Film (1999; vt Carrie 2). Red Bank Films/United Artists. Directed by Katt Shea. Produced by Paul Monash. Written by Rafael Moreu based on Carrie (1974) by Stephen King. Cast includes Emily Bergl, Amy Irving and Jason London. 104 minutes. Colour with some black-and-white scenes.
This film is a direct sequel to Brian De Palma's Carrie (1976), rather than a remake. It develops that Carrie White has a half-sister, Rachel Lang (Bergl), who was also the victim of a psychotic mother. Having been placed in a long series of foster-homes since she was approximately six years old, Rachel has landed as a teenager in yet another unhappy home. Her foster-parents' only interest in her is the money they earn for more or less looking after her. When Rachel is sixteen her best friend commits suicide by leaping off the school roof after being "scored" by one of the popular athletes, a football player, most of whom have made a game out of having Sex with as many young women as they can. Rachel herself is into Gothic sub-culture, and so is already an outsider. She still becomes the subject of one player's attentions: Jesse Ryan (London) has a change of heart, and begins to legitimately care for Lang.
Sue Snell (Irving, reprising her part from the original film) is now a counsellor at the school which replaced the one destroyed by Carrie White. Investigating, she discovers Rachel's heritage, and tries to prevent history from repeating itself, by helping Rachel control her telekinetic abilities which are starting to manifest themselves. Unfortunately, Ryan's friends (angered by his "betrayal" of them) help in a plot to lay a trap for the two, goaded on by their sadistic girlfriends, the "in-crowd" girls at the school. This eventually results in total humiliation for Rachel at a party to which she and Ryan have been maliciously invited. Realizing what will most likely happen, Snell hurries to the scene, but is too late – she is accidentally killed with an arrow from a spear-gun driven right between her eyes as Rachel slays her tormentors, dying herself as the house burns. Using the last of her power, she saves Ryan by throwing him clear.
While decidedly inferior to the 1976 Carrie, this revenge-fantasy film is reasonably well made and well acted for the most part. Anyone once treated as an outsider or ostracized for being "different" will relate a little (however hesitant to admit it) to Rachel's plight, even despite the concluding massacre. [GSt]
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