Wednesday, January 30, 2008

SHORT FEATURE: THE THING (LEGO VERSION)

PART 1

PART 2

I realize that by sticking to my shtick here of reviewing only low budget productions, it means that a lot of people's favorite movies (including mine) got left out of our John Carpenter mini film festival. So, following the example of St. Paul in his First Epistle to the Corinthians, "I have become all things to all people, that I might by all means save some." Which, in this context, means saving you from the trouble of telling me how much I suck for not including your favorite John Carpenter movie. As it happens, I am able to give you The Thing, while at the same time still showing you something that probably cost about 20 bucks to make.

One of the central themes in The Thing is the total breakdown of the social structure when trust is removed from the mix. "We trust" is more important than it appears on the surface." writes Fr. John A. Hardon, S.J., "Without trust, there can be no hope... Our lives are built on hope. A hopeless life is a despairing life." Is there any better example of this than the final scene of The Thing in which the two surviving characters, still untrusting of one another, devoid of all hope, sit down in the snow and wait to die? Heck, it even comes across when it's done with Legos.

5 comments:

Wm. said...

Don't get me wrong, you know I love this movie. But the end always was troubling. The whole point of the second act is that they can't let the thing escape. As they say, "it wants to go to sleep."

So then why do MacReady and Childs simply sit down and wait to freeze? Doesn't that set the movie up for a sequel?

EegahInc said...

Yeah, you're probably right. Logically there's some problems with the ending. I always wondered why they shared the liquor after making a point earlier in the film not to let others touch your food.

Thematically, though, I still think it works as a study in despair and hopelessness. It's kind of an anti-Shawshank Redemption.

Scott said...

My favorite JC movie.

"Maybe we're at war with Norway."

LMAO!


P.S. I agree, clunky ending.

Wm. said...

You know, Roger Ebert (who I don't particularly like and begrudgingly agree with this time) once noted that the Thing has to get a person alone to take them over. Yet the remaining characters seem to make a point of getting separated for the remainder of the movie; with deadly consequences, of course. If they all sat in a room staring at each other they might not get taken over, but we probably wouldn't be watching by that point. We'll call it this movie's poison pill.

Scott said...

Yet the remaining characters seem to make a point of getting separated for the remainder of the movie; with deadly consequences, of course.

Good point. Isolating characters is horror-flick standard operating procedure, but in this case it sticking to it creates a plot problem.