Friday, February 08, 2008

8th Close-Up of Carrie's Hands

Approximately every 8 days in 2008 we celebrate the 8th Something of Something -- whoa, specific

The rest of the internet is going on and on about Marion Cotillard's Psycho Janet Leigh murder recreation in Vanity Fair , so I thought I'd hit the showers, too. I love Carrie. It's easily my favorite Brian DePalma picture. All of its excesses thrill me from the soft core of the title sequence to everything about Piper Laurie's Jesus freak mama-from-hell to the Psycho like sound cues when Carrie uses her powers.

The first scene is a volleyball game which Carrie loses with her clumsiness ("You eat shit") Right away we know this abuse is common for Carrie from her classmates [Aside: Karen Allen plays the queen bee heather (Chris) and Amy Irving is her veronica (Sue) in this early collection of mean girls] As the opening credits roll, the girls hit the locker room and DePalma and his cinematographer and composer lull you into soft-core land with slow motion nude girls and Carrie's sad theme playing.

The volleyball game, the actual opening scene, is all long and medium shots. So the first true close up of this classic anti-heroine is actually of her hand reaching for the soap, so I thought I'd count that out (pictured above). On the 7th shot, Carrie drops the soap. Something's wrong. uh oh... Which brings us to the 8th closeup of her hands and the reveal which sets this whole bloody (sorry) story in motion

Carrie has become a woman. She thinks she's dying. Her classmates attack mercilessly again ("plug it up! plug it up!"). Her psychic rage is triggered for the first but relatively harmless time. The gym teacher sends her home ... and boy is Carrie in for it when her mama realizes she's received "the curse"


Jason Adams said...

Yay! Carrie love! It's my favorite De Palma too - hell, I'd say, outside of it being my own personal favorite, it's the best movie he's made, period (ha). Not that that's a terribly controversial opinion, given his filmography's littered with Rasing Cain's and Mission to Mars's, but there are a lot of Blow Out fans out there who might dispute it.

Sissy's just so phenomenal in it, too. Maybe the greatest horror performance ever given.

StinkyLulu said...


Perhaps my favorite movie ever. In addition to my ongoing love for Sissy, I blame Carrie, in no small part, for my fixation on "actressing at the edges." From Piper Laurie to Amy Irving to Nancy Allen to Betty Buckley to Priscilla Pointer to Edie McClurg, this film has great actressing at every edge. I lurv it.

Cinesnatch said...

Oh no you didn't!

Anonymous said...

A true classic, and one of the few Stephen King adaptations that I like.

Piper Laurie was amazing. Nothing needs to be said about Sissy - she's amazing.

As stinkylulu points out, this film has great actressing across the board.

Sam Brooks said...

Carrie is also my favourite De Palma. Largely due to Sissy Spacek; who gives an insanely awesome performance. It's amazing how she went from this to Coal Miner's Daughter in only four years. And then, twenty one years later; In The Bedroom.

She's a truly gifted actress.

Anonymous said...

I'm with you Brooke - talk about an incredible career span. In her miracle decade:

3 Women
Coal Miner's Daughter
Raggedy Man

She was (and, occasionally, still is) a stunner!