Hello to all those faithfully reading and hopefully enjoying this effort to make even the worst horror movie more watcha... aw, screw that - I'm not that good. If a movie makes you cringe because yet another batch of unlikable teens that are pushing 30 are inching toward their deaths, having a party no one does anywhere ever, a paranormal movie is boring you to tears with unending pans of empty rooms, or thanks to CGI technology when people finally bite it, their blood squirts everywhere except on the victim, the ground, the people next to them... you're in good company and this is the right place for you.

Thursday, April 11, 2013


Carrie (1976)

If you are one the younger readers of my blog, first I thank you for being here. Now when it comes to movies, my opinion is that original is usually better. Yes I know that the improvement of special effects techniques, CGI can make things a lot, uh, glossier and having a classic filled with movie actors YOU know can be great. But to me, they lack a whole lot of style. 

Now I have watched remakes and liked them, classics like House On Haunted Hill was terrific in both versions, but movies like Fright Night, Evil Dead and Total Recall - remaking those with the 'modern' changes just seems like a type of blasphemy. I feel the same about Carrie. I've seen two other 'versions' (remake and sequel) and now there's yet another remake. I tell you right now nothing can top the angst, the terrific performances, and the tension and fear of the original Carrie. It was one of if not Brian De Palma's finest, and one of the best Stephen King adaptions around, even now.

It could be considered a social commentary of many different things: The horrible awkwardness of teenage life, the cruelty of the haves against the have-nots, the religious piety that can be twisted to whatever an individual chooses to believe - even if it's not what the Bible says, and oh yeah, be careful who you torture 'cause they might be telekinetic and they'll torch your ass.

This movie had so many good actors and actresses, no matter how many times I watch it, I recognize someone I hadn't noticed before - and subtleties I also hadn't appreciated. I remember the first time I watched it - late at night, in the dark in front of the TV. At the end I KNEW what was going to happen (although I hadn't read the book yet) but still was transfixed and jumped when Amy Irving's character gets grabbed. Still do. It's a powerful scene, not like today's 'oh yeah, it's the end of the movie here's your twist stupid' kind of thing.

If you've never gotten to see this it's the typical teenage story: Girl totally backward thanks to overly pious, psycho mom, teenagers cruel and inhuman toward said girl, popular girl feels bad and asks her boyfriend to take backward girl to prom, girl gets pigs blood all over her, girl goes into tantrum and kills off almost the entire school, then goes home and is stabbed by mom and in turn kills her before literally bringing the house down. You know, typical stuff.

Leave it to Stephen King to make bullying into art. See the movie just for all the subtleties that are missing in a lot of today's movies. And I wouldn't be me if I pointed out continuity errors but totally understandable: 

  • As in Ash in Evil Dead (the original), Carrie is splattered with pigs blood but since she has to be that way for countless scenes and takes, the blood is always moving. When she is first splattered, it's only mostly on one side. When she goes into her telekinetic 'fit' she is completely covered head to toe. Later when she walks home she is splattered, but much less. Although she takes a bath in bloody water, she becomes completely clean. 
  • Also Carrie is wearing her tiara as prom queen but when the bucket of blood falls on her and the crowd begins to laugh, the tiara is gone. The next scene from the top shows it back on her head, but subsequent scenes where she starts killing shows it is gone for good.
  • When Amy Irving walks to Carrie's 'grave' very slowly with the flowers you can clearly see two cars on the road driving backward - they played the scene backward to give her walk an eerie look.
  • The car Travolta is driving blows up from underneath (you can see part of the explosive charge come out from underneath the car and roll down the street) and the car rolls. As it rolls there is clearly no one inside but when it burns you can see the dummy inside the car - but only one.
  • That same car, a 1967 Chevelle, briefly changes into a 1967 Firebird (some say GTO but the taillights are from a Firebird) as it swerves around Carrie and then changes back to a Chevelle. 

There are supposed to be more but I couldn't tell so you'll have to judge for yourself. Mistakes and all this is still a superior movie and one of the best horror tales of this century.