Let’s cut right to the chase: it’s 57 minutes, 12 seconds until “Breasts, mama. Breasts. You have them, and every woman has them.” In other words, it’s 57 minutes, 12 seconds until Chloe Moretz says the word “breasts”. This is the moment that this movie was made for, yet when it finally comes, we find ourselves indifferent and unmoved. We just want the movie to be over with already. I don’t get it, folks. How do you manage to make Chloe Moretz talking about her breasts boring? Is this movie a CIA psyop or something? Am I going to go shoot a senator the next time I hear the word “bazinga”? Movies like this just make me re-evaluate my life all over again.
Anyway. Yes, America: they remade Carrie. I guess they already had some lame “sequel” back in the late 90s / early 00s, when I was in high school and was somehow even more lame and ridiculous than I am today. As far as I can remember, I never watched it, but I suppose its existence mitigates the existence of this remake slightly. Much like with Robocop 3, the character has already been violated, so the appearance of the obligatory modern remake doesn’t exactly send normal people into hysterical rage.
I think I might not be normal, though. I know, it’s shocking, but there it is.
So here we are, watching a remake of Brian De Palma’s Carrie with all of the creepiness smoothed out of it. That’s good, because it’s not like Carrie was supposed to be a horror film or anything. Carrie isn’t even my favorite De Palma film, and I haven’t watched it in awhile, but it’s hard to forget that opening sequence where De Palma’s camera roams about a girl’s locker room, playing up the voyeuristic aspects of the scene before pulling the rug out from under the audience and turning things ugly. Thankfully, all such artistic touches are ironed out of the remake, and we get to see the film the way Margaret Thatcher would have wanted. Finally, a film about a telekinetic who goes on a murderous rampage without any titty shots!
We’ve got it all, here: embarrassing white people music on the soundtrack, direction that always chooses to play it safe rather than make anybody uncomfortable, lame CGI effects that make you start recomputing normal vectors in your head, and callbacks to the original film that, in all honesty, should have been accompanied by on-screen text along the lines of, “Hey! Remember when this happened? LOL!” You know, they could have just started flashing it on the screen with a dinging sound effect like the “PUT ON YOUR 3D GLASSES” bit in Machete Kills. Just hit me full on the mouth with your bullshit, guys. I can’t get enough.
So yeah, Carrie is made fun of all the time, her mom is overly religious and probably insane, Carrie has telekinetic powers, she goes to the prom, pig’s blood is dropped on her, she spazzes out and flips the table with her mind, The End. I know, guys. I saw the movie already. So why did you make this new one again? Are you unaware of the fact that they invented VHS, then DVDs, then Blu-Rays, then NetFlix streaming or whatever? They even had Betamax and LaserDisc and VCDs and some other things mixed in there. You know, all possible ways to watch the original Carrie. Do you think I’m stupid or something? Do you think I’m unable to watch the original movie without your help? Then why did you create this?
The answer, as always, is because they can, but they don’t have the balls to make a proper remake like Carpenter’s The Thing or Cronenberg’s The Fly or Herzog’s Bad Lieutenant or whatever. They don’t have anything to add to the discussion. They don’t have a new take on the material. So let’s just have lame CGI mirror shards dancing in the bathroom sink because telekinesis! Really, guys, it’s brilliant. Great job.
I keep dancing around my main point, though. So I’m just going to say it: Chloe Moretz is too hot to play Carrie White. Yeah, I know, she’s 16 or whatever. But there’s no age of consent. In my mind.
So it’s hard to take this whole movie seriously. She does a good job playing the character, but the entire movie lacks any real sort of nastiness to it. It plays like a typical high school revenge film, not a slow burn horror flick. I wasn’t frightened or uneasy at any point while I watched this movie. It was just a sequence of events that happened. At the end, Carrie’s graffiti-laden tombstone cracks while some lame alt-rock music blares on the soundtrack and they cut to the credits. It was like one of those post-Scream late 90s high school horror flicks or something. I’m honestly not sure if this movie was meant to be a joke or not.
Really, nothing encapsulates the whole “hip and with it” contemporary high school vibe like The Facebook Scene. Sure, the presence of a smart phone being taken out during the opening tampon assault is the first instance of updating, but the subsequent creation of a fake Carrie White profile is truly ridiculous. Oh, the indignity of a girl with no home internet access getting a fake profile of herself made. Favorite Film? Bloodsport. Favorite Drink? Bloody Mary. You read that right, folks: Characters in this film chuckle after mentioning the immortal classic Bloodsport. This country truly is doomed.
Carrie also watches YouTube videos of telekinesis at the school library. Yes, folks, in the new Carrie, she learns that there are people out there just like her! I guess it’s better than having her browse Jezebel or something, but it kind of takes away from her alienation a bit. I mean, is the movie implying that she learns and hones her telekinesis powers through YouTube? Is she logging in to some phpBB forum somewhere and absorbing all the privilege checking discussion? Really, this is just too much to think about. Sometimes less is more, guys.
Case in point: The CGI. Now, I know, there’s no such thing as too much CGI. CGI explosions are fucking awesome, bro! Sure, it’s cheaper to just levitate books with wires, and maybe remove them digitally if necessary, but it doesn’t look nearly as tacky and retarded as full computer models of levitating books. Similarly, Carrie’s climactic hissy fit needs to look like something out of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. Again, it’s not like this is supposed to be a horror film or anything.
And while we’re on the topic: do we really need 3 instant replays of the pig’s blood drop? Is this an episode of Ninja Warrior or something? What the fuck is going on?
So we get to the climax, and Carrie is fucking pissed. I would be too if I just starred in this movie for the last hour or so. As expected, it is completely weak compared to the climax of the original, or to the climax of something like Inglourious Basterds. After trashing the prom with as much CGI as her telekinetic mind can manifest, she stalks the main bad girl and her boyfriend along the street as they attempt to make a getaway in his car. Opening her mouth in a bizarre fashion, she causes a CGI earthquake crack to travel along the asphalt and stop the car. Perturbed, the boyfriend swings the car around and, at the behest of the bad girl, floors it in an attempt to run Carrie down.
Here’s where it gets interesting.
Carrie stops the car instantly, sending the boyfriend’s face into the steering wheel. He dies on impact. The bad girl starts punching the gas, but Carrie has the car levitating in the air, slowly angling it downwards so that it points at a nearby gas station pump. The bad girl stops and locks eyes with Carrie. The camera angle switches back and forth between their faces. It’s fucking on. Finally, the bad girl punches the gas one more time, Carrie steps away, and as the car revs, it flies forward through the air, collides with the gas pump, and shortly thereafter explodes.
So, my question is: When Carrie “lets go” of the car with her mind, why does it fly forward like an airplane instead of dropping to the ground first? Are they aware that the tires are not in contact with the ground? Did anyone involved with this film ever take a physics class? This is still upsetting me three days later. It’s even more troubling than those damned mirror shards in the sink. How does this stuff end up on film?
Unless Carrie threw the car at the gas pump with her mind. But then, why would she wait for the girl to hit the gas pedal? Why not just throw it at the gas pump whenever? I don’t understand.
Anyway, they remade Carrie, and I watched it. This is my life.