Posted: December 17, 2002
I have just finished watching the remake of Carrie and I must say that I was surprised. When I first heard about it I felt that it was rather unnecessary to do a remake of one of the better King movies.
Also before I saw it I heard a lot of bad things about it. It was supposed to be to long, the special effects wasn't any good and so on. So it's safe to say that I really didn't have to high expectations about it when I saw it.
So when I saw it I was actually pleasantly surprised of what I saw. Angela Bettis is really good as Carrie. She really looks tormented when the other kids tease here and she is believable as the girl who no one likes. Patricia Clarkson is also a good choice for Carries crazy mother. Her portrayal of Carries mother isn't crazy in the same physical way as in Brian DePalma's version. Here Margaret is calmer but still very intimidating.
Most of the time this remake is rather similar to the original movie. The biggest exception is that it has gotten a more modern feel. Carrie is searching the Internet for example. Another difference is the wrap-around story. Here we get to be present at a police interrogation with some of the survivor from the prom. This is a way of driving the story along without having to show everything. Actually it feels rather effective. This way the remake can have much more of the story in it even though it's not that much longer (it's a little more then 2 hours without the commercials.
The wrap-around story is also used to give the viewer a sense of what's to come. Here events are hinted and then we get to see how it came about and what happened. It's a rather effective way to tell a story. In fact, King uses it frequently himself.
Unfortunately not all is good with this remake. Most of the characters are portrayed well but not all. Jesse Cadotte who plays Billy Nolan I could have done without. He is totally over the top and not the least believable.
Another thing that I'm a bit skeptic to is that Carrie is getting too tough in this version. Here she, when she finds out she has special powers, put her mother in place with an attitude that feels a bit wrong. Her mother has controlled Carrie for her entire life and I can't imagine that you change that in a day or two…
Another thing that I don't like is that Carrie seams to get amnesia some of the times when she uses her powers and others she remembers everything perfect. That feels rather unnecessary. Carrie is burning down the school because she is angry and I not it seams like it was an accident???
Earlier I mentioned the special effects and that they weren't supposed to be that good. Well, most of them are good. There are some however that looks rather cheesy. I'm particularly thinking of some that occur when Carrie is walking home after the prom…
In whole this remake is a good one. Its biggest problem is that it's supposed to serve as a backdoor pilot for a potential series. These cause the creators to come up with an ending where Carrie survives and I'm not sure I buy that. I understand that if there is to be an ongoing series about Carrie she has to be alive but the way they did it isn't believable. I won't reveal what happens but if you have seen it you know what I'm talking about. I don't think a person can live through that and still have all here brain cells left, do you?
Lilja's final words about Carrie (remake)
OK, so should you watch this remake of Carrie? Well I think you should and if there is a series done from it I think you should see that one as well. Not because it will have anything to do with Stephen King (after all, Carrie didn't live in his version) but because it will be interesting to see what they will do with it. My guess is that it will be something like this. The main character is hunted by the government and has to be on the run to avoid being caught. She will then pass through city after city using her power, causing trouble and having to leave in a hurry to avoid being caught. Wait, I just remembered that this show already exists and it's called The Incredible Hulk.
All photos are copyrighted byul Michaud and used here with permission.