Film, Horror
4 out of 5 stars
Carrie (1976).jpg

Time Out says

4 out of 5 stars

Viewed in a modern context, ‘Carrie’ is a more troubling film than it might have seemed to audiences in 1976, from the opening sequence of naked teenage girls gliding around a shower room in soapy, soft-porn slo-mo, through a bizarrely extended sequence of those same girls being put through their paces on the sports field, to the climactic scene of brutal matricide. As a film about women written and directed entirely by men, it does sometimes feel distanced and exploitative, as though author Stephen King and director Brian De Palma are peeking, ‘Animal House’-style, through that locker room window, and concocting furtive adolescent fantasies about the strange creatures they see there.

But De Palma’s grasp on King’s material is never in doubt: this is a truly throat-grabbing horror movie, sporting a handful of pitch-perfect set-pieces, not to mention one of the few examples of effective split-screen. Sissy Spacek’s performance in the title role is close to flawless: she was 27 when the film was shot, but looks barely half that, and this otherworldly combination of maturity and innocence adds to the film’s unsettling tone.


Release details

98 mins

Cast and crew

Brian De Palma
Lawrence D Cohen
Sissy Spacek
Piper Laurie
Amy Irving
William Katt
John Travolta
Nancy Allen
You may also like