I didn’t think there’d be any real demand for a film about an outcast who gets annoyed at an evil sorority house and causes some witchy shit, let anyone enough demand to make that film twice. Yet here we are. Somehow there are enough people who enjoy the concept of Carrie but were like “pig’s blood and mass murder ew no thank you, I just want to see a bitch fall in a fountain”.
The 1978 original has all the crappy retro feel you’d hope for: the opening scene takes place on this random beach with bikinis and groovy funky bass akimbo. I’ll be honest, I was worried I’d accidentally sat down to watch a porno. Thankfully not, but with all the random people getting it on which has about 0.5% bearing on the plot, it was a genuine fear back there.
Sisters Sarah and Patty go to university where kids wear bell-bottom jeans non-ironically and Patty is the most popular, despite calling herself Patty (it was before The Simpsons, it was a simpler time). On the subject of names, Sarah’s nemesis is called Jennifer Lawrence- it’s hard adjusting to hearing J-Law’s name used to refer to a bitch and not a national treasure but that’s the past for you. Evil J-Law chairs the house ANS, which just sounds like “anus” whenever anyone mentions it. Lols all round.
There’s a lot less magic in this film than in the 2006 remake (oh, spoiler: Sarah’s totally a witch or something and her house mother- this woman with a fantastic perm and a penchant for melodrama- wants her to unleash her magic on the girls at the Anus sorority), which reveals the ANS house *and* the rival sorority PED to be chock-full of witches. This time, Patty’s really awkward and called Lindsay- sure, she still abandons Sarah in her hour of need but it’s because the ANS witches offer to make her hot using magic. Why a new wardrobe and a more flattering haircut need witchcraft is beyond me. Also, there’s a really unnerving bit of the 2006 film where Sarah thinks she’s been cutting herself (woah! Very controversial topic to just gloss over like that, don’t you think?) but actually it was her foster mother doing it whilst she slept (if anything, even more WTF but ignored/accepted/forgotten just as quickly).
The 2006 film is definitely the weaker of the two, apart from the cheap CGI when Sarah makes random shit fly around the place and the brilliantly weird line, “your breath smells like virgin”. Oh so many questions raised from that piece of dialogue (is there a set smell? since when could you smell that? Is that a compliment or an insult? Who wrote this?), but overall a bit of a yawnfest. I’d rather take the recycled zooms on 70s Sarah’s face before people fall over pretending they’ve been pushed. Pratfalls beat CGI any day.
The 70s one also has a great farce scene where people ask Sarah for coffee- wacky! It culminates in her yelling (with diction and emphasis all over the shop), “the whole WORLD’s drinkingcoffee!” It does lose pace at the end though. Make sure you watch with friends or like me you may end up ditching the ritual and subsequent fire and chaos to check your Twitter.
Spoopy Rating: 2/3 more crappy than creppy.