Examiner posted Tim Estiloz review of the CARRIE remake. Does he like it? Well, he does say it is fun in parts, but the truth is that he does not think it was a strong film. He says the original stands the test of time and that a remake was unneeded. Here's the bullet point version. (I'm drawing these from HIS points, they are not mine!)
- The remake offers nothing new.
- Pierce follows DePalma's vision while at the same time tries to move in her own direction.
- Pierce "tinkers" with the characters, resulting in a more shallow rendering of the story itself. He points out Margaret White in particular, noting, "Margaret is now not only an overly religious zealot bathing herself and Carrie in misplaced guilt; but also, she's a self-mutilating cutter doing additional outer damage to the body that already shelters her damaged psyche."
- Carrie comes across as a "mildly rebellious teenager" -- not the "frail and frightened teen tht Spacek played to perfection." (I think I liked the more confident Carrie.)
- DePalma built the final scene up with such suspense that it "evoked Hitchcock at his finest." However, Estiloz calls the Pierce version "bland and tension free." why? Because we already know what's going to happen! That's not exactly Pierce's fault, except that she chose to remake a popular classic film. Hey, try remaking Star Wars and see if we're not really surprised when Darth Vader turns out to be Luke's father -- again. Discussing the moment when pigs blood is dumped on Carrie, Estiloz says, "rather than keep us on the edge of our seats anticipating that moment, Pierce rushes to the event as if it's just the first inconsequential cog in a wheel of repetitive and overdone visuals for shock value alone." Ouch.
- In DePalma's film, Carrie is shown out of control. The Pierce version gives us a Carrie who is completely aware of what she is doing. I had not thought about this until Estiloz pointed it out. Maybe this is why I hate movie reviews -- because I end up agreeing with them when I don't want to. He's totally right! This Carrie is taking eye for eye, while DePalma's Carrie was simply at the mercy of her own powers seeping out of her; she is simply "unable to escape her deadly rage."
Estiloz closes with a few kind words for Moretz and Moore while taking another final digs at Kimberly Pierce:
Moretz and Moore do admirable work for the roles they're saddled with; doing their best to add some dimension to a screenplay where dimension is sorely lacking. The two actresses vainly attempt to elevate the burden of banality that weighs this film down. However despite their efforts, they cannot overcome director Pierce's misguided vision for this bloody mess of a remake.I think the many folk looking to remake other King films might take note. There is a growing chorus of "why bother" beginning to circle these movies. Do we need another Pet Sematary? No! If all these remakes would pool their money, maybe someone could get started on The Dark Tower.