No one is quite sure what goes on in the smoke-filled rooms of Hollywood production studios. Maybe there really are warehouses full of monkeys and typewriters, all crammed together and churning out Twilight screenplays, which never see the light of day because they’re too intelligent. Maybe it’s like in that episode of South Park when Cartman is disguised as a robot and single-handedly and successfully pitches 800 Adam Sandler films. Or maybe some very rich, very boring men sit around naming existing films that have yet to be remade (though that is not a necessary requirement) which can be spat out once again, with none of the care or vision of the original, for no reason other than to make some more money. If that is indeed how it works (and it definitely is) then it seems that these men have stumbled across the 1976 horror classic, Carrie.
While it’s impossible to pre-judge these things, remaking Brian De Palma’s original does seem utterly pointless, which is true of most remakes, particularly when it comes to horror. From what has been said about the new version, along with the few pictures available, it looks to be the worst kind of remake; one which doesn’t understand the original. Apparently it’s going to be more like Black Swan, but that film was massively inspired by Carrie in the first place. Presumably all that means is that the new film will have more sex in it. This is a horror remake after all, and as such it will be the same as the original but with a more attractive cast, none of the atmosphere and all the interesting stuff taken out with a big, industrial vacuum cleaner.
But again, we can’t judge yet and there’s actually a strong cast on board; Chloë Moretz is Carrie, in a piece of casting that’s about as exciting as the film promises to be… Incidentally, Moretz claims that she is not going to watch the original to ensure that her performance is untainted, as if there was ever any danger of coming anywhere close to the genius of Sissy Spacek’s Oscar-nominated performance. But Moretz is generally excellent, as long as she doesn’t do that English accent from Hugo. Carrie’s sympathetic gym teacher will be played by Judy Greer, who is hilariously unhinged in the brilliant US comedies Arrested Development and Archer. If that’s not enough, Julianne Moore will star as Carrie’s über-religious mother. Moore is always great (and, like Moretz, never more so than in 30 Rock. Yes, another amazing American sitcom) but has big shoes to fill given how utterly terrifying Piper Laurie was in the original.
As usual, they’re touting the “it’s not a remake” line, claiming that the source material is instead Stephen King’s novel; a line that can be quickly dismissed as it would imply that the rich, boring men actually read books. Remake or not (and it definitely is), all we ask is that these classics be left alone, and that Hollywood comes up with some new ideas for once. But when that happens, we get films like Chernobyl Diaries. We can’t win.