Stephen King Movie Review- Carrie (1976)

My wife and I watched all three Carrie movies I am going to review this past weekend. It was a lot to watch in one weekend and we got through it. This begins my first movie review of stories by Stephen King. As you know I am reviewing every Stephen King book as they were published and if there is a movie (and sequels or remakes) based on the book then I will review that also. The first movie up is Carrie (1976).

Like the book, basically the opening scene deals with a girl in high school named Carrie White played by Sissy Spacek in a shower and she gets her first period. There she goes berserk thinking she is dying while the other girls in the locker room make fun of her and throw tampons and pads at her. Leading the charge was Chris Hargensen (Nancy Allen) who is basically a bully. Another girl Sue Snell (Amy Irving) is also throwing tampons at Carrie. This gets the P.E. teacher involved Mrs. Collins (Betty Buckley) to break up to torment. This leads to the first sign of Carrie’s telekinetic powers as she breaks a light.

The movie continues with Carrie being sent home where we are introduced to the abusive and ultra religious mother Margaret White (Piper Laurie). She never told Carrie about what a period was and called it a sin.

Like the book, Sue feels sorry for what she did to Carrie and has her boyfriend Tommy Ross (William Katt) ask Carrie to the prom. Chris wants to get revenge against Carrie and with her boyfriend Billy Nolan played by none other than a very young John Travolta. This entails of getting pig’s blood and dumping it on Carrie. This leads to Carrie’s rampage which you will have to see.

Sissy Spacek plays Carrie very well. She portrays a girl who has been bullied, ignored and abused her whole life. Her mannerisms speak loud volumes. She makes you think she is really dying when she gets her first period and when she finally snaps at the prom, she portrays that magnificently. Even though Sissy Spacek played her well I didn’t think she had the look of Carrie from the book but that is just a minor complaint.

The rest of the cast played their parts well. There was some minor changes from the book like the teacher had a different name and some minor details but they did a good job. However, I think who played Carrie’s mom did a wonderful job. She captured the character of Margaret White and really made you feel for Carrie.

Overall this was a pretty close adaptation of Stephen King’s book. Some scenes were left out like an incident that Carrie had as a young girl demonstrating her powers and also a scene with Chris’ lawyer father. The major change was the ending which was different than the book. However it produced the same emotional response one would get from the book. The movie also throws some small twists like who was really laughing at Carrie in the prom scene. They try to make it ambiguous about Sue’s role in the film about the plot against Carrie.

I liked this movie. It had great acting, some freaky scenes, pretty good cinematography, and produces an emotional response. There is also a lot of people being slapped in this movie also. See it and you will know what I mean. Even though it is billed as a horror movie and one would think about blood and guts from a psycho. The real horror I see is how society and the mother treated Carrie. Again as I said in my book review the abuse by the mother is horrific. Carrie being bullied was just as horrific. Being bullied is mainstream news today and this movie should be an example of when you take bulling someone too far could end up. Well maybe someone won’t go all telekinetic on you but it could have serious consequences.

That was my first movie review of the Stephen King universe. Tell me what you thought about it and leave a comment. Have you seen the movie Carrie? What are your thoughts on it and what reactions you had? If you haven’t seen the movie then I do recommend it. Here is a trailer for the movie to maybe spark your interest:

Like I said in my book review I will have a tracker of the final ratings of each book or movie I reviewed to show what I liked or didn’t like. It is a rating based out of five stars. For previous reviews if you missed it you can click on the title and it will link to that review for you to read. The next review will be The Rage: Carrie 2.

Books Reviewed:

 Carrie ***

Movies Reviewed:

Carrie (1976) ****

Leave a Reply