Carrie is a 2013 American supernatural horror film, directed by Kimberly Pierce, and is the third film adaptation of Stephen King's 1974 novel of the same name. The film was produced by Kevin Misher, with a screenplay by Lawrence D. Cohen & Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa. The film was released by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer and Screen Gems on October 18, 2013. The film stars Chloë Grace Moretz as the titular Carrie White, and Julianne Moore as Carrie's mother, Margaret White, Judy Greer as Ms. Desjardin, Portia Doubleday as Chris Hargensen, Gabriella Wilde as Sue Snell, Ansel Elgort as Tommy Ross, and Alex Russell as Billy Nolan.
The film is a reimagining of the classic horror story about Carrie White, a shy girl outcast by her peers and sheltered by her deeply religious mother (Moore), who uses her telekinetic powers with devastating effect after being a victim of a cruel prank at her senior prom.
Carrie contains examples of:
- Abusive Parents:
- Margaret White, in true Carrie fashion. She has a tendency to slap Carrie, hit her in the head with a Bible (a literal Bible thumper), and even forcefully drag her into the prayer closet.
- However, because she still shows some genuine love for her daughter in this version, she might be an example of a Well-Intentioned Extremist as she genuinely believes her own incoherent religious ramblings.
- Adaptation Dye-Job:
- Tina is a redhead in the book but is brunette here.
- Carrie's hair is mousy brown in the book, but blonde here.
- Margaret has fully white hair in the book.
- Going by the original film, Mrs Snell was a brunette. Here she's a blonde.
- Adaptation Explanation Extrication: There are several survivors of the massacre besides those Carrie electrocutes, and additionally George is seen helping people out of the gym even when Carrie locks all the doors. In the book, Carrie didn't leave all the doors open at once and a few people got out through the fire doors before she realised. It's also said in the book that at one point, Carrie lost concentration on keeping the doors closed, which allowed some extra people to escape.
- Adaptation Name Change:
- Helen Shyres becomes Heather.
- George's date was Frieda in the book and Erika in the film.
- Nikki's last name is Watson, meaning this is a case for Norma Watson from the book.
- Adaptational Badass:
- Carrie in the 2013 version is more adept in using her powers. She's also much more ruthless in punishing her tormentors.
- Sue also goes to the prom knowing Chris is going to try something, fully intending to stop her. When the massacre happens, she can be seen calling the emergency services on her phone. And the confrontation with Carrie happens in the collapsing White House, during which Sue still tries to save Carrie.
- Adaptational Attractiveness:
- Carrie here of course is not like the chunky, acne-covered girl in the book — but played by the very cute and clear-skinned Chloë Moretz.
- Margaret White too, as her novel counterpart is described as ugly and overweight, while here she is played by the attractive Julianne Moore. Julianne is admittedly dressed down a bit, so this is downplayed.
- Going by the original film, Mr. Uhlmann (who was Mr. Fromm there) was middle-aged, balding and overweight. Here he's an attractive, slender twentysomething.
- Billy Nolan had first been played by slightly chubby John Travolta (and portrayed as a bumbling dork), and then by Lean and Mean Jesse Cadote. Here he's played by Alex Russell, who's been Mr. Fanservice in many of his other roles.
- Sue is a downplayed example, as her previous two actresses were attractive (and her popular status in the book indicates she's a pretty girl) but given an earthier look. Here, she wears more make-up and has flattering and often skimpy clothes in most scenes (she even gets a scene wearing just a towel). Her actress Gabriella Wilde was previously a model for Ambercrombie & Fitch.
- Adaptational Comic Relief: Miss Desjardin gets a few funny moments that weren't in the book, including some adorable dancing at the prom. Her actress Judy Greer is primarily a comedian.
- Adaptational Explanation: The 1976 film has a bit of a Plot Hole with regards to Sue suddenly showing up at the prom. Was she in on the prank? Or was she trying to stop it? The implication seems to be the latter, based on how she gets unsettled when she sees the bucket and tries to warn the teacher about it. However, it's not explained how she would have learned about this in the first place. In this version, Chris sends her a text saying an implication of what she's gonna do, and Sue explicitly goes there to prevent it.
- Adaptational Heroism:
- Minor example. Chris's father tries to sue the school in the book while fully aware of everything his daughter has done. In this, he seems to think she didn't do it, and appears to be furious with her when it's revealed she has a video of the prank. That said it's still implied that Chris turned out the way she did because he was a bad influence, so, yeah, minor.
- In the book, Sue quite willingly takes part in the tampon throwing, only stopping when Ms. Desjardin comes in. Here, she stops very quickly when she sees how badly Carrie is taking it. She also tries to explain to Miss Desjardin that Carrie doesn't know what's happening to her.
- In this version, Billy seems sincere when he tells Chris he'll help her get out of town, while in the book this was a lie and he intended to dump her soon afterward.
- Margaret is still abusive, but unlike other versions she genuinely loves her daughter and has a lot of Pet the Dog moments. After the shower incident she express anger towards the girls who made fun of Carrie, asking Sue Snell's mother if "there are any good girls" in Chris' group, and when she tries to stab Carrie she's shown to be more remorseful, claiming that she tried to do the same thing when she was born, but she chose not to do it instead, even saying "God let me keep my little girl".
- Zigzagged with Carrie White. In the novel, Carrie is fully aware of what she’s doing when exacting her revenge at prom, and intentionally heads home to kill her mother and eventually, Billy and Chris. The 1976 film heavily implied that Carrie lost control of her powers and is in a trance. The 2002 film has Carrie go in a trance and not have any memory of the prom massacre. In this film, Carrie is in complete control and is exacting her revenge with precision, and is clearly enjoying killing her tormentors, but it was likely just a simple adrenaline rush while outside of her right mind because she’s instantly horrified by her own actions while cleaning herself up at home. Once again, she only kills Margaret out of self-defense and not out of vengeance.
- Adaptational Job Change: In the book, Margaret worked at a laundromat. She's working as a seamstress here. Coincidentally, this is what Carrie herself does in the book (albeit taking in sewing for neighbours).
- Adaptational Modesty:
- As noted below, Carrie is covered up by a towel during the shower scene due to Chloë Moretz being underage. She was naked in the book and the other two films.
- Any sex scenes between Billy and Chris are not depicted. Even the one deleted scene where they make out on his car is comparatively tame, as they remain fully clothed.
