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The Thing from Another World (1951)

Not Rated | | Horror, Sci-Fi | 22 July 1951 (Brazil)
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4:54 | Clip

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ON DISC
Scientists and American Air Force officials fend off a bloodthirsty alien organism while at a remote arctic outpost.

Directors:

Christian Nyby, Howard Hawks (uncredited)

Writers:

Charles Lederer (screenplay), John W. Campbell Jr. (based on the story "Who Goes There?" by)
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Popularity
3,914 ( 401)
1 win. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Margaret Sheridan ... Nikki Nicholson
Kenneth Tobey ... Capt. Patrick Hendry
Robert Cornthwaite ... Dr. Arthur Carrington
Douglas Spencer ... Ned Scott
James Young ... Lt. Eddie Dykes
Dewey Martin ... Crew Chief Bob
Robert Nichols Robert Nichols ... Lt. Ken Erickson
William Self William Self ... Cpl. Barnes
Eduard Franz ... Dr. Stern
Sally Creighton Sally Creighton ... Mrs. Chapman
James Arness ... 'The Thing'
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Storyline

Scientists at an Arctic research station discover a spacecraft buried in the ice. Upon closer examination, they discover the frozen pilot. All hell breaks loose when they take him back to their station and he is accidentally thawed out! Written by KC Hunt <khunt@eng.morgan.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

What do you know about it? What does science know about it? What does ANYONE know about THE THING? (Newspaper ad). See more »

Genres:

Horror | Sci-Fi

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

22 July 1951 (Brazil) See more »

Also Known As:

The Thing See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$1,600,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$4,251,000, 31 December 1951
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (re-issue) | (original US 16 mm television syndication prints)

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

According to Make-up Artist Lee Greenway, he took James Arness in his car to the house of Producer and co-Director Howard Hawks to show off the make up for The Thing. After months of frustration, Hawks told Greenway to put a Frankenstein (1931) type of headpiece on Arness. See more »

Goofs

The window behind the characters during the "tied hands" scene (about 37 minutes into the movie) shows a rapidly changing background, which would fit movement in a train or perhaps an airplane, but not the stationary room where the characters are supposed to be. See more »

Quotes

Dr. Chapman: Find anything, Captain?
Hendry: Not a sign. We poked into every snowbank within miles.
Bob, Crew Chief: Barnes flushed a polar bear.
Cpl. Barnes: Sure did.
Dr. Chapman: Scare you?
Cpl. Barnes: Not after I saw it was only a bear.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Only technical and production credits precede the film, no acting credits. See more »

Alternate Versions

Some editions include a scene between Captain Hendry and Nikki right before the Thing escapes. In the scene Hendry "allows" Nikki to tie his hands behind his back. When she tries to give him a drink he slips free grabs her and kisses her. The film then cuts to the Thing in the storage room. This scene is included on the Region 1 DVD release. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Creature (1985) See more »

Soundtracks

The Dying Cowboy aka Bury Me Not on the Lone Prairie
(uncredited)
Traditional
Portion whistled by William Self
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

a must-see for fans of sci-fi and horror
4 August 2005 | by StanleyStrangeloveSee all my reviews

The Thing, released in 1951, is the original hostile alien movie, a must-see for fans of sci-fi and horror.

Major director Howard Hawks (Sergeant York, The Big Sleep, Red River, Rio Bravo) produced it but some sources (Leonard Maltin) credit him as co-director. Christian Nyby, a film editor for Hawks, is officially credited as the director. Whoever directed it, The Thing is an impeccably crafted movie. It's considered as a Grade B movie, probably because of its subject matter, but it's one of the best Grade B's along with Them and Invasion of the Body Snatchers.

A group of scientists at the North Pole discover something buried in the ice. Unknowingly they bring back part of it to the camp for study.

The acting is solid and the characters are given great dialog. Kenneth Tobey is the take charge Captain Patrick Hendry. Robert Cornthwaite is great as the slightly nutty Dr. Carrington. Douglas Spencer as Scotty is fun as the wisecracking reporter always looking for a photo. Margaret Sheridan is Nikki the shapely love interest. James Arness plays The Thing monster. With an ensemble cast of supporting actors. Be sure to rent the DVD version because it has a few scenes between Tobey and Sheridan that were always cut for TV and VHS probably because they were considered a little too racy for the time although now they are just cute.

The film has held up well for over fifty years. The film's contributors were seasoned professionals who had worked on major films. The screenplay by Charles Lederer (Mutiny on the Bounty, Ocean's Eleven, Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, His Girl Friday) is full of crisp dialog. The black and white cinematography by Russell Harlan (Red River, Witness for the Prosecution, To Kill A Mockingbird, Run Silent Run Deep) makes everything look right. The prolific film composer Dmitri Tiompkin provides a very eerie, theremin-based score.

After 50 years this movie rightly earns the label of classic.


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