Shy teenage girl. They are the butt of every joke. Until Stephen King wrote a book that made you look twice at the girl everyone mocks. In the ‘70s, it started its movie legacy. It continues this year, give that girl some fight back
Carrie is the coming of age story of a late bloomer with a psychotic mother. What gives this story an edge is the fact that as she becomes of age, she learns that she has supernatural power. Carrie has the power of telekinesis; she can move things and people with her mind. When a locker room prank goes wrong, Carrie is befriended by a teacher at a student who actually feels bad for tormenting Carrie. But no matter how many good people come in Carries life, they are no match for her zealot mother and the school’s mean girl.
Carrie is insanely creepy but, for once, viewers cheer for the murderer. The cast really pulls this together. Chloë Grace Moretz captures the painfully shy world of a blooming teenager but easily morphs as Carrie learns that she can use her powers. The innocent girl goes to powerful vengeance and then to sorrow and despair. The scariest aspect of the movie is probably Julianne Moore. Her version of Margaret is terrifying. She is clearly unhinged and Moore shows this in voice, body movement, even her gaze. Whenever she is on the screen, you shudder with Carrie.
When compared to the original, there are three big differences. One, the movie is not overtly sexual with full frontal nudity of teenagers. The new version takes the allegory on a less graphic and pornographic route. The second is that the second movie is more ethnically diverse. This is one of the biggest places that the original shows its age; everyone is white. The third difference is one of the biggest things that make this movie pop. Carrie’s powers are not limited to passive looks but instead they are forceful and clearly intended.
Moretz’s Carrie reaches out with her hand guiding her telepathic force to capture her opponents by the neck, scaring the mess out of her mother and moving her teacher to safety (another needed difference). As she curls her fingers and pipes burst, she is truly terrifying. Director Kimberly Pierce does no weird editing tricks (red screen, kaleidoscope images) and really focuses on the actress and the pain she clearly wants to inflict on her victims.
The movie clearly stands on its own. The filming is unnerving and the characters are truly scary. The story is still thought provoking to this day exploring the ideas of bullying. Viewers can see a lot of me in Carrie and this is what makes it such a timeless piece.
- Carrie (2013) (shipitproductions.com)
- Hilarious & Terrifying ‘Carrie’ Prank Stuns Coffee Shop Customers [Video] (contactmusic.com)
- Carrie (2013) (sleeperflicks.wordpress.com)
- Only Women Bleed, and Bleed and Bleed (Review of Carrie – 2013) (maryannemistretta.wordpress.com)
- Julianne Moore, Chloë Grace Moretz discuss making ‘Carrie’ in the digital age (csmonitor.com)
- Chloe Moretz felt vulnerable in ‘Carrie’ (contactmusic.com)