- Inverted in another case, as this is the first film adaptation to show Tommy and Sue having sex (the scene was also filmed for the 1976 version but was cut, and is now lost).
- Another inversion comes from the gym class scene. In the book and 70s film, it's a volleyball game (and baseball in the 2002 film). Here it's in the pool, getting the actresses into swimsuits (and giving Tommy a Shirtless Scene).
- Adaptational Ugliness:
- Downplayed. Unlike earlier adaptations that portrayed Chris as part of The Beautiful Elite, here she is shown to be rather trashy — over-tanned, with too much make-up and ratty hair extensions. As noted below, this was done to give the impression that Chris could subconsciously be jealous of Carrie's more natural beauty.
- Another downplayed example. Judy Greer is far from ugly, but she's a full ten years older than Miss Desjardin of the books — who at the prom is said to look young enough to be a student.
- Adaptational Villainy:
- In true Carrie adaptation tradition, a girl gets this to become Chris's Beta Bitch. In this version it's Tina. The same could be said for the composite characters Heather and The Twins.
- Chris is also more antagonistic to the girls than she is in the book and other adaptations. She verbally attacks Sue and the rest of her friends after she refuses to walk out of the detentions, is laughing cruelly at Carrie getting blood poured over her, and tries to run Carrie down towards the end. Even after Carrie spares her, she still tries to kill her.
- Billy's friends were a lot less evil in the book. They didn't know about the prank and one of them was horrified when he learned what happened. In the film version, they're fully on board with the prank and help rig the voting.
- Casual dialogue can imply a whole lot. The movie takes a cue from the book, and strongly implies that Margaret's mother was telekinetic (in the book it was her grandmother). However, the film goes farther with the line "the devil keeps coming back...you have to kill it again and again." Implying that Margaret killed her mother, believing she was possessed. This makes her manic behavior and uncontrollable freakout about Carrie's power much more understandable.
- Zigzagged with Carrie herself, While the 1976 and 2002 versions are implied to have been in somewhat of a trance during the prom massacre, this interpretation of Carrie White knows exactly what she's doing and specifically targets her tormentors with her telekinetic powers. On the other hand, she only intentionally kills the people who bullied her (with one exception),and basically lets the rest of them go, as well as saving Desjardin from getting electrocuted.
- Age Lift: In the book, Miss Desjardin is a young teacher on her first year — making her mid-20s. Judy Greer was in her mid-30s.
- Alas, Poor Villain:
- The mean twins Nicki and Lizzy are killed off in quite a tragic way — Carrie holds them down on the floor while the other students trample them to death. They die Holding Hands.
- Although Tina absolutely deserved it, Carrie tortures her first by whipping her with live electric cables — while Miss Desjardin and George watch horrified.
- Carrie even feels sympathy for Chris, who watches her boyfriend die and momentarily looks like a scared little girl (Carrie also didn't see a terrified Chris texting her father for help before she attacked). Chris then subverts this by still trying to run Carrie down — and gets thrown through the windshield and blown up in a gas pump explosion.
- All There in the Script:
- Nicki's last name is revealed to be Watson in the original script, where she resembled the novel's version of Norma Watson much more than in the finished film.
- Heather reveals in the original script that her boyfriend's name is Brian, Tommy also states in the script that one of his friends is named Brian Maxwell, implying it's the same Brian as he was also a popular student.
- All There in the Manual: Heather's last name is never revealed in the film, but the wikipedia article lists her last name as "Mason".
- Alone in a Crowd: Chris, when none of her friends will walk out of the detention with her. It's also done with Carrie after the shower video is put on Youtube, as she walks down a hallway alone while everyone around her laughs at her. In fact, it’s implied throughout the whole film with Chris that, aside from Tina, even her own friends don’t like her. Not very surprising considering what Chris is like.
- Always Identical Twins: Nicky and Lizzi are twins who have identical appearances. Even further, identical mannerisms.
- And Starring: Julianne Moore as Margaret.
- Armor-Piercing Question: In this version, when Sue tries to justify not apologizing to Carrie since Tommy never apologized to a bully he beat up, Tommy asks her, "What did Carrie White ever do to you?" (They have a similar conversation in the book as well.) Later on, Sue tries to use the same line against Chris, but she's completely unaffected by it.
- As the Good Book Says...: Zigzagged. Carrie's mother cites teachings and verses that are so skewed and outrageous that Carrie outright notes that they aren't even from the Bible. The other real ones she does cite are also quote mined or twisted, with Carrie countering them using others.
- As You Know: The principal reminds Carrie (and by extension, the audience) that the state stepped in to stop Margaret homeschooling her.
- Ascended Extra: The Thibodeau twins in the book were only mentioned in passing. Their counterparts here, the Watsons, get to be part of Chris's posse and it's implied they know about the prank. They're also singled out for a gruesome death.
- Asshole Victim:
- Chris, Billy, Tina, Heather, Nicki, Lizzy, Jackie Talbott, and arguably some of the other prom-goers who tormented and/or laughed at Carrie. It’s hard to feel sympathy for Carrie’s bullies when they’re all laughing hysterically at the blood prank out of pure malice and from earlier in the film when they continued to bully her. Their own vile prank cost the life of Tommy Ross, an innocent, all for the sake of a cheap laugh so it’s no wonder most viewers don’t shed any tears for these characters when they eventually meet their brutal demise
- Margaret White, too.
- The Beautiful Elite: Averted. Portia Doubleday was made to look less attractive than Chloe Moretz, being done up like a spray-tanned Snooki/J-Woww wannabe, yet was playing the Alpha Bitch Chris to Chloë's freak loner Carrie. This creates the impression, on top of the characterization in the script, that Chris might be jealous of Carrie's looks.
- Beautiful All Along: Arguably, Carrie, when she dresses up for prom (though she wasn't unattractive to begin with, merely not confident with dowdy clothes).
- Beauty Is Never Tarnished: Averted with Chris' death, in which she gets thrown through a windshield after Carrie crashes Billy's car. Her face gets badly carved up, with several huge shards of broken glass sticking out of it.
- Because You Were Nice to Me:
- The reason Miss Desjardin survives in this version with Carrie tossing her to safety. Of course, there's nothing stopping it from being a Cruel Mercy, given she's Forced to Watch Tina first be tortured with electric cables and set on fire and then the rest of the students be electrocuted.
