4.6 21
Director: Brian De Palma

Cast: Brian De Palma, Sissy Spacek, Piper Laurie, Amy Irving


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This classic horror movie based on Stephen King's first novel stars Sissy Spacek as Carrie White, a shy, diffident teenager who is the butt of practical jokes at her small-town high school. Her blind panic at her first menstruation, a result of ignorance and religious guilt drummed into her by her fanatical mother, Margaret (Piper Laurie), only causes her classmates'… See more details below


This classic horror movie based on Stephen King's first novel stars Sissy Spacek as Carrie White, a shy, diffident teenager who is the butt of practical jokes at her small-town high school. Her blind panic at her first menstruation, a result of ignorance and religious guilt drummed into her by her fanatical mother, Margaret (Piper Laurie), only causes her classmates' vicious cruelty to escalate, despite the attentions of her overly solicitous gym teacher (Betty Buckley). Finally, when the venomous Chris Hargenson (Nancy Allen) engineers a reprehensible prank at the school prom, Carrie lashes out in a horrifying display of her heretofore minor telekinetic powers. Many films had featured school bullies, but Carrie was one of the first to focus on the special brand of cruelty unique to teenage girls. Carrie's world is presented as a snake pit, where the well-to-do female students all have fangs -- even the reticent Sue Snell (Amy Irving) -- and all the males are blind pawns, sexually twisted around the fingers of Chris and her evil cronies. The talented supporting cast includes John Travolta, P.J. Soles, and William Katt. One of the genre's true classics, the film was followed by a sequel in 1999, as well as by a famously unsuccessful Broadway musical adaptation that starred Betty Buckley, the movie's gym teacher, as Margaret White.

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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Monica McIntyre
The film that launched Brian De Palma's career as an A-list director, and one of the most flamboyantly gory hits of the 1970s, Carrie deftly mixed knowing wit with abject terror long before it became Hollywood convention. Based on Stephen King's novel, the plot concerns Carrie White (Sissy Spacek), a painfully shy high school girl who freaks out when she begins to menstruate. The ranting by her witchy, evangelical mother (Piper Laurie) and the teasing by her cooler classmates only add to her paranoid adolescent horror. Two particularly nasty peers (Nancy Allen and John Travolta) even plot to humiliate her at the senior prom, oblivious to the fact that, for Carrie, womanhood has arrived with telekinetic powers -- the ability to propel inanimate objects by force of her mind. The march toward the movie's climactic showdown, thanks to De Palma's virtuoso camera movement and bold use of color, is as grippingly satisfying as it gets. Spacek and Laurie turn in tremendous performances, and Amy Irving turns heads as a kindhearted classmate. But it's truly De Palma's bravura storytelling -- right down to the final scene -- that makes Carrie one of the most shocking portraits of teen cruelty ever to come out of Hollywood.
All Movie Guide - Mark Deming
Stephen King's first novel was also his first work adapted for the screen and, with the arguable exception of The Shining, is still the best, thanks largely to a remarkable performance from Sissy Spacek as Carrie White and a surprisingly subtle, intelligent presentation by director Brian De Palma. De Palma wisely doesn't focus on Carrie's strange power to move objects with her mind in the first act. Instead, he emphasizes her miserable existence as a high-school outcast with a remarkably awful home life, and Spacek's performance brings Carrie to painfully vivid life. Carrie White personifies every high-school student who didn't fit in, and Spacek makes her sympathetic without making us wonder why people pick on her; when Carrie finally takes her revenge, Spacek transforms her into a monster with a strange dignity, at once terrifying and heroic. De Palma presents the story in clear, well-paced fashion, for the most part avoiding the all-too-obvious homages to other filmmakers that often mark his work and (with the exception of the split screen for Carrie's rampage at the prom) laying off distracting visual trickery, letting his cast and Larry Cohen's screenplay do the work. Often regarded as a watershed of '70s mainstream horror, Carrie is at the same time one of the truest and most painfully perceptive films about the high-school caste system; nothing would touch it in this regard until Todd Solondz's Welcome to the Dollhouse in 1996.
Entertainment Weekly - Michael Sauter
Though Carrie has been on DVD since 1998, the special edition is worth taking a look at, if only to check out the improvements on an extras roster that was woefully inadequate. It still doesn't offer a director's commentary...but the producer has compensated with not one but two "making of" documentaries.

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Product Details

Release Date:
Original Release:
Mgm (Video & Dvd)
Region Code:
[Wide Screen]
[Dolby Digital, monaural]

Special Features

Eight-page booklet featuring trivia, production notes, and a revealing look at the making of the film; Original theatrical trailer

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Sissy Spacek Carrie White
Piper Laurie Margaret White
Amy Irving Sue Snell
William Katt Tommy Ross
Nancy Allen Chris Hargenson
John Travolta Billy Nolan
Betty Buckley Miss Collins
Sidney Lassick Mr. Fromm
Stefan Gierasch Principal Morton
Priscilla Pointer Mrs. Snell
Michael Talbott Freddy
Cameron de Palma Boy On Bicycle
Doug Cox The Beak
Anson Downes Ernest
Edie McClurg Helen
Noelle North Frieda
P.J. Soles Norma Watson

Technical Credits
Brian De Palma Director
Gregory M. Auer Special Effects
Larry Cohen Screenwriter
Lawrence D. Cohen Screenwriter
Wes Dawn Makeup
Pino Donaggio Score Composer
Jack Fisk Art Director
Bert Hallberg Sound/Sound Designer
Donald Heitzer Asst. Director
Paul Hirsch Editor
William Kennedy Art Director
Bill Kenney Production Designer
Paul Monash Producer
Rosanna Norton Costumes/Costume Designer
Ken Pepiot Special Effects
Louis A. Stroller Associate Producer
Mario Tosi Cinematographer
Dick Vorisek Sound/Sound Designer
Stephen King Source Author

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Scene Index

Side #1 --
0. Scene Selections
1. Logo/Title/The Shower [6:35]
2. "It's Carrie!" [2:30]
3. "Creepy Carrie" [:43]
4. Mrs. White Visits [2:44]
5. "You're A Women Now" [3:58]
6. The Mirror Crack'd [2:25]
7. Tommy's Beautiful Poem [2:21]
8. Drill Sgt. Collins [4:05]
9. "One-Two-Three-Four" [1:14]
10. "Telekinesis"/The Slap [2:29]
11. Sue Asks A Favor [:49]
12. Heatwave [2:54]
13. For The Love Of Billy [2:44]
14. The Pitch/The Pep Talk [3:17]
15. "Why?" [2:26]
16. Perseverance/Pighunt [3:29]
17. Mama Says No [3:25]
18. Let You Pull The Rope [1:13]
19. Everybody's Talkin' [2:00]
20. "All Gonna Laugh" [1:21]
21. "Are You Scared?" [2:28]
22. Memory/First Dance [3:13]
23. "We're On Here" [6:43]
24. The Old Switcheroo [2:28]
25. King and Queen [2:14]
26. Crowned In Blood [3:01]
27. Carrie's Revenge [3:30]
28. The Car Toss [4:03]
29. "Devil Has Come Home" [:50]
30. Mama's Blessing [6:56]
31. The Final Grab [5:04]
32. End Credits [3:08]

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