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Stephen King’s novel Carrie was published in 1974 and first imagined for film by Brian De Palma in 1976 (starring Sissy Spacek in the titular role). It has been remade once more, but it’s hard to believe that Kimberly Peirce, the director behind the celebrated Boys Don’t Cry, is at the helm of this uninspired remake.

Chloë Grace Moretz, whose previous credits include diverse films such as Hugo and Kick-Ass, plays the timid and friendless Carrie White. Carrie lives with her rabidly religious mother, Margaret (Julianne Moore). Margaret is deeply troubled, believing that Carrie was born out of sin. Carrie leads a closeted life cloaked in fear, punishment, penance and ignorance.

One of the aspects of the 1974 story that seems implausible in the mid-2010s is that an American teenager is unaware of menstruation. This is the very basis of Carrie’s heartless humiliation in school. A traumatized Carrie discovers she has telekinetic powers, which she harnesses and later uses to wreak havoc on her school when things go tragically wrong on her prom night.

Billed as a thriller-horror, Carrie is devoid of scares, compounded by mediocre special effects. Watching Moore in the role of the obsessive, violent, irrational mother, you wonder why the actor—known for her work in such films as Boogie Nights and The Kids Are All Right—would have done this part.

Moretz plays Carrie as either a constantly petrified, meek outcast or a grimacing destroyer. Peirce fails to build a connection between audience and protagonist and Moretz is unable to add tinges. In fact, the entire remake exercise seems unimaginative.

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