- Subverted with Freddie Holt, who helped Carrie full screen a YouTube video. She catches him filming her, and hurls a table at him.
- Beta Bitch: Tina is upgraded to this now, and she's the only one of the Girl Posse who's definitely in on the prank with Chris.
- Black Dude Dies First:
- Averted. Both George and Erika are seen among the survivors after the prom scene. Points to George as he was right in the middle of the prom trying to help people escape.
- An inversion with Tina, the only mixed race member of Chris's posse. She's the last of the bullies to die in Carrie's massacre.
- Blatant Lies: Maybe because of some slight bad editing (which is likely since a lot of her scenes were deleted), but it seems that Heather is unaware that the prank is about to happen at first, as implied when she says at the Hair Salon that she knows Chris isn’t coming to prom because she’s suspended, and when she tells Sue at prom that Chris isn’t there. However, judging by her reaction to the eventual prank, which is glee and laughter, it becomes blatantly obvious that she knew the whole time and lied to Sue.
- Bloodier and Gorier:
- The film is noticeably a lot more bloody during the Prom Massacre than even the original film was. There, most of the deaths were accidents brought on by the chaos (the nastiest of them was Miss Collins getting crushed by a falling basketball board). Here, Carrie hurls Heather face-first into a glass door, crushes Jackie and Kenny in the folding bleachers (complete with Blood from the Mouth by Jackie), holds Nicki and Lizzy on the floor so they get trampled to death, whips Tina with live cables until she burns to death, and then electrocutes everyone except Miss Desjardin.
- Also, near the end when Margaret tries to kill Carrie, she doesn't just stab her and then get killed by Carrie. She actually slashes both her leg and arm before Carrie kills her.
- Bloody Handprint: Carrie leaves one on Sue's shirt during the shower scene.
- Blonde, Brunette, Redhead: Chris's Girl Posse has Sue as the blonde, herself and Tina as brunettes, Heather as a redhead, and the twins with black hair.
- Callousness Towards Emergency: Billy doesn't react at all to the fact that the prank got Tommy killed. Chris at least is briefly taken aback, but it's quickly made clear that her main concern is getting out of town and not being arrested for it.
- Canon Foreigner:
- George's date Erika. In the book, she's a girl called Frieda, who is one of Sue's friends. Here, she goes to a different school.
- The twins Nicki and Lizzy don't exist in the book, though they share the same last name (Watson) as a book character. There is mention of a pair of twins with Thibodeau as a last name, but their allegiance to Chris is minor. The 1976 film had the Wilson twins, but again with barely any allegiance to Chris (one of them could be seen congratulating Carrie sincerely when she wins Prom Queen).
- Chekhov's Gun:
- Played with. Tina having a sexual relationship with her teacher, Mr. Ullman, just to get him to torment Carrie further is obviously repulsive, but it almost saves her life during Prom because he tries to find and help her and they head for an exit, before Carrie notices them in time and she starts to focus on killing Tina.
- Margaret White’s kitchen knife, which she takes to Carrie’s room when she hears the ruckus when she’s practicing her telekinesis, this same knife is what she uses to cut her hand after escaping the closet (in a deleted scene), and to attack Carrie after she comes home from Prom.
- Freddy “Beak” Holt’s camera, which he has in every scene he’s in, and what he uses to take photographs at prom, and what leads to his demise when Carrie sees him recording the massacre and sends him flying into a table out of anger for recording her.note
- Billy’s trademark sunglasses. He’s seen wearing them in his first scene with Chris and all the other girls outside the school, watching the shower video on Chris’s phone while Carrie just watches them as she’s leaving. He still wears them in nearly all of his scenes, and accidentally leaves them behind after the blood prank. Carrie sees these sunglasses after looking up at the stage, which is how she realizes that Chris was behind the prank.
- Child by Rape: Carrie was conceived by her father raping her mother.
- Christianity is Catholic: Subverted. Though there is a Catholic-style crucifix hanging in the White home, everything else that we see about their beliefs indicate they're fundamentalist Protestants (incidentally, real fundamentalists disdain crucifixes because of their association with Catholicism).
- Chunky Updraft: Sort of. Immediately before unleashing her power, we can see that the pig's blood on Carrie's body starts to detach from Carrie's skin and to float in the air. Heather is the first to notice and some of the students — if not all of them — clearly notice this as well. Having a Mass "Oh, Crap!" moment, Heather and a few others realize something is going very wrong and to try to exit the room before that the carnage starts. Obviously they fail, though Heather got very close to the exit but Carrie noticed her in the nick of time, and promptly flings her across the gym.
- Composite Character: Heather, Nicki and Lizzy, George Dawson, and Erika Gogan are all an amalgamation of characters from the novel and previous film adaptations. Heather of Norma Watson and Helen Shyres, Nicki and Lizzy of the Thibodeau Sisters from the novel and the Wilson Sisters from the 1976 film, George Dawson takes on some characteristics of Roy Evarts from the novel and 2002 film, and Erika Gogan is a combination of Ruth Gogan and Freida Jason, both from the novel and 1976 film.
- Coordinated Clothes: The Watson twins Nicki and Lizzy wear matching Little Black Dresses and hairstyles to the prom. They have matching hairstyles in Miss Desjardin's detention, too. The only time they don't is in English class, where one sister has her hair in pigtails.
- Cradling Your Kill: Carrie cradles Margaret as she dies. In this case, it's fully justified due to the twisted relationship they had, and Carrie even wants her mother back after she dies.
- Creepy Twins: Nicki and Lizzie. Their movements are totally synchronized, their expressions are always identical, they hardly ever talk, and when they do, they talk at the same time.
- Cruel and Unusual Death: Most of the prom goers, and Carrie’s bullies especially, as they’re her primary targets. Special mention goes to Tina (whipped by electric cords, unwittingly walking into a burning prop, burning to death as a result), Heather (being flung across the gym by Carrie and smashed into a gym door, for Sue to watch), Jackie (being bisected by the bleachers while trying to escape), Nicki and Lizzy (being knocked down by Carrie and forcefully held down to be trampled to death), and Chris (got her face stuck in the windshield after her car was hurled into the nearby gas pump, after which Carrie just walks away).
