Until today, I had never seen the original Carrie. I've never read the book. Honestly, the movie never really interested me, no idea why. Considering it was directed by the same guy that brought us "Scarface", you'd think I would have at least given it a chance before now, but alas it took a remake's release, and a quick search on Netflix to bring me to watch the original. On the most part, I'm going to ignore the original, unless it feels like a good chance to draw parallels.
Now to disregard the previous sentence completely. The remake of Carrie, in my eyes, surpasses the original in just about every way. The remake manages to treat things with more taste, and tact then was apparent in the 1976 original. The movie cuts out pointless scenes, and replaces them with scenes that help to build the characters up, and make them feel a little more real.
Granted, part of the reality might have to do with the fact that they actually cast a high school age girl as the lead actress in a movie that revolves around a high school. Part of that might have something to do with the amazing acting chops of miss Chloe Grace Moretz, and part of that might have something to do with the film having a female director, and not a director who became known for Gangster films...
For those who are not familiar with the story, "Carrie" is the tale of a girl that is the daughter of an insane religious zealot, who after years of homeschooling is forced to attend a real school. The years of homeschooling combined with her mother's insanity, lead Carrie to be socially awkward, and an outcast. She never fully fits in with the crowd, and with the help of her mother's religious indoctrination in lieu of a proper education, Carrie is left without knowledge of certain female biological functions that serve as the spark that ignites the major conflict in this movie.
Honestly, I find the story, and Miss Moretz's portrayal of the character to be much more heart-wrenching than Sissy Spacek's version. There is a more empathic feel to the remake, we are led to see Carrie as a person, much more so than the original.
Call this movie what you want, call it a remake, a re-imagining, or an adaptation. All in all I think it was a successful flick, and I will be glad to add it to my BluRay collection in a few months.
RECOMMENDATION : If you are looking for a nice horror movie to get you through this month of horror, Carrie is a safe bet. While it skimps on horror mainstays, it makes up for it all with atmosphere, and some genuine characterization. If you are an enemy of all things remake, then this will likely leave that same sour taste in your mouth.
IS IT THEATER WORTHY: This is a tough one. I loved the chance to see this on the big screen, and I think it plays much better than Brian De Palma's version. The movie is however, not necessarily a theater event. I appreciate it, and think it plays well on the big screen, but being able to watch it in the comfort of your own home wouldn't be bad, either. All in all, if you have the money to spend, go for it. If not, you can always see it later.
FINAL THOUGHTS: I've watched two movies named Carrie today. Neither one was what I would consider bad. The original offered up more laughable moments, but also offered up more gratuitous nudity. The remake offered up more character development. In the end, this is the rare case where in my eyes, the remake is the superior film.
FINAL SCORE: 8.5 out of 10
Just a small addition here. According to the official website, this is a "re-imagining" as opposed to a remake... I firmly believe that either label is equally valid, though. Now, a trailer!