In my opinion there is no greater fusion of science fiction and horror than The Thing, John Carpenter‘s 1982 masterpiece of frostbitten fear and otherworldly invaders. It may have flopped hard at the box office when it first opened (a week following the release of E.T. – wow, that could not have been a pretty sight), but the film has gained a massive cult following over the years thanks to repeated cable airings and home video rentals and sales, and it has endured as an unbeatable genre classic.
Scream Factory, the offshoot of Shout! Factory devoted to releasing only the finest in sci-fi and horror cinema on Blu-ray and DVD, is preparing to give us fans of The Thing its definitive home video edition when it releases Carpenter’s timeless film on collector’s edition and deluxe limited edition Blu-ray this fall.
On New Year’s Eve, I met up with a pair of great friends and took in a showing of Quentin Tarantino‘s latest film, The Hateful Eight (check out our recent review by Adam Frazier), which I found to be a brazenly sinister and violent black comedy sneaked in on unsuspecting moviegoers beneath the sheepskin of a classic big sky western. Then we all made a short pilgrimage to a local tavern where we proceeded to ring in the new year and I learned that I knew all of the lyrics to Tom Jones’ “It’s Not Unusual.”
Love the film or hate its evil guts, one of the undisputed highlights of Hateful Eight was the original score composed by the legendary Ennio Morricone – his first score for a western in four decades! Tarantino has long wanted to team with the famed Italian music man responsible for some of the most iconic film scores of our time (Morricone even wrote an original song, “Ancora Qui,” for Tarantino’s previous film, Django Unchained), and the director’s latest provided “Il Maestro” a magnificent playground full of amoral characters talking and shooting each other to death with which to work. Unfortunately, Morricone was not able to create a full score due to a rushed schedule, compelling Tarantino to fill in a few gaps by utilizing selections from other scores composed by Morricone.
Hello Geeks and Ghouls, Famous Monster here. Well, it’s finally October and you know what that means? Breast Cancer Awareness 5Ks? Good guess. Pumpkin Spice Lattes? Delicious, but no. Halloween? YES. Horror movies? DOUBLE YES!
Welcome to 31 Days of Horror, where I’ll cover at least two noteworthy horror films a day for the entirety of the month. That’s 31 Days of Horror and 62+ scary movies perfect for a cold, dark October night. Be sure to visit Geeks of Doom every day this month for a double-shot of chills and thrills!
Today’s double-shot features monstrous man-eaters from outer space with John Carpenter‘s 1982 film, The Thing, and Douglas McKeown‘s low-budget alien flick, The Deadly Spawn.
First of all, before you ask, there was not a line of action figures made to coincide with the release of John Carpenter‘s classic sci-fi chiller The Thing back in the summer of 1982. It was too much of a disaster in the eyes of critics, audiences, and the executives at Universal Pictures at the time for one to even be considered. By then creating a toy line as part of the merchandising blitz for a major studio genre release was all part of the game. Planet of the Apes broke the mold, but Star Wars and Superman made toys a vital part of a studio blockbuster’s ancillary revenue. Even movies that made less money (and lost more money) and had a lesser cultural impact than The Thing got their own line of poseable figures, playsets, plastic vehicles, and guns that fired objects that weren’t supposed to be ingested but more often than not ended up lodged in some kid’s tracheo. I still recall seeing Judge Dredd figures hanging sadly off of sagging metal hooks in the toy section of my neighborhood Dollar General as late as 1998.
Avid movie poster collectors would appreciate this piece of news. Alamo Drafthouse will be hosting a release of The Thing as a part of their celebration for “Summer of 82” and to commemorate the release, Mondo will be reprinting the iconic poster that Drew Struzan did himself. Struzan was one of the actual artists who drew the poster for the John Carpenter classic, but the reprint will feature no taglines, to title, cast, or crew, just the striking image of a man with light emanating from his face.