- Curse Cut Short: When Margaret locks Carrie in the prayer closet:
- Carrie: (banging on the door, screaming) God! You son of a—-! (the door cracks slightly due to her powers)
- Daddy's Girl: Chris is a particularly toxic example. Her father is an Amoral Attorney who has spoiled her into a monstrous person, though he's also implied to be somewhat abusive. She still refers to him as 'daddy' and even after the incident at the prom, she starts to text him "daddy, come help me" — but of course Billy stops her.
- Deadline News: While not necessarily a news crew, the prom massacre has Freddy “Beak” Holt pick up his camera to record Carrie before being killed by a flying table. This was going to provide a plot point in the original cut; where his footage would be used as evidence by the White Commission.
- Death by Adaptation: Tina Blake and Heather. Tina survives in the novel but dies during prom, just like the other film versions. Heather is a composite character of Norma Watson and Helen Shyres, and Norma survives the prom massacre in the novel and 2002 version. Helen's fate is unknown in the novel but she dies in the two previous film adaptations as well. Jackie Talbott survives the prom incident in the novel, and is killed off in the film by Carrie, when she bisects him in the bleachers.
- Decided by One Vote: Despite the contest clearly being rigged here, Carrie and Tommy still win by only one vote.
- Deliberate Values Dissonance: During Carrie's Freak Out about her period, Miss Desjardin slaps her, just like in the original. As such a thing would not be tolerated today, everyone looks horrified, and she later says she's really sorry for slapping her.
- Demoted to Extra: A minor example. Kenny Garson was always a minor character even in the novel, but he was a supporting character in the 1976 and 2002 films as Norma and Tina’s boyfriend and accomplice in rigging the ballots (Jackie plays that role in this film), in this film he’s barely present, appearing in 3 scenes (one in which he’s at the farm ready to kill the pig with everyone else), only named once, and his death isn’t shown during prom, the last time he’s seen is when falls off the bleachers after Carrie forcefully closes them.
- Didn't Think This Through:
- When Chris got her lawyer father to threaten to sue the school since they didn't have proof she was involved in the "tampon shower" incident, it never occurred to her that the school might actually have proof (in the form of the video on her phone).
- Having Tina play the video of the shower incident at the prom, too. Tina was at the laptop the whole time, and is known as Chris's friend — so it would be obvious who was responsible (although Tina herself didn't press play, as she's by the screen, so she could at least claim someone did it instead of her).
- Disappeared Dad: It's unclear what became of Carrie's father, but he is clearly gone by the time of the film (perhaps dead or leaving long ago).
- Disproportionate Retribution:
- Averted, at least in comparison to the other versions: Carrie causes massive property damage and a lot of panic, but only kills the people she thinks had a hand in the pig's blood prank (though it’s heavily implied that were some innocent casualties in the massacre). She even lets Miss Desjardin and Sue go unharmed.
- Played with in the case of Freddy “Beak” Holt. While he was nice to her and was helping her out in the library with her research, he started to record the prom massacre and Carrie was obviously mad that he was recording her most humiliating moment of her life and promptly killed him with a flying table. Even then, he was still an innocent who had nothing to do with the prank.
- This version adds another layer: an offhand comment from Chris implies that Carrie has, on occasion, parroted some of her mother's more extreme beliefs about her classmates in front of them. While one can certainly understand them being annoyed by that, their abuse of her is rightly treated as an overreaction.
- Driven to Suicide: Carrie White lets her house crumble above her as she wants to die with her mother.
- Demoted to Extra: Rachel Spies is now a background character.
- The End... Or Is It?: The 2013 version has Sue visiting Carrie's grave and placing a single white rose by the headstone, which is vandalized with the words "Carrie White Burns In Hell". The headstone cracks and Carrie screams, hinting that she's Not Quite Dead. (There's no indication that this is a dream sequence this time.)
- Et Tu, Brute?: Sue is clearly shocked when she shows up at the prom and realizes what Chris is about to do. She even tries to call out to her, but Chris ignores her.
- Even Evil Has Standards:
- Jackie Talbott, in Billy's posse, is charged with killing the pig whose blood is used to humiliate Carrie simply couldn't bring himself to murder a helpless animal even after "psyching himself up" with cheap macho bravado. This just rubs in how evil Billy is when he kisses the same hammer and gleefully brings it down on the poor swine.
- Tina, despite being 100% complicit in the prank, looks visibly shocked when Tommy is hit with the falling bucket and killed. Jackie mentioned above is next to her, and looks similarly shocked. Of course, that could also be Oh, Crap! about how much trouble they're going to be in now.
- Chris likewise looks worried when Tommy gets knocked out with the bucket, though Billy pulls her out of the room before we can see if it's affected her at all.
- Every Car Is a Pinto: Subverted. It takes Carrie dropping a light pole onto the car, after it's been crashed into a gas station, to blow it up.
- Evil Feels Good: Carrie gets extremely happy when she's causing more and more deaths and destruction at the prom. Particularly when killing the twins and Tina, she definitely looks like she's savouring the moment. Then again, considering the twins’s reactions to the prank and Tina’s being fully in on the prank, it’s understandable why Carrie was so happy to kill them off.
- Evil Gloating:
- Chris sends Sue a text just before the prank to tell her she's about to hurt Carrie. This almost backfires, as Sue comes charging over to stop it, but is caught and thrown out before she can.
- While Tina is collecting the ballots from Tommy and Carrie, she wishes them “good luck” with a suspicious smile.
- Carrie White is also an example, as she has a slight evil smile on her face while killing all of her bullies. When she's ensuring the twins get trampled to death, she's positively giddy. Of course, they were mean, so one can understand why Carrie might be gloating.
- Evil Redhead: Heather — who's seen laughing cruelly at the blood prank and is implied to know what was going on.
- Fall Guy: Billy certainly thinks Chris intends to use him as this if she blows the prank and gets caught, and angrily threatens her not to.
- Fake Shemp: As Chloe Moretz was underage at the time — and therefore could only work for eight hours a day — several scenes had to be shot without her on set. For example a lot of Julianne Moore's scenes had her reading her lines to director Kimberley Peirce. And the gas station scene was shot without Carrie, who was then digitally inserted afterwards.
- Fan Disservice:
- When Mrs. Snell pops into her shop, Margaret lifts up her skirt to Show Some Leg — and proceeds to cut herself with a seam ripper.
