Remaking Carrie

Here is a trailer for the latest remake of Carrie. It has become popular (and reasonable) to argue that Hollywood spends too much money/effort remaking and rehashing stories rather than taking risks on new ideas, and normally I’d be howling right along side everyone, but I feel this case is different.

Carrie is a story about teenage isolation and angst, especially relevant today. I think there is value in getting an updated look to such a story; one that might ring truer to teens today. Sort of like Shakespeare but with more shower scenes. Better yet, perhaps Carrie is a story that should be retold every generation, like an urban legend (but not like the movie, Urban Legend).

But take a look at this trailer. It does “retelling” right. The iconic imagery is all there, from mother’s head banging to the jeering posse in the shower. The teenage love song is off the needle and careening madly. Most interestingly, we’re shown scenes from the climax. We all know where this story is going to end, hiding it is of no use. This is the tragic tale of exclusion and pointless rage. Nothing ends happily.

Bullying has become a major talking point these last few years, and sometimes it seems as if the more it is in the news, the worse the reports we get. Stories are a way of handling the events surrounding us; they allow us to package and decipher our feelings and experience them in a safe way. Teenagers will always feel like outcasts, it’s probably part of our morphology, and hearing about the horrible ways others have used to come to terms with their persecutors, whether it’s violent outbursts or self-harm, sometimes encourage that behavior in ourselves. Stories help us deal with the unthinkable by giving us a safe venue to, well, think about it.

What do you think? Are you normally against remakes on general principle? Does this trailer make you change your mind? What might?

Bonus: Carrie Joins the Xavier Academy!

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