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Carrie – Review

Carrie Review
Carrie Review
Carrie Review


Release Date: 29th November 2013
Director: Kimberly Peirce
Writer: Lawrence D. Cohen - Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa [Screenplay] - Stephen King [Novel]
Cast: Julianne Moore - Chloë Grace Moretz - Gabriella Wilde - Portia Doubleday - Alex Russell - Zoë Belkin



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Visual Effects

Total Score

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4 total ratings


Posted December 9, 2013 by

Carrie Review:

Upon watching shiny Hollywood remakes of your favourite classic horror films, one technique to avoid the inevitable disappointment, and often outrage, is to simply lower your expectations. The ol’ “laugh it off, you knew it would be pants” when inside you are likely a ball of heartbreak and indignation. Fully expecting to have to crack out this coping mechanism, I was pleasantly surprised by Kimberly Peirce’s (‘Boys Don’t Cry’, ‘Stop Loss’) reinvention of the Stephen King classic, Carrie.

With Chloë Grace Moretz cast in the titular role and Peirce at the helm, it was undeniable that this was one remake which posed real potential and I’m happy to say it did not disappoint. Originally a Stephen King novel published in 1974, famously brought to screens by Brian de Palma and Sissy Spacek two years later, Carrie revolves around a young girl relentlessly bullied both by her peers and her religious fanatic mother, her burgeoning telekinesis only making matters worse. After one particularly cruel school prank, remorseful student Sue attempts to make amends through inviting withdrawn Carrie to the event of the year, the school prom. Little does she, or Carrie, realise that other classmates are not so repentant, their venomous vindictiveness leading to disastrous and heart-breakingly tragic results.

Peirce’s inclusion of new elements to the story, along with her delving into the darker aspects of King’s novel than the de Palma original, both combine to make Carrie extremely watchable, rather than the tiresome ‘identical-except-for-more-nudity’ path which many recent horror remakes have taken. The introduction of the cyber bulling theme to the already malicious school harassment is something which will really resonate with today’s media-centric generation. Carrie and her zealous mother’s genuine, if extremely conflicted, affection for each other brings even more tension and sympathy to the fore. The opening scene of the film showing Carrie’s mother struggling to decide whether or not to kill her baby “born of sin” is instantaneously hard hitting and really sets the darker tone for this reincarnation of Carrie.

Whilst I had my doubts that the lovely Chloe Grace Moretz could convincingly play the ugly duckling card, she has once again proved herself to be brilliantly talented, presenting the perfect balance of doe-eyed recluse and telekinesis-wielding terror. Whilst Sissy Spacek’s 1976 portrayal of the character presented audiences with a wide eyed and bewildered girl, whose finale was born of shock and loss of control, Moretz’s Carrie actively experiments with her powers and ultimately unleashes them in a dark, frenzied yet utterly controlled manner. With added Jedi arm movements. What’s not to love?

So yes, Carrie is a remake. For once though, this doesn’t take away from the film. With fantastic performances from the cast, modernisation in all the right places, and still all our favourite moments lovingly recreated – the dirty pillow lumps still earning a snicker from the audience – Peirce’s Carrie ticks all the boxes. Whilst the artistic licenses are here and there, and will no doubt ruffle the feathers of fervent fans, I believe the added tones of darkness revolving around humanity, whether it be obsession, malice or the unknown – all merge to make this reincarnation of Carrie worth your time and a great introduction to the classic supernatural story for those new to the tragic tale.


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Screen Shot 2014-07-19 at 20.58.44

Becca Spackman
Freelance Contributor

One Comment


    You are right if you watch it with lower expectations it makes it enjoyable. I thought julienne Moore played an amazing role. I thought how Carrie killed Chris and Billy was good as she tourtured them as they did her, which I thought was better than the original.

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