- We see a little up-skirt on Nicki and Lizzy during the prom scene...because they've been knocked to the floor and are being trampled to death!
- Fanservice: That being said, the gym class scene now happens in a pool, allowing the female cast to get into swimsuits and Tommy to have a Shirtless Scene.
- The Farmer and the Viper: In the climax of the film, Carrie spares Chris, only to be forced to kill her anyway when Chris tries to run her over.
- Fille Fatale: Tina is seen flirting with her English teacher Mr Ulmann in order to make him torment Carrie too.
- Flat "What": When Tommy asks Carrie to the prom, after a moment of stunned silence this is the only reaction she is able to produce.Tommy: So you know the prom is next week? I was wondering, if you don't have a date already, maybe you want to go with me?Carrie: ...What?
- Forced to Watch: Sue, when she sees the bucket fall on Tommy’s head, and when she sees Heather flung towards the gym doors, cracking the glass and leaving it blood-stained. George and Ms. Desjardin are also forced to watch Tina be whipped with loose cables and be burned alive by Carrie.
- Foreshadowing: Carrie's poem during the classroom presentation makes reference to flames and ascension, foreshadowing the prom massacre when the gym burns to the ground and Carrie ascends to the gym ceiling to escape through the windows.
- Flawless Token: The minor characters of colour — Mr Morton, George and Erika — are all nice to Carrie in their own way (Morton's moment of Accidental Misnaming from the book is also removed). Special attention is given to how George and Erika aren't laughing during the prank. Of course majorly averted with Tina — who's the only non-white member of the Girl Posse and one of the most evil.
- The Freelance Shame Squad: After Chris posts the shower incident online, there's a scene of Carrie walking down a hall by herself, while everyone she passes turns to smirk or laugh at her, indicating that pretty much the whole school has seen the video.
- Get a Room!: Billy jokingly tells Chris and Tina to kiss when they start fooling around on Chris's bed. They don't in the theatrical cut, but there's an alternate take of the scene where they do.
- Hair of Gold, Heart of Gold: Notably in this adaptation, the most moral characters in the story — Carrie and Sue — are shown with blonde hair.
- High Heel Hurt: Quite a dark example. Carrie uses her powers to hold Nicki and Lizzy down on the gym floor while the other students trample them to death. Close-ups of high heels stampeding over their backs, and their bodies are shown to have punctures from where the heels stabbed them. Truth in Television considering how dangerous high heels can be in such a situation.
- Hope Spot:
- There's a brief moment where it looks like the prank isn't going to go off. First, Chris and Billy start fighting over who pulls the rope, as neither wants to do it themselves. Then they have a hard time getting the bucket to turn over, and it looks like the rope might break without dropping the blood. This is just to increase the suspense, since everyone knows it's still going to happen.
- A villainous example is also present. Heather is the first prom-goer to notice that blood is levitating off of Carrie, and promptly rushes to the gym doors and almost makes it before Carrie sees her and flings her across the gym.
- Hotter and Sexier:
- Inverted. While the 2013 version is still R-rated, the opening shower sequence is significantly toned down in comparison to its 1976 counterpart, especially in terms of nudity. This is justified by the fact that Chloë Grace Moretz was barely fifteen at the time; social services and law enforcement (not to mention Moral Guardians) would have had a field day if Kimberly Peirce decided to film her the same way that Brian De Palma filmed the 26-year-old Sissy Spacek. The added violence and bloodshed during Carrie's rampage almost feels like a way to make up for it.
- A straighter example in that this version shows Tommy and Sue having sex (filmed but cut out of the 1976 film)
- Hot for Teacher: In one scene in class, Tina is shown flirting with the teacher.
- Huge Guy, Tiny Girl: Tommy (played by 6'4" Ansel Elgort) and Carrie (5'4" Chloe Moretz). The height difference between the two is particularly noticeable in the scene where Tommy comes to Carrie's house — Tommy has to hunch over just to stay in frame with Carrie.
- I Am Not Pretty: Carrie believes this but it just takes a little pep talk from Ms. Desjardin to convince her otherwise.
- If You Ever Do Anything to Hurt Her...: Ms. Desjardin corners Tommy and Sue and confronts them about her belief that the prom invitation is part of some elaborate prank. It's more about her trying to head off what she perceives as disaster than threatening them if the plan goes awry, but there is the implication that if they are doing it out of nefarious motives, she will deal with them.
- Improbable Infant Survival: Sue Snell is spared at the last minute when Carrie realizes she's pregnant.
- Instant Humiliation: Just Add YouTube!: Chris films Carrie's humiliation in the shower and posts it on YouTube. By the next day, most of the school has seen it. It bites her in the ass when Miss Desjardin and the principal use the video to point to her as the ringleader of the prank.
- In the Back: Margaret does this as she's hugging Carrie.
- It's All About Me: Chris makes this clear when she claims that there would be no prom if she and her friends were banned from it.
- Jerkass Has a Point:
- During her "The Reason You Suck" Speech to Sue, Chris states that Sue didn't keep running Ms. Desjardin's suicide runs because she believed she needed to be punished, she did it so she could still go to prom, which is what she really wanted, capping it off by telling her "You don't give a shit about Carrie White, and everyone knows it." The expression on Sue's face states clearly that the barb hit home, and she starts concocting her prom scheme in the very next scene (and we all know how that turned out.)
- Just before the pig's blood prank, Billy tells Chris flat-out that what they're doing is criminal, and angrily tells her she'd better not blame it on him if things go south.
- Jerk with a Heart of Jerk: Mr. Ulmann is the kind of teacher who joins in on the high school bullying of Carrie to score points with the popular girl, Tina. However, once Carrie is crowned Prom Queen he actually is seen clapping for her. Then after the blood is dropped on her and Tina displays the locker room video, he’s spotted in a blink or you’ll miss it moment laughing at her, proving he’s truly nothing but a Manchild bully.
- Kick the Dog: Carrie reads a poem for her English class, and the teacher describes it as incredibly disturbing, asking Carrie is she's done or if she wants to torment them some more. Tommy's first sign of character development is him Calling the Old Man Out by muttering "asshole." When the teacher asks what he said, Tommy replied that "Awesome. I thought Carrie's poem was awesome. Didn't you?"
