Oh no – not another remake – maybe this one will be better than some of the recent tripe. Guess what? It isn’t. While not terrible, it lacks the most important element of the story. Feeling.
Carrie (2013) is the reimagining of Brian De Palma’s horror “classic” Carrie, originally screened in 1976 which in turn was taken from Stephen King’s hit novel of the same name, released in 1974. The film is directed by Kimberly Peirce with a screenplay by Lawrence D. Cohen and Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa and is a supernatural horror story about a psychologically scarred and victimised young teen who gets pushed too far at the same time as discovering she has telekinetic powers. Word of advice for you – don’t bully hormonal teenagers who have telekinetic abilities. It wont end well for you.
The whole film nearly follows the same path as the original while trying to slightly modernise by adding little bits like the uploading of the “plug it up” scene onto the internet to add to Carrie’s embarrassment. That, along with the modern special effects and glossy screen definition, works fine and does a decent job of visually bringing the story to a modern audience. There are a few new additions such as a promising opening scene showing Carrie’s birth and a different take on the after credit ending but not much else that strays from the original film path.
The first portion of the film focuses on trying to capture audience sympathy and pity for Chloe Grace Moretz’ Carrie by showing the terrible experiences she suffers at the hands of the extremely cruel school bullies and the damage being caused by her mother’s extreme religious views although they are more insane then in line with any religion I know of. Carrie’s mother, Julianne Moore, pulls off the nutjob role brilliantly and you can’t help despising her for the way she treats her daughter.
The film continues by telling the story of how a sympathiser eventually takes Carrie to the prom, much to her mother’s despair, only to see her humiliated further and for her to exact revenge with the help of her powers.
Sounds promising so far right? Well other than the admirable performance by Chloe Grace Moretz, the positives stop there.
The steep curve to Carrie’s powers in this film is ridiculous and ruins any element of suspense and surprise over the final bloodbath. Within half an hour of this film she is able to levitate people, beds and even melt steel locks. The end scene, if you didn’t already know it was coming is predictable because Carrie is like one of the X-Men by half way through the film.
And speaking of Carrie – despite the best efforts of the actress, she really needed some help from her make-up department. She is a good looking girl and to make here the biggest outcast at a school, they put a cardigan on her and slightly curl her hair. Take a look at the picture below and tell me if this looks like the girl all the boys find disgusting.
They could maybe have given her a wart or something, instead she looks like she should be head of the school bullies and is better looking than all of the main female bullies. Small things like this make it hard to believe the story. There is some suspect footage along the way too – namely a scene showing the bucket of blood fall on Carrie where the camera shows the blood pour out of the bucket from around seven different angles. Not the blood hitting Carrie, just it pouring out of the bucket! It really isn’t the most important part of the film so why we are subjected to watching a bucket spill multiple times from different angles confused me massively. Yet another complaint is the extremely dull and wooden performances from many of the other actors, especially from Carrie’s eventual prom date, Tommy (Ansel Elgort), who at no point seems in the slightest bit interested in Carrie at all. The film feels rushed as well and clocks in at just over 90 mins which is short for building a story based on feeling.
Generally I don’t mind the idea retelling of films from the past to reach a new audience but if you are going to just try to make an almost straight copy, it needs to be better than this. For people who will never see the original, it dilutes its reputation so out of respect they should stop making them or try harder.
It is only fair that this version of Carrie be judged against it’s predecessors and unfortunately, but not unexpectedly, it pales considerably. It is a pointless remake as it expands and improves on absolutely nothing. If you have never seen Carrie, it is just an average modern horror flick with typically little horror. If you have seen Carrie, it is a poor job that lacks feeling and suspense saved only by the title charcter and her mother’s performance.
Carrie - Remake