CARRIE (2013) Reviews and overview

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Carrie is a 2013 American supernatural horror film, a remake of the 1976 film of the same name, and the third adaption of Stephen King’s 1974 novel of the same name. It was directed by Kimberly Peirce from a screenplay by Lawrence D. Cohen (Carrie, 1976) and Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa, who previously adapted King’s work The Stand into a comic book in 2008 and directed The Town That Dreaded Sundown in 2014.

Chloë Grace Moretz stars as the titular Carrie White, and Julianne Moore as Carrie’s mother, Margaret White, alongside Judy Greer, Portia Doubleday and Ansel Elgort. The music score was composed by Marco Beltrami, best known for his work for horror films such as Mimic (1997), The Faculty (1998), Resident Evil (2002), Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark (2011) and The Woman in Black (2012).

With a reported budget of $30 million, Carrie did not perform as well as expected at the box office taking $85 million.

A Blu-ray + DVD + Digital Copy was released on January 14, 2014. Special features are:

Feature Film with Alternate Ending (Blu-ray only – see below)
Deleted/Extended Scenes with Commentary by Director Kimberly Peirce (Blu-ray only)
Commentary by Director Kimberly Peirce (Blu-ray only)
The Power of Telekinesis (Blu-ray only)
“Bringing Back Carrie” Featurette
Telekinetic Coffee Shop Surprise
Theatrical Trailer
Lenticular package


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The quiet suburb of Chamberlain, Maine is home to the deeply religious and conservative Margaret White and her daughter Carrie. She is a sweet but meek outcast whom Margaret has sheltered from society.

Gym teacher Miss Desjardin tries in vain to protect Carrie from local mean girls led by the popular and haughty Chris Hargenson, but only Chris’ best friend, Sue Snell, regrets their actions. In an effort to make amends, Sue asks her boyfriend, high school heartthrob Tommy Ross, to take Carrie to the prom. After a cruel prank by her peers at the dance, Carrie is pushed to the limit and unleashes telekinetic havoc…



“Other tweaks are less successful: Carrie’s penchant for Vadering her tormentors; Chris 2.0 being upgraded from petty bully to cold-blooded psycho (making the film far less easy to identify with); and a horribly lame, tame coda. Of course, matching De Palma’s infamous hand-from-the-grave sting was never an option – not least because it was the genre’s original tag-on shock – but this half-hearted jump only draws attention to another pimple on the new Carrie: it’s just not scary” Total Film

“the high school element works far better than any of the horror; marking out class division and cliques with Carrie making her own dress for prom is reminiscent of Pretty in Pink. Any sympathy with this Carrie is lost, however, when she  takes control of her power and chooses to wreak havoc only on those she feels have wronged her. While it may be unfair to compare this reboot it to De Palma’s film … the finale is now poised as vindictive and calculated revenge rather than a loss of control.” MovieScope

“Eschewing an amped-up approach to visualizing the violence and its threat (as well as the eroticization of the showering girls), Peirce grounds the movie in a sympathetic portrait of Carrie’s travails, turning it into a study of a tormented outsider akin to her galvanizing debut feature Boys Don’t Cry. As there, Peirce works well with her lead actress, and Moretz confronts the unenviable task of following up Sissy Spacek’s iconic portrayal with aplomb and commitment.” Fangoria

“While she cleverly frames each event as an adolescent coming-of-age milestone, Peirce can’t resist the pressure to indulge in cheesy horror movie gimmicks like corny shocks and an overstated musical score. This exaggerates the terror of each situation, which makes the film feel nightmarishly gothic, especially with the overuse of digital trickery. But it also puts Carrie’s supernatural lashing out into perspective as a teen’s defence mechanism against cruel girls, stupid boys and out-of-touch parents.” Contactmusic

” …offers virtually nothing that wasn’t done better by director Brian De Palma’s 1976 film. That movie oozed a grand Guignol style that’s tough for any director to imitate. Peirce makes hers a much more straightforward film, but by doing so also makes it pretty boring, especially for anyone that’s seen the original.” JoBlo


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” … doesn’t bring much new to the table in a thematic sense — it’s still the story of a lonely female outcast with weird powers and an insane mother who gets pushed too far by horrible bullies — but what the new Carrie lacks in original ideas, it makes up for in fine performances, a calm but quick editorial style, and some subtle, clever nuances that indicate what a fine filmmaker Peirce (Boys Don’t Cry) actually is.” FEARnet

“Cohen and Aguirre-Sacasa’s script also lacks the psychologically weighty and moody context of the original film and even King’s novel, to a certain degree. They’re clearly aiming more for shocks and frights, but this film is sadly lacking in both departments.” Big Shiny Robot

” …while Carrie isn’t the second coming of a masterpiece it’s still a well-made film with superb acting that is able to encapsulate what makes the original so special, even if it does often feel like one giant uninspired retread.” What Culture!

“A little enthusiasm would have gone a long way into making this production something worth watching, but even the actors seem as bored. Even Carrie’s prom night fury is turned into a CG-wonderland where only a destructive car wreck manages to stand out while the rest looks like a bunch of sparks and people being tugged by wires every which way.” Rope of Silicon

“Moore and Judy Greer are standouts and, while I was initially concerned that Chloe Moretz was too poised and confident to inhabit the titular role, she manages to play insecurity nicely. The film’s secret weapon, however, is Portia Doubleday as Chris Hargensen. She is absolutely on fire here, villainous and evil but palpably vulnerable.” Bloody Disgusting

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