Friday, July 5 - Saturday, July 6, 2019
“CARRIE might be a film about high school, but it was perhaps Brian De Palma’s first completely mature film, at least equaling the nearly-concurrent release Obsession in gothic pathos. Based on Stephen King’s first novel, famously written in near-poverty as the future bestselling mogul tried to make ends meet by teaching English to high school kids, Carrie turns a fairly contemptuous source text (in the book, Carrie is nearly as unappealing as her tormentors) into, as Pauline Kael said, a ‘teasing, lyrical thriller.’ It brought both De Palma and King into mainstream visibility, kick-started the careers of nearly everyone involved (or, in Piper Laurie’s case, provided an unexpected return to form playing horror cinema’s ultimate mom from hell), won two acting Oscar nominations and earned fantastic reviews and word-of-mouth. Surely this represents De Palma’s first great selling out, right?
“Absolutely not. Carrie, a profoundly sad horror comedy about a dumped-on, telekinetic outcast whose late-blooming menstrual cycle and sexual maturation react violently with her fundamentalist mother’s psychological chastity belt, is the film in which De Palma discovered that his destructive sense of humor could be synthesized with his graceful visual sensibilities in a manner that would accentuate both. The linearity of King’s storyline (actually, the linearity of screenwriter Lawrence D. Cohen’s version of King’s novel, which was told via a fussy collage of news articles, testimony, and Reader’s Digest memoirs) has the preordained momentum of Greek mythology; some of the shots of a pig blood-soaked Carrie standing above her peers at the fateful prom were lifted from the theatrical performance De Palma shot of Dionysus.” – Slant Magazine
Part of our Spring 2019 season of “Waverly Midnights: Parental Guidance.”
- Country USA
- Rating R
- Year 1976
- Running Time 98 minutes
- Distributor Park Circus
- Director Brian De Palma
- Writer Stephen King (novel), Lawrence D. Cohen (screenplay)
- Editor Paul Hirsch
- Cinematographer Mario Tosi, Isidore Mankofsky
- Cast Sissy Spacek, Piper Laurie, Amy Irving, William Katt, John Travolta, Nancy Allen, Betty Buckley, P.J. Soles
IFC Center does not generally provide advisories about subject matter or potentially triggering content in films, as sensitivities vary from person to person. In addition to the synopses, trailers and other links on our website, further information about content and age-appropriateness for specific films can be found on Common Sense Media, IMDb and DoesTheDogDie.com as well as through general internet searches.