Quentin Tarantino Says This Film Is One of The Only Ones To Ever Scare Him


When Quentin Tarantino appeared on Stephen Colbert’s The Late Show this week to promote the novel adaptation his 2019 film Once Upon a Time in Hollywood, the director spoke about his love for John Carpenter’s horror classic The Thing.

During the interview, Tarantino lauded The Thing for its incredible practical effects, saying that it’s one of the greatest films of all time and that it was one of the only movies to genuinely scare him.

“I was scared and it made me want to put it under a microscope about why I was actually frightened during that movie,” Tarantino said. “…These men are trapped in this situation in this arctic research center, and one or more of them are possibly this Thing that’s going to devour all of them. And no one knows if you are the guy I’ve known forever or you are a Thing. And the movie makes the paranoia of that so palpable, so real, it’s almost like another character in the movie. The sheer paranoia of it. They’re trapped in the Antarctic, in this shelter, and so the paranoia is bouncing off of the four walls… until it has nowhere to go except through the fourth wall into the audience. I started feeling exactly like they felt.”

The Thing is broadly considered to be one of John Carpenter’s greatest works, which is saying something for an auteur responsible for such indelible works as Halloween, Big Trouble in Little China, and Escape from New York. It’s clear from Tarantino’s work on films like Reservoir Dogs and The Hateful Eight that The Thing has been a major influence on his work.

Tarantino’s new novel adaptation of Once Upon a Time in Hollywood was released in June and is now available everywhere books are sold.