Official Plot Synopses Rise for "Carrie,' 'Evil Dead' Remakes

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Horror fans will get a double dose of déjà vu next spring when remakes of both "Carrie" and "The Evil Dead" hit theaters. Today, however, those same fans got a bit of an appetizer in the way of official synopses for both films.

Kimberly Peirce's re-interpretation of "Carrie" will drop into theaters first on March 15th, and today's press release sounds expectedly familiar. The film will concern "Carrie White (Chloë Grace Moretz), a shy girl outcast by her peers and sheltered by her deeply religious mother (Julianne Moore), who unleashes telekinetic terror on her small town after being pushed too far at her senior prom."

No surprises there, but some room for nuance obviously exists; after all, just about everyone involved has given the typical platitudes about how this film will hew more closely to Stephen King's original novel. Plus, Peirce will be bringing a female lens to this story for the first time, which is exciting and appropriate.

"The Evil Dead" will follow about a month later when it's unleashed on April 12th. Its official synopsis also offers more of the same since this re-imagining will once again feature " five twenty-something friends" who "become holed up in a remote cabin" before discovering "a Book of the Dead [that] unwittingly summon[s] up dormant demons living in the nearby woods, which possess the youngsters in succession until only one is left intact to fight for survival."

Again, that's the skeletal outline of the original film as well, though eagle-eyed readers should already be aware of a few wrinkles here. It was previously reported that one of characters is facing a substance abuse problem and that the cabin retreat is actually an intervention, plus other reports have indicated that Jane Levy will be the final girl this time (whereas the original had a final boy in Bruce Campbell, who eventually took more punishment than Tom the cat).

This redux is arguably the more intriguing of the two projects; whereas "Carrie" has already seen two screen interpretations (plus a late-90s sequel), this will be the first time an "Evil Dead" film has been helmed by someone other than Sam Raimi, and the film is likely to have a bigger budget than the original three films combined.

While that doesn't automatically mean it'll be superior (one could argue that the limited nature of the originals was a boon that led to a "lightning in a bottle" quality), it does open the door for different possibilities. Plus, like "Carrie," it'll also be arriving with a feminine touch, as Diablo Cody punched up the script.

It's easy to be cynical about remakes, especially when it pertains to this genre, which has seen no shortage of its great films pillaged for a quick buck over the past decade. Both of these, however, seem to be arriving from unique filmmaking perspectives, so some cautious optimism isn't out of order.

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