If anybody reading this knows our friend Tippy, tell him we finally watched The Thing. In the 80's, he offered to show us this on tape, but promised to fast forward straight to the gross stuff. We declined his kind offer, but he went right ahead. It didn't take much fast forwarding to get to the gross stuff. I think we finally got him to stop the tape, or maybe we fainted.
We have been afraid to look at it since. But since we've become such big John Carpenter fans (They Live, Ghosts of Mars, etc) we finally decided to go for it. Good choice.
The story is based on a hoary old John W. Campbell short, "Who Goes There?", and to a lesser degree, Howard Hawks' 1951 The Thing from Another World. A dog comes running into an isolated Antarctic research post, being chased by some Norwegians in a helicopter. The copter crashes and the dog turns out to be... OK, I'll skip the spoilers. But there are blood and guts, canine, human, and inhuman.
The movie bears a strong resemblance to Alien: the funky, lazy slacker crew, the tension, and the disgusting special effects. It also seems to have a stronger script, a bigger budget and tighter production than a lot of his films. In fact, it might be his masterpiece. (But I think I still like They Live better.)
Anyway, thanks Tippy. Sorry we were such wimps.