Thursday, October 24, 2013

The Carrie Saga

Just to let you guys know, I'm not really a big fan of remakes. Especially Horror movie remakes. I know there are some exceptions and some are really that good. But when it comes to hollywood producers tampering classics just to make a few bucks, that's a problem. With the reamkes of Halloween, Friday the 13th, A Nightmare on elm street and a recent rehashing of Hellraiser that went straight to video of course, I've been swimming in a sea of disappointment.
So since the reamke of Carrie came out last friday, I thought I should put a little insight  on the new and imporved and my shared memories of the original.

First of all the casting is phenomenal. Chole Grace "hitgirl" Morez as the lead role will be awesome, and then you have Julianne Moore. JULIANNE MOORE as Ms. Margret White. This is going to be....KICKASS! I promised myself not to anticipate, like i did with the aeforementioned remakes, but now....I can't wait for a second!
Okay, now let's take a look at my childhood memoires of this 70's classic.

When I first saw Carrie, I really never thought it was a horror movie. I thought it was more of a tragic drama character study and it's pretty good build up of what the movie is known to be. As a kid, I had so much sympathy for the character because I was that shy, awkward kid. Always had my head down, always dreaded going to school.I'm still that shy, awkward kid but a little more advanced.
I really saw Carrie as a tragic character, struggling to like herself and for people to like her. I almost had tears in my eyes when I seen what she was going through. It really digs deep into the dark world of bullying and this movie is one of them.
Some people would say the villian of the movie is of course, the kids who constantly tormented Carrie or the biggest one of all, Bitch On Wheels, Chris Harggasen. But in my opinon, the true villian is Carrie's crazed-christian mother...Margaret White.

When I first saw her on screen, I thought she was a witch. Some kind of black, evil sorceress strolling down the surburban streets to cast a spell on her would-be victim but only that would-be victim was Carrie White. It takes a lot for  an abusive parent to make a kid snap and unforenately, what it took was that one line of dialouge: they're all gonna laugh at you.

Now that prom night scene really freaked me out back then. Carrie, standing  there in her blood-soaked prom dress, looking out while people are dying in a blaze of fire is one of the most iconic horror images til this day. But the scene that really got me was the dream sequence.

That one-two punch of an ending really tramuatized me as a kid and inspired such shock endings like Friday The 13th(which also scared me as a kid).

After that, there was a sequel called The Rage: Carrie 2, released 23 years later. In my opinon, I think it's a pretty decent movie, it's not perfect but it's at least watchable. I think the reason why everybody hates it because it's called Carrie 2. Originally, it was supposed to be a stand alone movie, but some smuck saw the similarites to Carrie and decided to make it into a sequel, even though it looked like the original film didn't even leave an interpatation for a sequel. It was also a cash-in for a more supernatural take on teen horror films instead your usual scream copy-cat. Big Mistake.

Then there was the T.V. Remake, which I liked at first but later realized how cheesy it was. Not only with the crappy special effects, bad acting, or lack of drama the original had; it was to ambitious for it's own good. Everything, along with some of the acting and special effects, is too over-analyzed, too overused. I do give it points for being more faithful to the novel and....Spoiler Alert! Carrie Lives! After all that mayhem and destruction and she gets to live for it! It's kind of interesting actually. Nowaday's, I see it as a guilty pleasure I guess. It was slated to be a 4-hour pilot for a planned T.V. series, which explains why they spared Carrie. It was probably decided that they shouldn't make into a series but let's just say it was for the best.

So there you have my fond memories on one of my all-time favorite horror films. I just hope that the remake would capture the magic of the original unlike how the other two films didn't.
So have a safe and happy halloween. Oh and I will also do reviews on all of the Friday the 13th and Nightmare on elm street films. So peace out!

Sunday, October 13, 2013

The Tripper

You would say this is the first political slasher, with the George Bush references, the clash between social circles, and lastly, a physcotic killler dressed as Ronald Regan slaughtering hippies. It tries to convey a message but with no deeper meaning to it. You'll never know if it's a parody or a cautionary tale about drugs. But what we do get though is an Avant-grade mind-screw.
The story: after a tragic childhood incident in the late 60's, a mentally ill man goes on a killing spree years after President Ronald Regan declared a release for patients at a local mental hospital, as he heads towards his way at a drug-fueled hippie festival.
The acting is mostly good but sadly there were only two characters i cared about. the rest of the characters are one dimensional stoners who spend most of their time goofing off or doing various types of drugs. Although there are some exceptions: like Paul Ruben's funny cameo and the adorable Lukas hass as the final girl's caring boyfriend. But mostly what we see is a group of hippies tripping out on drugs.
The two aforementioned characters who are the meat of the story are Jamie King as Samantha and Thomas Jane as Officer Buzz. Jamie King really brought on the intensity and the vulnerability she needed for her character. She plays a woman with a broken past and gains the maturity to swear off drugs and getting away from her extremely hostile ex-boyfriend. Ms. King is clearly the star of the movie and knows how to tell a story without the plot doing so itself. Thomas Jane is also a showstopper, playing a cop that's actually smart in these kinds of movies. Not only he puts a comical and likeable approach to his character, he actually figures out what's going on and see the characters for their stupidity. He was the definite hero of the movie.
There are quite a few suspenseful scenes to be found here but the one that really stood out was the climatic chase where the final girl is tripping out on acid. Nothing is scarier than having someone(or something) coming after while you're zoning out of your mind.
The violence is exploitative-style, giving that throwback vibe from the splatter films of the 80's.
The directing is very avant-garde which matches well with the tone of the film since it's centered around drugs. The setting in the woods along with the atmosphere makes for some great suspense scenes.
Overall, this was a very entertaing watch, it maybe a little out of the norm for some people but it has a different look and feel than your usual slasher film.
My Last word: A fun time to watch on a boring Saturday night.