The Thing (1951)

It’s a universal assumption by now that this bouncy, matter-of-fact sci-fi thriller was actually directed by producer Howard Hawks. This accounts for the snappy patter and all-business plot stuff, but the “trapped in the Arctic with an alien” scenario comes from veteran genre scribe John W. Campbell Jr.’s story “Who Goes There?” Tight and suspenseful as hell; The Thing was remade in 1982 to significantly more garish effect.

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