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Monday, 29 October 2012

A Trick-or-Treat Review; Carrie (1976)

As we continue to celebrate Halloween, let's look at another classic of the 70's; a year in which most original concepts of horror had come about.

Released in 1976, Carrie is a tale of vulnerability at the highest as we follow the path of Carrie (Sissy Spacek); a reclusive high-school student who through-out has had her fair share of incidents regarding her lonely persona which seems to attract malicious bullys.

Not much help in her troubled life is her mother Margaret (Piper Laurie) who has strong, sadistic religious beliefs. The controlled paranoia of Carrie's mother is particularly seen when she features in one of many sinister moments between mother and daughter; Carrie is sent home early due to a scene in the schools showers when she freaks out after getting her first period, attracting the attention of heartless students to laugh and throw things at her. (Yep, quite sad really).

Margaret can only see her daughters situation as a sin, while constantly revealing her regrettable desire of killing Carrie as a child. Margaret condones intimate relations, viewing such an act as extremely sinful.

While Carrie is sometimes forced into repeating her mothers religious chants and locked in the "Sin" room for forgiveness, Carrie begins to notice a telekinetic change in her mind, revealing an extraction of movements and powerful forces.

While not fully understanding the sheer power behind this, it is when Carrie is suddenly asked to the dance by Tommy Ross (William Katt). Carrie mistakenly sees this a glorious opportunity to be accepted and for once in her life, sociable. However the events concerning Carrie and a minority of bully's change the course of her haunting ability.

From start to finish Carrie offers an original spookish concept of ones desire and utter portrayal that leads a reclusive to believe in sociability outside the home her mother continues to rule. The constant Psycho resemblance is seen through-out an plays a wonderful tribute to Hitchcock's masterpiece, referencing the "Eeek" almost slash sounds occurring through-out the films time line.

Directed by Brian De Palma, with Stephen King's novel at hand, Brian creates a fantastic jerk of back-forward scenes that involve Carrie at the happiest of times, even though you know deep down this girl is tormented by pretty much everyone surrounding her. The terrifying jingles of emotions are heard and witnessed by Carrie alone in her bedroom, then a couple of brief reflections of the teens in high-school who are truly enjoying themselves but oblivious to Carries haunting presence.

I was quite surprised to see a goofy John Travolta appearance. He plays Billy Nolan; a puppet alongside high-school popularity queen Chris (Nancy Allen) who some might know as Murphy, aka Robocop's annoying partner. It is more so the antics of Chris who is hell bound on destroying further-more the reputation of Carrie.

The haunting element of this classic are carried out by the freakish chemistry between Carrie and her brain-washed mother. Although the finale results in a memorable cinematic climax, you never forget the performances from both Sissy Spacek and onscreen next of kin, Piper Laurie.

Overall; Another horror classic that leaves a frightening taste before bed. If it isn't the conclusion of this short masterpiece that gets you, it will be the onscreen performance of Carrie's mother that will stay with you for a very long time.

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