Release Date: October 18, 2013
Cast: Chloë Grace Moretz, Julianne Moore
Director: Kimberly Peirce
Studio: Misher Films
Distributor: MGM, Screen Gems
Genre(s): Horror, Thriller, Supernatural
Based On Carrie by Stephen King
So honestly, I liked Carrie. I mean, it wasn’t a huge improvement on the original, but you can’t really improve on the original. There are some updates, like cell phones, and some minor subtractions, but the story’s plot gets across just as easily as it did before. There are no shocks or jumps that you don’t expect. The only really big difference is the scene at prom.
While the kids at prom in the original aren’t making fun of her after she gets blood dumped on her, the 2013 version does have the crowd laughing after they put on the video of Carrie getting her period for the first time. Tommy dies in this one, assumedly from the heavy pail impaling into his head. Both scenes are significant in my opinion. The first, justifies Carrie’s revenge in my opinion.
The kids at her school are dicks to her and seeing them get just what they deserve for bullying a helpless girl is pretty satisfying. Plus Tommy’s death is enough to push Carrie overboard. Miss Collins surviving the fire is great too, she survives because she spends the movie being a good person to Carrie. There’s a lesson, and she’s not the villain. I many ways, it’s not really even a horror movie.
A horror movie is something that you get horrified at. And while the image of kids being burned alive and electrocuted is pretty horrific, in the realm of movies, it is artistic karma (does that make me sound crazy)?
Moretz and Moore are great in this. Moore kills it as Margaret White, all bible thumping and narcissistically abusive, while still trying be her opinion of the “perfect mother”. Margaret’s story is altered from the book, as it seems she was never raped, and instead in some kind of frenzy she and her husband had sex and produced Carrie as a result. But it was still an act that she deems as evil. We never find out what happens to her father, whether he dies (like in the book) or leaves Margaret (like in the 1967 movie), but making her a victim of marital rape made me sympathetic to Margaret. Without it, she’s just a psychopathic mother.
Moretz plays a perfect Carrie, in my opinion better that Spacek or at the very least equal. She’s got the game down, able to both play a likable but shy Carrie as well as a vengeful blood thirsty one. She’s got the charm and charisma that naturally draws the audience on to her side. A lot of the choices made were subtle, but it changed my opinion of Carrie as a character. Both films drastically stepped outside of King’s original image for Carrie, and it makes a difference in the filming. But compared to the old film, it changed the tone.
Was it successful? Apart from feeling differently afterwards, I liked it. This version left me feeling better about the movie than I did after the older version. It hasn’t made any impact with the critics, but personally, it’s good. It’s worth a watch.
Final Thoughts: While not a bad movie Carrie is almost too reminiscent of the original. For those who aren’t obsessed with the original being the better movie, it’ll be a nice little reboot, with a modern cast and a modern Carrie.