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The Thing From Another World (1951) - Bluray

“Miss Nicholson . . . at 12:10am the hand became alive. . .”

If ever those words are uttered around me when staring at a dismembered arm, you bet my ass is headed for the door . . . even if it is the icy breath of the North Pole that awaits me just outside.  I’ll take my chances.  No vegetable man is going to get their gigantic hands on me.

Howard Hawks’ production of The Thing From Another World is an undisputable classic from the Cold War era of Hollywood.  It is also now on blu-ray thanks to the Warner Archive Collection.  If you ask me, the film, a strong cocktail of crisp black-and-white photography and great characters and witty zingers (thanks to longtime Hawks scribe, Charles Lederer), is a perfect nightcap for these cold months of winter.  Therefore, the timing of the release makes perfect sense to me.

"The movie, with strong production values and great atmosphere, continues to shine."

Whatever you wish to classify the film as – Science Fiction, Horror, or (gasp) Political Thriller – Hawks’ film, thanks in large part to the chemistry of the cast and the rapid-fire dialogue between Kenneth Tobey and Margaret Sheridan, is STILL a success, working as allegory for many, many things.  The white light.  The fear of becoming instantly atomized.  The communist threat.  It is all here inside a very taut and atmospheric film about the discovery of a flying saucer and the North Pole research team that is in harm’s way when the Martian, presumably the craft’s pilot, wakes up.

Starring Tobey as Capt. Patrick Hendry and Robert Cornthwaite as scientist Dr. Carrington, The Thing from Another World begins with the report of a UFO that this team of Air Force officers must go retrieve.  Thing is, the Air Force doesn’t deal with UFOs as, according to a latest report, they don’t exist and are merely jokes.

Well, when you see the team spread itself out over the measurements of the saucer (this is just one of the many classic scenes here) while it is still buried under the ice, there’s no laughter permitted.  At all. {googleads}

But it is what is there inside that should give these men the greatest pause: a big-headed humanoid creature (a pre-Gunsmoke James Arness) with, if we are to believe the men, its eyes still open.  Even frozen, this thing looks menacing.  With big hands and broad shoulders framing its menacing outline, there’s no stopping this alien if it should ever become unthawed.

And, for those raised on John Carpenter’s awesome remake The Thing, you know that, in fact, it WILL become unfrozen and go after the dogs first.  But all of Carpenter’s successes with his take on the tale of alien finds in the Arctic pale in comparison to what Hawks has done here.  The Thing from Another World is as good as science fiction on the silver screen gets, people.  Hands down.  Tight and economical, you have it all: great characters, great atmosphere, great effects, and a thoughtful meditation on the cruelty of man’s response. 

The Thing From Another World (1951) - Bluray

The movie, with strong production values and great atmosphere, continues to shine when it comes to thrillers produced during the time in America when paranoia and fear took over.  It is also undeniably directed by Hawkes himself, featuring many of his classic traits, regardless of who is credited as the official person in the director’s chair: Christian Nyby.  Tension-filled and ripe with rapid back-and-forth banter, the film serves as one hell of a rich glimpse into the paranoia that ripped through America at the height of the Cold War. 

Whatever you wish to classify the film as – Science Fiction, Horror, or (gasp) Political Thriller – Hawks’ film is an ongoing success, working as allegory for many, many things, and will STILL be a beacon to all those future filmmakers out there. 

Keep watching the skies.  They are coming.

5 beers


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The Thing From Another World (1951) - Bluray

MPAA Rating: Not rated.
87 mins
: Howard Hawkes
Charles Lederer
Kenneth Tobey, Margaret Sheridan, James Arness
: Horror
Howard Hawks' Astounding Movie.
Memorable Movie Quote: "There are no enemies in science, only phenomena to be studied."
Theatrical Distributor:
RKO Radio Pictures
Official Site:
Release Date:
November 27, 1951
DVD/Blu-ray Release Date:
November 30, 2018
Synopsis: "Arctic researchers discover a huge, frozen spaceling inside a crash-landed UFO, then fight for their lives after the murderous being (James Arness) emerges from icy captivity. Will other creatures soon follow?"


[tab title="Blu-ray Review"]

The Thing From Another World (1951) - Bluray


Blu-ray Details:

Home Video Distributor: Warner Bros.
Available on Blu-ray
- November 30, 2018
Screen Formats: 1.37:1
: English SDH
English: (Dolby Digital 1.0)
Discs: Blu-ray Disc; single disc
Region Encoding: Locked to Region A

Howard Hawks’ film arrives courtesy of the Warner Archive Collection. The 1.34:1 aspect ratio serves the original film’s release well. Gray levels are solid and whites offer a nice balance in this crisp presentation. Shadows hold their edges and there’s a new depth to the black and white images that is perfect. Even the electrocuting scene looks fabulous!  The sound is presented in a nice DTS-HD Master Audio 2.0 soundtrack.



  • None

Special Features:

A BRAND NEW REMASTER OF THE FILM should be reason enough to scoop this release up.  Two theatrical trailers round out the release.

  • Original Theatrical Trailer
  • Theatrical Re-Release Trailer


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The Thing From Another World (1951) - Bluray