- Kick The Son Of A Bitch:
- The twins Nicki and Lizzy — who were among Carrie's bullies, implied to know about the prank (and in the original script were helping with it) — are knocked to the ground and telekinetically held down while the rest of the students trample them to death.
- Tina who helps sneak Chris and Billy in, switches the prom ballots and plays the video of Carrie's first period to humiliate her further... she's whipped with live electrical cords, stumbles into an open fire and burns to death. Before this happens, Carrie hurls a decoration at her to isolate her from any possible help.
- Laser-Guided Karma: This version makes it clear that Carrie is in complete control of her powers, so she dishes out karmic deaths to those who took part in the prank or laughed at her. Heather is flung face-first into the window glass, Kenny and Jackie are squashed by the bleachers, Nicki and Lizzy are held down on the floor and trampled to death, and Tina is attacked with electrical wires until she catches fire. Chris and Billy naturally get carved up in a car accident.
- Lighter and Softer: Just the detention scene. As it would not be possible for Miss Desjardin to hit Chris and remain employed by the school in the 2010s, this part is left out (the 2002 film also left it out, with a compromise where Miss Desjardin shoves Chris against a locker).
- Make Me Wanna Shout: Having finally been pushed too far, Carrie lets loose a shriek of rage that knocks everyone at the prom off their feet before letting loose with her abilities on her tormentors.
- Mass "Oh, Crap!": The reaction of everyone at the prom when Carrie uses her powers in front of the entire assembly to shove Miss Desjardin away from her. Up until this point, no one except Margaret had seen Carrie's powers, and it was a variable Chris and her posse had no way of foreseeing. It's safe to say they realize just what kind of hole they've dug for themselves...
- Matricide: Carrie impales her own mother with dozens of knives using telekinesis, though in her defense, Margaret had tried to kill her first.
- Meaningful Background Event:
- When Ms. Desjardin is confronting Sue and Tommy about asking Carrie to the prom, Tina gives Sue a cold look as she walks by, indicating that Chris's gang are no longer on good terms with her. Same thing with The Twins and Tina in the background of the gym when students are decorating for prom, it looks like they’re just watching the shower incident video yet again until you realize that they probably schemed together to play the video after the blood dump.
- When Sue first sees the bucket, Nicki and Lizzy are seen smirking behind her — indicating they know what's about to happen to Carrie.
- Mind over Matter: Carrie's power of telekinesis. She's seen reading lots of books and watching videos on the topic, perfecting her ability over time.
- Minimalistic Cover Art: The first international movie poster for the 2013 version of the film simply shows a close-up of Chloë Grace Moretz as Carrie, drenched in blood, with the Tag Line "YOU WILL KNOW HER NAME," playing off of the original film's fame to do most of the heavy lifting.
- A Minor Kidroduction: The film opens with Margaret giving birth to Carrie, and contemplating murdering her. A version of the above scene was also shot for the film, though it was dropped later on in favor of the one just described.
- Mutual Kill: The 2013 film has more or less the same sequence of events at the 1976 movie, with Margaret stabbing Carrie and Carrie impaling Margaret with the knives and destroying the house around them after her My God, What Have I Done? moment. The only change is that, before Carrie destroys the house, Sue shows up and tries to get Carrie out of the house. Carrie almost kills her, but instead gently levitates her out of the house after sensing that Sue is pregnant, telling her "it's a girl."
- My God, What Have I Done?:
- After killing Chris and Billy, and blowing up a gas station (in the original script, she caused some more destruction in her town as well — Carrie is walking home in a daze and runs inside calling "Momma!" She then cries Tears of Remorse as she washes the blood off.
- This is preceded by another moment. Miss Desjardin is one of the survivors of the massacre, and she can be seen crying after she shares a look with Sue — having realised the latter was trying to stop the blood being poured, and the resulting chaos was partly her fault for jumping to conclusions.
- Mythology Gag:
- When buying fabric to make her prom dress, Carrie takes the time to examine a nice red gown that's on display in the shop. A possible nod to the fact that her dress is red in the book, but is pink in every adaptation.
- The alternate ending of the 2013 film: Sue has a dream where she is taken in to have her baby, but after some complications, she is accosted by a pair of bloody hands, similar to the original movie's ending where she is similarly attacked in a dream when leaving flowers at Carrie's grave.
- A minor example with Heather, who wears a baseball cap during the gym class scenes, a reference to Norma Watson from the 1976 version who always wore her signature red baseball cap. Heather is a composite character of Norma Watson and Helen Shyres.
- Tina's death resembles something that happens to Rhonda Simard in the book.
- Neck Lift:
- A varient: Carrie does this to Miss Desjardin during the prom massacre, though in this example she's not trying to harm Miss Desjardin, only to get her off the water-soaked floor before Carrie electrifies it. Carrie releases her onto safe ground once this is done, sparing the teacher's life because of the kindness she showed Carrie.
- She does this to Sue when she comes into her house right before she dies. Once again, she uses the move to spare someone from the destruction she's about to cause.
- Never My Fault: Chris blames Carrie for getting her suspended and kicked out of prom, refusing to own up to the fact that it was her bullying and recording Carrie’s freakout in the showers that got her in trouble to begin with. She even outright says as much during detention.Chris: I’m not gonna run another goddamn inch because Carrie White got her period and was too stupid to know what it was! […] This is bullshit! We didn’t do anything wrong!
- Nice Guy: Tommy Ross, one of the few decent characters in the film.
- Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: The same plot point occurs predictably in the 2013 remake, with Miss Desjardin suspicious of Tommy and Sue's treatment of Carrie, and Miss Desjardin kicking Sue out of the prom after Sue receives a text from Chris hinting at the prank. Miss Desjardin even states that "You're not going to ruin this for her (Carrie)." Though Sue's noble intentions are made more clear to the viewer in the 2013 version, Miss Desjardin still has every reason to be suspicious.
- Nice Mean And In Between: The popular girls, although sadly far more fill the 'mean' category. Sue is the nicest, feeling remorse instantly and trying to make amends. Tina and the Watson twins continue to bully Carrie and even ostracize Sue after her Heel–Face Turn. Heather is in between, as she seems afraid of Chris and is nice to Sue but still laughs cruelly at the prank.
- Nightmare Sequence: The alternate ending has Sue dreaming of giving birth only to realize something's wrong. In a homage to the original film, a bloody hand reaches out of her and grabs her.
