Some people will claim that they hate the real working world because it is cold and cruel. They don’t earn the rewards they deserve and life if too complicated. If they believe life now is hard, then High School must have been a cakewalk. Though high school for me was neutral (neither good or bad years), I can see why the most awkward of children would find the schoolyard to be the cruelest of places. They are trapped in a room where they know the need to study the facts to make it out, yet the more popular teenagers create a harder scenario; peer pressure.
Like the animal kingdom, life in high school is al about survival of the fittest: the strongest (or most popular) will outlast. The sad fact is that most popular tend to take advantage of their position by allowing their popularity to cloud thoughts of consideration and put down the lesser students in order to make themselves feel better. This kind of bullying has lead to plenty of other teens to break and act out in the worst of ways by becoming bullies themselves or even hurting others. Stephen King’s High School thriller comes to life again in the retelling of Carrie.
Carrie White (played by Chloë Grace Moretz) is a teenager in her senior year of High School who is first experiencing life outside of her house, after many years of being homeschooled. She also experiences her first step into womanhood when she gets her first period in the girl’s locker room, and not knowing what to do. When she pleads for help, Popular girl Chris (played by Portia Doubleday) leads a humiliation by having her friends throw tampons at her while recording poor Carrie on the shower floor. A teacher eventually discovers the ordeal, and Carrie’s mother Margret (played by Julianne Moore) takes her home, only to punish her.
Margret is overly religious and mentally unstable as she sends Carrie to her closet to pray. This is when Carrie starts to discover that she move things with her thoughts. She researches and sees that she may have telekinesis. Meanwhile, Chris, who is suspended and prevented from going to prom, decides to seek revenge on Carrie. The girl’s power grow stronger as other students Sue and her boyfriend Tommy, feel guilty about the earlier incident and wish to make it up. Tommy asks Carrie to prom and she say yes. She may have finally found a way into normal life, but the dance will become hell when the revenge seeks in.
Though I’m not spoiling anymore, there’s not much of a point as most people are aware of the massacre that Carrie pulls of once the pig’s blood spills all over her. Most people remember this from the iconic film of the seventies. Doing a remake of Carrie was a risky movie, and to be fair, director Kimberly Peirce (Boys Don’t Cry) does her best to tell her own version of the tragic case. In many ways, it follows the original classic well…perhaps too close
This new version almost follows the classic Carrie word-for-word. Except for a few modern day twists, it’s the same story. This is too bad, because I was really hoping that this could try a new direction (especially with a high feminist director in the chair). But even she identified that the older movie had already told the story in such a great way, that there wasn’t much more you could bring to it. What is new here is a bigger emphasis on Carrie’s telekinetic powers. Unfortunately, much of the effects (bed hovering and mirror cracking) are done with computer animation, which looks very distracting. I liked the more subtle approach of the other Carrie (though I thought that the prom bloodbath was fun to see again).
Speaking of whom, will give credit for actually casting a high school aged girl in the lead. Chloë tries very hard, looking very uncomfortable in her own skin. She has that, but what she doesn’t have is the more terrifying side that Sissy Spacek was able to do better. Julianne Moore does her best, looking even worse and insane then any of her other roles, but all I saw was her trying to play this part. That’s the problem here, play. Everyone a part of this project is here to play Carrie, while it being painfully obvious that it could have never matched the classic.
I’ll give this three bucket’s of blood out of five. Almost as pointless as the Gus Van Sant Psycho remake, I would advise to simply rent the 1976 film if your looking for a more terrifying night of blood and tragedy.