Carrie 2013: A valiant effort that missed the mark

The most recent retelling of Stephen King’s “Carrie” lacks the depth and character development of the original, but tries to satisfy with senseless violence and carnage.

Released Oct.18,2013 this is the third adaptation of the “Carrie” franchise. The original, directed by Brian De Palma, was released in 1976 while a sequel, “The Rage: Carrie 2” was released in 1999 and directed by Katt Shea. Apparently the subject matter of an ostracized teenage girl annihilating her classmates with telekinetic powers is so riveting to audiences that it warranted not one, but two mediocre follow ups.

This re-imagining of the original isn’t a total waste of time, though. Chloe Grace Moretz shines as the title character Carrie White, and Julianne Moore captures her role as Margaret White with a very convincing performance of a slightly psychotic, single-minded, Christian conservative mother who both loves and loathes her daughter.

The effects in the movie’s chaotic finale were worth the trip, as audiences are exposed to the telekinetic fury of Carrie and the repercussions that can come with pushing someone to the breaking point.The remainder of the movie was, sadly, not worth the trip.

The retelling of the Carrie story is one that has been driven into the ground, and I find myself wondering why they bothered to visit this story-line again. I’ve seen all of the Carrie movies, and while the newest addition is far better than “The Rage” was, it falls short in comparison to the original.

I found myself loathing the characters who found so much pleasure in torturing poor Carrie, but not because their portrayal of the characters was so on point, but because their acting was so bad. More than once during the film’s 100 minute running time, I was amazed at the overall lack of talent in the film’s supporting ranks. Did directorial staff and producers hope to distract audiences from the lack of depth by casting no-name wannabes from a Hollister advertisement adjacent to the amazing A-list actors?

This may be the only chance younger audiences get to experience Stephen King’s work, but I would advise skipping this modernixed version to watch the original instead. The acting is better and the overall development of supporting and primary characters is better. The effects won’t compare, obviously, but it’s a sacrifice worth making. Sadly, this film is not worth seeing in theaters, unless you can get someone else to pay for the ticket that is.