- No Accounting for Taste: Chris and Billy's relationship is clearly shown to be toxic. He's quite abusive towards her, while she treats him like Dumb Muscle and insults him quite often, especially in the deleted scenes. None of their friends have much of a problem with this.
- No Good Deed Goes Unpunished: Several characters. Sue is the only member of Chris’s bitch group who shows remorse for tormenting her and gives up her prom night so Carrie can have one, which leads to the prom disaster that kills Tommy and her friends (if one can consider the rest of the girls “friends”). Ms. Desjardin, when she kicks Sue out of the gym out of suspicion, when she probably could have stopped it. She will likely be forever traumatized by this (in the novel, she retires from her teaching career forever after surviving prom, stating she’d rather die than ever teach in school again). Freddy “Beak” Holt is a minor example, although he was nice to Carrie she still kills him during prom, mainly because he began recording the massacre.
- No Kill like Overkill: Carrie dishes this out to many of the popular girls.
- Nicki and Lizzy are knocked to the floor and held down as the rest of the students trample them to death — all while Carrie looks on in glee.
- Tina first gets a decoration hurled at her, is whipped with live electrical cords and stumbles into an open fire — where she burns alive.
- Chris engages in Car Fu, gets strangled with a seat belt, has her face thrown through the windshield and then to make sure she's definitely dead — Carrie hurls the car into a gas pump and knocks down a nearby streetlamp to blow it up.
- Noodle Incident: One scene picks up right after Billy and Chris finish telling Tina how he lost his driver's license.
- Not a Game: Billy tells Chris this repeatedly, as he can tell she's not taking the prank seriously and becomes worried that she'll blow it and get them caught.
- Offing the Offspring:
- The 2013 film reveals, in the first ten minutes, that Margaret tried to murder Carrie seconds after giving birth to her!
- Margaret also tries to kill Carrie at the end of the film and manages to stab her in the shoulder, seriously wounding her.
- Oh, Crap!: Chris' reaction during her Villainous Breakdown.
- Pet the Dog: Mr Ullman had previously been mean to Carrie in English class, but he's seen smiling and applauding her as she's crowned Prom Queen.
- Pietà Plagiarism: Carrie does this with her mother's corpse.
- Post-Modern Magik: Carrie White in this version researches telekinesis with the internet, looking up videos on Youtube. This means she has total control over her abilities during the Black Prom, making her much more murderous and ruthless to her victims in comparison to her other film counterparts.
- Power Floats: Carrie leaves the burning gym by levitating out of it.
- Pragmatic Villainy: Tina briefly objects to posting the shower video online, only because she can be seen in the video. Chris tells her that nobody will notice.
- Precision F-Strike: Potentially subverted then played straight. Miss Desjardin still describes the Tampon Shower as "a shitty thing" twice in a row, but the girls don't giggle in response. Later, during the "suicide runs," Chris actually cusses back full-force with the "F" bomb at Miss Desjardin, and even later, Chris' dad points out that a teacher swearing at her students is not okay.
- Progressively Prettier: Aside from Chris, Sue, and Norma — the girls in the original 1976 film were a mixture of attractive and average looking (and even Sue was more down-to-earth looking with modest clothes and unkempt curls). The 2002 film made the cast a lot more attractive, but still downplayed Sue and Helen a little so they looked more like normal high schoolers. Here, all the students are supermodel good looking — with all the popular girls getting scenes in short skirts or hot pants, as well as bathing suits at the start.
- Prom Wrecker: Being a remake of Carrie, this trope naturally shows up, with the film showing the iconic scene of Carrie getting pig's blood dropped on her at prom.
- Race Lift:
- The school principal has been white in previous adaptations (though his race wasn't stated in the books) but is black here.
- Tina Blake, described as a redhead in the book, is played by the mixed race Zoe Belkin.
- George's race wasn't stated, though he was white in the 1976 film, is now Tommy's Token Black Friend.
- Rage-Breaking Point: After getting the blood dumped on her, Carrie seemed like she was just going to leave the stage. But when Tommy gets killed by the falling bucket and dies in her arms, she completely loses it.
- A Real Man Is a Killer: Billy's posse has to goad each other into killing the pig they get the bucket of pig's blood from.
- Repeat Cut: The climactic pig's blood dump on Carrie.
- "The Reason You Suck" Speech: Chris gives an epic one to Sue after Chris is officially no longer allowed to attend prom. Her statements that Sue has been dreaming about her perfect prom with her perfect boyfriend her "whole goddamn life" really drives home to Sue how pointless her contrition up to that point had been, and leads her to plan to sacrifice her perfect prom night for Carrie's happiness.
- Redemption Equals Life: Not only does Carrie save Ms. Desjardin from getting electrocuted, but also allows her to escape safely. Sue is also spared after Carrie finds out Sue's pregnant.
- Red Eyes, Take Warning: Carrie's irises briefly turn blood-red just before she lets loose on the prom goers.
- Remake Cameo:
- Nearly. They considered offering the role of Margaret White to Sissy Spacek, but they never asked her.
- Played straight with the same character in the Japanese dub, as Keiko Han, who voiced Carrie in the dub of the first film, voiced her, while her real-life daughter also voice her in-film daughter Carrie.
- Revenge by Proxy: This version puts emphasis on Chris's anger at Sue for siding with Carrie, suggesting that this is part of her motivation for the prank. She sends Sue a threatening text right beforehand, and when Sue shows up at the prom, Chris looks at her and smirks rather unpleasantly right when she pulls the rope.
- Setting Update: Like the 2002 movie, this adaptation updates the text to the time it was made. Here technology plays a big part in it — as Chris films a video of Carrie's first period. Said video gets used to discredit her lawyer father's attempted lawsuit and gets played during Carrie's humiliation at the prom. Sue showing up at the prom here is now motivated by Chris sending her a threatening text message. Carrie researches her powers via the internet, and watches videos of telekinesis on YouTube.
- Sex for Services: In a deleted scene, Chris gives Billy a blowjob to manipulate him into helping her prank Carrie.
- Sex Is Evil: Margaret despises anything sexual in any way, even between married people, as she tried to practice celibacy within her own marriage, viewing is as a sin no matter what.
- Sexless Marriage: Margaret indicates that she had this with Carrie's father (by her choice), until he snapped, raping her and conceiving Carrie.
