Volume 92, Issue 89
Wednesday, March 17, 1999
|ARTS AND ENTERTAINMENT
Carrie 2: teen slasher sequel doesn't cut it
©Photo by Jon Farmer
By Sarah Duda
Think back to a horrifying image of Sissy Spacek drenched in pig's blood, eyes bulging and telekinetic powers exploding in Brian De Palma's classic horror film Carrie. If you are looking for more of the same frightening effects that the original Carrie offered viewers in 1976, then do not waste your time seeing The Rage: Carrie 2.
As a general rule, sequels rarely manage to match, let alone surpass, the quality of their predecessors and Carrie 2 is no exception to this rule. Not only will fans of the original find director Katt Shea's (Poison Ivy) decidedly unappealing, but they will find it downright insulting. The plot of Carrie 2 is an exact replica of the original making it clear this film is nothing more than a lame attempt to recycle an old story and dazzle a new generation of teenagers.
The original Carrie is a clever adaptation of the Stephen King novel of the same name. It was a terrifying tale of teenage outcast Carrie White who uses her telekinetic powers to seek revenge on her classmates. Spacek earned an Oscar nomination for her portrayal of Carrie and the film ushered in the teen slasher genre of horror, paving the way for the subsequent success of other teen-oriented horror classics like Halloween and Friday the 13th.
Carrie 2 introduces viewers to another teenage misfit, Rachel Lang (Emily Bergl), who also possesses telekinetic powers and just happens to be the long lost half-sister of Carrie White. Like her notorious half-sister did before her, Rachel develops a crush on the most popular guy in school, played by Jason London (Dazed and Confused), who promptly returns her affections.
Not surprisingly, the popular crowd refuses to allow their clique to be penetrated by an oddball like Rachel. They manage to lure her to a big party where they employ cruel and embarrassing tactics to humiliate her. After this painfully obvious setup, Rachel retaliates by using her telekinetic powers to initiate a gruesome killing spree.
While these bloody acts were without a doubt designed to make viewers cringe, they are so ridiculous that they provoke laughter instead of fear. More comedy comes from the movie's obvious yet unsuccessful rip off of scenes from current teen horror flicks.
The acting in the film lacks as much as the directing. Put plainly, newcomer Emily Bergl is boring and Jason London falls flat. Even more disappointing is the appearance of actress Amy Irving. Irving played Sue Snell in the original, one of the sole survivors of Carrie's wrath. In the sequel, she pops up pointlessly as a concerned guidance counsellor and delivers a hollow, uninspired performance.
Twenty three years is a long time to wait for a sequel especially a sequel as dull and contrived as this one. For a truly terrifying experience, rent the original but do not put the same expectations on the sequel.
Copyright © The Gazette 1999