Stephen King’s Carrie gets a new life in this remake starring Chloë Grace Moretz as a teenager who discovers that she has the extraordinary ability to move objects with the power of her mind, which eventually leads to mayhem and horror at her high-school prom. Kimberly Peirce (Boys Don’t Cry) directs, and Julianne Moore co-stars as Carrie’s overbearing mother. (synopsis from Fandango)
The remake of Carrie released today, and I have to say that I was more than a little surprised and entertained. Why is that? Let’s take a look.
[SPOILERS] The start of the movie almost knocked me out of it. First and foremost thing about me, I’m a father. The whole scene with Margaret White almost killing newborn Carrie with shears was almost too much to watch. As luck would have it, Margaret stops the shears short and picks up Carrie, mothering her.
So how, I can get back into the movie and enjoy it without cringing. This remake is true to the original source material. We start out with Carrie in high school, being tormented by her classmates. The film does a great job of capturing the cruelty and inhumanity these teens show one of their own who is different form them. This is very similar to the 1976 film.
Julianne Moore portrays Margaret White effectively and quite insanely. Watching her inflict pain on herself and mentally on Carrie was truly cringe worthy and disturbing. I would almost go to say that her performance far exceeds what we saw in the original film. Her visage helped convey her fanaticism and confusion. She was amazing to see.
Chloë Grace Moretz was also a surprise. Her version of Carrie White was just as weak and strong as Sissy Spaceks original version. The main difference being the end. Moretz’s version of the power drunk, vengeance filled Carrie was amazing. It felt so much more personal as she lashed out at those who hurt her. Also, her dealings with her mother were powerful. A young woman who is growing up and pushing against the rules that have stifled her finds the power to not only challenge, but push the boundaries that her mother’s love has created.
The culmination of the film is the sequence that everyone who knows the original film expects it to be. When the bucket of pig’s blood falls upon Carrie and the bucket injuries/kills her prom date, Carrie unleashes her power to punish all of those in front of her. The main difference between the 1976 and 2013 versions is that the 2013 showed a little bit more mercy. There were more survivors among the classmates, but the ones who did die died in extremely violent and painful manners. Burning to death, trampled by fleeing teens, smashed into windows, crushed by closing bleacher stands,e tc. were all methods that ended the lives of some of the most vicious or mean spirited teens. Unfortunately, some innocent ones were killed as well.
When Chris, the girl who instigated the blood prank, and her boyfriend meet the vengeful Carrie, they are smashed to bits inside the boyfriends car. Carrie’s powers have grown to the point where she is basically able to levitate the car and throw it into the gas tanks at a fill station. Boom, boom.
I was surprised by how faithful this movie was to the original and also how much I enjoyed it. It was different enough (an increased focus on Carrie’s powers plus more visible special effects when it comes to Carrie’s physical reactions to her power being used) that I was able to separate the two movies and enjoy this one on its own. I’m going to rate this an 8 out of 10. It was a solid film that you all should check out.
I’m pretty shocked that I enjoyed the movie this much. Typically, I am not the biggest fan of remakes or reboots, but this was done very effectively. I highly recommend watching it.
If you did see it, what did you think?
You can check out the trailer below. See if it is of interest to you!