- She Cleans Up Nicely:
- Inverted with Sue. In her final confrontation with Carrie, she looks a lot dumpier. This may have been used to show them as similar.
- But of course played straight with Carrie when she's dressed up for the prom.
- When trying to get psyched up to kill the pig, Jackie Talbott says, "Don't worry, little piggy, Uncle Jack's just gonna bash your head right in." It's very similar to Jack's threat when he's coming after Wendy with the baseball bat.
- When making a fake Youtube profile for Carrie, Billy suggests they list Bloodsport as her favorite movie. Also doubles as a Mythology Gag, as 'Blood Sport' is a chapter name in the book.
- Shipping: In-Universe example: during the prom, the students get to vote on who is the prom king and queen. We see one person cross out Carrie and Tommy's names and instead write "Morton" and "Desjardin."
- Shrine to Self: Chris has a big picture of herself in her bedroom.
- Significant Wardrobe Shift: Carrie wearing a dress without sleeves is shown as a sign of her gaining for confidence. Margaret is likewise shocked at her "immodesty."
- Simple Country Lawyer: Parodied, when Miss Desjardin brings up the video Chris put online. "I don't know, I'm just a gym teacher..."
- Slasher Smile: Carrie's expression during the Prom massacre is either this or a snarl of rage, suggesting she's either on a Power High or Drunk on the Dark Side.
- The Sociopath: Chris's behavior goes beyond teenage bitchiness. She has a total Lack of Empathy, a complete inability to take responsibility for her actions, and zero redeeming characteristics. Billy is also a little more accurate to his novel counterpart, being a downright thug who’s heavily implied to be abusive to Chris and has no qualms about bludgeoning the pig to death and shows little concern when the bucket kills Tommy. Tina is also an example, since she has a sexual relationship with her teacher solely for Carrie to have another bully, and gleefully uploads the shower video onto the TV screen during Prom to further humiliate her. Heather and The Twins are minor examples, as they aren’t quite as malicious but still evil to Carrie.
- Someone to Remember Him By: With Tommy's death, Sue's unborn daughter unknowingly becomes this.
- Spared by the Adaptation:
- A variation. Sue thinks she might be pregnant in the latter part of the book, only to get her period after Carrie's death. This version confirms that she is pregnant, and Carrie even spares her for this reason.
- George is said to have died in the book (and his death was filmed) but it's implied he survives the prom.
- Stalker with a Crush: Implied in the Viral Marketing, where the "Find Carrie" Facebook app has Carrie stalking you.
- Superpowerful Genetics: Carrie's grandmother also had telekinesis it seems. She thinks it skipped a generation to her.
- Tempting Fate: Played With:
- Chris sending Sue that provocative text about ruining Carrie's prom night nearly backfires when Sue rushes to the school and attempts to stop her from humiliating Carrie.
- Although she has every reason to be suspicious, Ms. Desjardin kicking Sue out of the prom arguably means she's inadvertently responsible for the massacre taking place as well, as well as her ironic line to Sue when she's asking her not to ruin Carrie's prom.
- Tina posting the shower video. Carrie might have simply walked off the stage in anger and tears with just the blood dump, but the shower video being posted for the whole school to see is where the line was crossed.
- Heather lying to Sue that Chris is not at prom, delaying her from finding her and sabotaging her prank.
- There Are No Therapists: It's mentioned that the state intervened to force her mother to stop homeschooling Carrie, so at the very least, somebody stepped in on her behalf at some point. Though you'd think, given they knew enough that Margaret's homeschooling was considered harmful, they would have outright judged Margaret unfit. That said, it's entirely possible Margaret was simply judged unqualified to continue Carrie's education.
- This Is Your Brain on Evil: This interpretation of Carrie White is well aware of what she's doing during the Prom Massacre, and intentionally targets her tormentors. The adrenaline rush she gets while killing her enemies fills her with glee, but once it wears off, she is horrified by her actions. The only reason she kills her mother is out of self-defense, and she is subsequently mortified by her actions.
- Together in Death: Nicki and Lizzy are holding hands as Carrie holds them down with her powers to be trampled to death. Carrie destroys her house and has it crumble above her, wanting to die with her mother.
- Too Dumb to Live: Chris and Billy trying to run Carrie down in this version. Sure, as the road is cracking up and you see an angry blood-drenched telekinetic coming for you, trying to murder her is going to work great. Even worse is that after Carrie kills Billy by stopping the car and making his body suffer the backlash is that she hesitates on doing the same to Chris since Chris is reacting the same way to Billy's death that Carrie did to Tommy's. Rather than take the chance to run, beg, or apologize, Chris's response is to try to run down Carrie again. She dies as well thanks to shattering windshield glass and running into a gas station.
- Trailers Always Spoil: The 2013 version makes use of It Was His Sled to show plenty of footage from the prom, including when the blood is poured on Carrie. This example may be a bit justified, as the book and film have been around for so long and referenced in pop culture so many times that hiding the climax would have proved pointless.
- Trauma Button: Strongly implied. Freddy (the school photographer) is the only person Carrie directly targets despite him always being nice to her, whereas everyone else she killed directly were bullies and assholes. As her first humiliation involved Chris filming her Freak Out and uploading it to the internet, as well as said video being played right as she's covered in blood, it's likely she thought he was recording her at the prom massacre in order to upload it and humiliate her further.
- Unreliable Narrator: Despite Chris's father appearing to realize that she was behind the shower prank, Chris says in the next scene that he's still suing the school over it. It's unclear if she's telling the truth or not.
- Unstable Powered Woman: Carrie is a very sweet, borderline angelic character who shows kindness to everyone... until she discovers telekinesis and uses it to push back at anyone who hurts her, burning down her school, house, and entire town.
- Wham Line: “It’s a girl.”
- What Happened to the Mouse?: Principal Morton’s fate is left unknown during prom, Kenny Garson’s fate is also unknown. George and Erika are implied to have survived the prom massacre (George was killed off in the original script but the scene does not appear in the final version).
- Wounded Gazelle Gambit: Chris tries to get her friends to do this to get out of detention.Chris: Someone could die of dehydration! Tina — you have a heart condition, right?
- You Can See That, Right?: Heather, who was maliciously laughing at Carrie, at prom asks her boyfriend, "Are you seeing this?" when Carrie begins making the blood on her body levitate. What happens next leaves little room for doubt.