Killing Frenzy

There is an off-chance the youngest who watched this Carrie remake didn’t know how the inevitable plays out – that Carrie (Chloe Grace Moretz) suffers an unfathomable indignity on prom night. Even if a viewer doesn’t, the film suggests as such. Upon learning she and her date were elected king and queen, the camera zooms in dramatically, motion slows, and ominous music plays.

It’s a problem for remakes like this, where certain elements of a story are so permanently ingrained in pop culture/social consciousness, there’s a drive to elevate those moments. So Carrie does, and what results is a heavily exaggerated, visual effects-driven climax that’s less horror than digital melee.

This generation having their own Carrie adaptation is not only logical, the timing was correct

That’s a shame too. Carrie projects better nuance than the 1976 original. Julianne Moore is fantastic, and her reasons for protecting her daughter are more direct because standards changed. The “nice” kids who try to help Carrie come across as authentic in this era of online bullying, although the villains project near demonic spite that’s less convincing.

A common question about remakes is why anyone bothers (see: Wonka). Carrie has reasons to exist. School social structures changed since the ‘70s. Online harassment became a thing. Religious fundamentalism continues to grip families. This generation having their own Carrie adaptation is not only logical, the timing was correct.

What results is a decent story that speaks out against holding in trauma, giving Carrie’s mother Margaret (Moore) greater nuance. It’s not only a film flatly speaking out against fundamentalism, but how those beliefs induce shame and prevent seeking help. Although the bullying amounts to torture, Carrie hits a breaking point in a way that conveys the horror of a school shooter in this modern era – although admittedly, the thirst for greater carnage has less impact than intended; it’s numbing shock value.

To her credit, Moretz conveys happiness better than Sissy Spacek. Looking in the mirror and preparing for prom, she shows this awkward, even somewhat fearful smile. It’s a perfect way to convey the swirling emotions dancing through her head, that mix of finally being able to live while still fearing the backlash from her sheltered mother who never once loved her daughter, and only viewed her as sin.

Video

Originally finished at 2K, this resulting upscale looks satisfying. There’s detail galore in close, and exteriors show exceptional definition. While slightly softer than a true 4K scan, the sharpness is enough to suggest otherwise at a glance. A grain structure added to the imagery brings grit and slight splotchiness if looking closely (and elevated by darkness), but it’s otherwise harmless.

The real reason to upgrade is this Dolby Vision pass, with lush primaries, great flesh tones, and a vividness that readily bests the Blu-ray. Flesh tones land accurately, and a burst of brightness elevates establishing shots. Inside Carrie’s home, black levels sink low, but not total black. It’s enough to generate depth.

Audio

Carrie’s power generate a sensational jolt when activated, throbbing and shocking, maximizing the range. Music and muscle cars can likewise pump up the bass, showing an ability to vary intensity successfully.

Surrounds do some heavy lifting in spots, nicely tracking the rumbling telekinesis. School hallways lift the rears, and even outside on the football field, winds easily pan between surrounds. When Carrie begins her rampage during prom, objects fall and clatter in every speaker. Flames fill the soundstage, and one student whipped by electrical wires sounds spectacular in the best/worst way. The house implosion at the end? Flawless. Shame Carrie wasn’t given a full Atmos makeover, but what’s here is fantastic.

Extras

Two new interviews reside on the Blu-ray, along with all the bonuses other than the commentary from director Kimberly Pierce. Production designer Carole Spier speaks on her work, and author Joseph Maddrey (who penned books on Stephen King adaptations) chats next. Other bonuses come from the the original Blu-ray release, including deleted scenes, an alternate ending, and other general production featurettes.

Carrie (2013)
  • Video
  • Audio
  • Extras
3

Movie

Carrie’s remake is fine in many ways, but it lacks in suspense when it plays up every major event as if acknowledging what’s coming.

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User Review
1 (3 votes)

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The following six screen shots serve as samples for our subscription-exclusive set of 34 full resolution uncompressed 4K screen shots grabbed directly from the UHD:


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