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Sunday, April 5, 2015

Carrie and The Rage: Carrie 2 (Scream Factory Blu-ray)

As a fan of DePalma's adaptation of Stephen King's Carrie, I must admit that my opinion of sequel and remake alike is doomed to be biased. Try as I might I feel like I go back to DePalma's vision of the Carrie White, the cinematography, music queues. I enjoy his creation more than King's original story which is an unpopular opinion at best. I reviewed the most recent incarnation of Carrie directed by Kimberly Pierce and found it a carbon copy of the original with different actors, worse music and the worst effects. Today we have a double feature from Scream Factory focusing on Ms. White. This time we have an earlier remake from 2002 and a sequel in a two disc double feature set.

Carrie

Though I understand why the 2002 made for TV remake of Carrie gets such glowing reviews, I was not fan. Yes, it is ever more faithful to the book than the DePalma version, but that also means that it feels ostensibly long winded. It goes on forever and is in desperate need of an editor to figure out which good bits to include. One thing that has become abundantly clear is that remakes of Carrie focus on the casting of Carrie White and her wack job zealot mother. In this task, the remakes have both been successful. Angela Bettis does a fine job at Carrie white and the production does not suffer because of her. In fact, it is her performance that helps to make Carrie tolerable. Patricia Clarkson does a fine job as her mother as well.

The camera is shaky, almost found footage shakey. Unlike many successful made for TV efforts, this movie feels like a made for TV movie. It has bad editing. It has zero ambiance. It's a long version of a great story, done on the cheap and adds nothing to the cannon. Sure the prom scene is a good fun save for some shitty effects work, but isn't the prom scene ALWAYS fun? You can kill a lot of folks en masse in nearly any movie and as long as you're moderately creative, the scene will work. The infamous opening shower scene actually transcended the rest of the movie by feeling very raw. It's the menstrual discovery you'd hoped for in the original.



The Rage: Carrie 2

Let me be perfectly clear in saying that when Carrie 2 came out, I balked. I refused to see it, and now that I've seen it I at least feel like I watched a fair horror picture. The movie does not carbon copy the original picture and rather tries to create a new legend around a girl who is in Carrie White's situation though many years later. Perhaps it feels more tolerable. We're not talking about a girl who is outcast to the point of social pariah.  Rachel is a pretty cool girl, and she has no trouble getting laid or discussing her "womanhood" for that matter. It's because the character is different that I can enjoy the movie. I am able to remove the connection to the DePalma film and at least find in a tolerable horror picture, still somewhat outside the legend and lore of the Carrie White saga.

Carrie 2 doesn't have the great score of the original movie and the acting in this picture is even subpar to the 2002 remake that I didn't like, but it's a more fun movie. There are great kills. Good cast, though they were never destined to be a bunch of Oscar nominees. This is clearly a late 90's early 2000's Hollywood effort with some of the worst CG I had the curse to watch. I actually almost didn't care about the CG because the kills were well throughout otherwise. Exploding glasses in someone's eyes, Harpoon gun mutilation. These are things I want to see on film.

Each of these movies has a following for one reason or the other and the strong cult following the surrounds Angela Bettis should support this release. Despite the film's flaws, it look good in Hi-Def (shaky but good). The Rage looks good too. The cast is totally 1999 and you should plan your expectations accordingly.  I was surprised to see this movie is a two disc set. There aren't many extras on either disc, Carrie features a commentary and Carrie 2 has some deleted scenes with CG graphic breakdown as well as  commentary. Wait till you see the alternate ending on Carrie 2. Were snakes big in 1999? The cover art is double feature style with the one sheets next to one another on the front.



You can order Carrie and The Rage: Carrie 2 now from Scream Factory:

https://www.shoutfactory.com/film/film-horror/carrie-the-rage-carrie-2-double-feature

Synopsis from Scream Factory:

CARRIE 

Angela Bettis (May) stars in this 2002 adaptation of Stephen King's classic tale of horror and retribution, featuring eye-popping special effects and a shocking, all-new twist ending! Carrie White (Bettis) is a lonely, awkward teenage girl who just doesn't fit in. At school, she endures her classmates' constant ridicule, and at home she suffers endless psychological torture at the hands of her fanatically religious mother (Patricia Clarkson, Six Feet Under). But Carrie has a secret. She's been cursed with the terrifying power of telekinesis. And when her tormenters commit an act of unforgivably cruel humiliation at the prom, they'll soon learn a deadly lesson. Taking its inspiration from King’s book rather than the original film, Carrie was written by Bryan Fuller (TV's Hannibal, Pushing Daisies) and stars Emilie de Ravin (Lost), Katharine Isabelle (See No Evil 2, Ginger Snaps) and Chelan Simmons (Tucker & Dale Vs. Evil).

THE RAGE: CARRIE 2 

In this horrifying 1999 sequel, Rachel (Emily Bergl, The Knick) is a high school misfit who gets caught in the middle of a vicious prank orchestrated by a group of jocks that turns deadly. Once the police bring one of the boys in for questioning, his teammates target Rachel for squealing, and hatch a devious scheme to publicity humiliate her. But messing with Rachel is worse than playing with fire, for when her temper's crossed, it triggers a powder-keg of anger and unleashes horrifying powers that turn a wild teen house party into a wilder mad-house inferno! Also starring Jason London (Dazed And Confused), Rachel Blanchard (TV's Clueless), Mena Suvari (American Beauty) and Amy Irving (reprising her role as Sue Snell from Brian DePalma's original Carrie), this fast-paced, white-knuckle revenge fantasy takes telekinesis to the next level of terror!

--- CARRIE ---
  • NEW Audio Commentary With Director David Carson
  • Trailer
--- THE RAGE: CARRIE 2 ---
  • NEW 2015 Audio Commentary With Director Katt Shea And Director Of Photography Donald Morgan, Moderated By Filmmaker David DeCoteau
  • Original 1999 Audio Commentary With Katt Shea
  • Alternate Ending With "Before And After" Special Effect Sequence
  • Additional Scenes Not Seen In Theaters
  • Theatrical Trailer
Note: None of these movies has even laid a finger of Pino Donnagio's score for the DePalma movie. None at all.


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