Re-Watch: Carrie (1976)

Carrie
Director: Brian De Palma
Writer: Lawrence D. Cohen
Based on: Stephen King‘s novel
Cast: Sissy Spacek, Piper Laurie, Amy Irving, William Katt, John Travolta, Nancy Allen, Betty Buckley
[Here’s my review of the 2013 remake.]

Plot:
Growing up with her ultra-religious, mentally ill mother (Piper Laurie), Carrie (Sissy Spacek) is an outcast at her school who lacks vital information. Like what a period is. So when she gets it, she’s understandably distressed, a fact her classmates use to bring the bullying to the next level. But what they don’t know is that Carrie also has strange powers that she’s slowly getting the hang of.

Carrie is just a fantastic film that has it all – great cast, great director, great camerawork, great writing. I loved it. Again.

Carrie Continue reading

Re-Watch: The Faculty (1998)

The Faculty
Director: Robert Rodriguez
Writer: Kevin Williamson
Cast: Elijah Wood, Clea DuVall, Josh Hartnett, Laura Harris, Shawn Hatosy, Jordana Brewster, Robert Patrick, Salma Hayek, Famke Janssen, Jon Stewart, Piper Laurie, Christopher McDonald, Bebe Neuwirth, Usher Raymond, Daniel von Bargen

Plot:
Something weird is going on in Herrington High School, Ohio. Even weirder than the usual high school occurrences, that is: aliens are slowly taking over the teachers, starting with the football coach (Robert Patrick). But a group of teenagers notice that something weird is going on: nerdy Casey (Elijah Wood), gothy Stokely (Clea DuVall), jock Stan (Shawn Hatosy), cheerleader Delilah (Jordana Brewster), bad boy Zeke (Josh Hartnett) and country girl Marybeth (Laura Harris) get thrown together by circumstances and decide to fight.

I think I saw The Faculty the first time when I was 14, maybe 15. Until then I hadn’t had much contact with horror in general (though I probably had read a Stephen King novel or two), but I knew high school movies. And in its combination of High School and Horror, The Faculty proved to be my gateway drug into the entire horror genre (arguably also because I was madly in love with Josh Hartnett’s Zeke afterwards). I love it for that. But also as a movie in its own right, it’s pretty damn awesome.

Continue reading

Hesher (2010)

Hesher
Director: Spencer Susser
Writer: Spencer Susser, David Michôd
Cast: Devin Brochu, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Natalie Portman, Rainn Wilson, Piper Laurie
Part of: Viennale

Plot:
T. J.’s (Devin Brochu) mother recently died and ever since he’s been lost. His father Paul (Rainn Wilson) has deeply withdrawn into his depression, his grandmother (Piper Laurie) is trying her best to take care of them, but isn’t really capable of that anymore. On one of T. J.’s forays into the city (which often lead him to the car wreck his mother died in), he runs into Hesher (Joseph Gordon-Levitt), a smoking, cursing, aggressive mess, who follows T. J. home and moves in with him and his family. And maybe Hesher is just what they all need.

The movie wasn’t mindblowingly good, but it was nice and I enjoyed it. Admittedly, mostly for Joseph Gordon-Levitt, but also for its sense of humor.

Continue reading