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Do we finally have an answer to the ending of The Thing?

October 4th, 2016 by Dave Bowling Comments

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After only 34 years, it seems that the ending to John Carpenter’s The Thing might actually have an explanation. If you look hard enough. With an electron microscope.

In a commentary put together for the movie’s super-hi-def 2K Blu-Ray release next week, cinematographer Dean Cundey reveals a seemingly insignificant detail that could potentially put to bed once and for all whether the two survivors were indeed alien replacements at the end of the film. Cundey – also a veteran of films such as Jurassic Park, Apollo 13 and Carpenter’s own Big Trouble in Little China – is interviewed by Rob Galluzo on the commentary. Galluzo has this to say:

Early on in the commentary track, I asked Cundey if he and John discussed doing a subtle lighting trick to imply who might be “the thing.” He waited until the blood scene to answer my question. As the scene began, he explained, ‘So we were looking for some kind of a subtle way, to say which one of these (men) might be human. You’ll notice there’s always an eye light, we call it, a little gleam in the eye of the actor. It gives life.’

So, the answer is that there’s a reflected light in the eye of anyone who isn’t assimilated. A glint, if you like. But trying to see it on a TV, even one with 2K capability, is going to be problematic at best. Some people have noted that at the end, with Childs and MacReady facing a freezing death, Childs seems to have something to hide. Maybe the best thing to do would be to re-release it for IMAX, that way we’ll know for certain.

Just an idea. C’mon John, you know you want to…

The Thing – Collector’s Edition is released on 11 October 2016.

Source: Io9

Dave was born at an early age to parents of both sexes. He has been a self-confessed geek for as long as he can remember, having been raised through the 80s on a steady diet of Doctor Who, Star Trek, Red Dwarf and (sigh) Knight Rider. Throw the usual assortment of Saturday morning cartoons into the mix and we have something quite exceptional: someone with an encyclopaedic knowledge of utter tosh; a love of giant robots and spaceships fighting; and the strange desire to leap tall buildings in a single bound while wearing his underpants over his trousers. The death ray is currently in the works and one day you shall all bow to him, his giant space station and fleet of funky orange space shuttles...