When I began my reading frenzy, I discovered Stephen King's first published book called "Carrie." Even when his other books were made available, I always remembered and admired his first. Also in 1976, Barry Manilow released a song called "Weekend in New England." Every time I heard the whimsical lyrics and its moving orchestration, I was reminded of the movie. Those thoughts led me to eventually make this video. "Sue's Hope" is a tribute to the collaboration that occurred between these two men, even though they were unaware of it.
Thank you Stephen and Barry.
Last night, 10/22/15, my dear daughter surprised me with movie tickets to see the film "Carrie." We saw the flick at the Alamo Drafthouse Cinema in Yonkers, NY.
She knows that "Carrie" continues to be my favorite horror movie of all time. This is the1976 version, based on the book by Stephen King, directed by Brian De Palmer, with the role of Carrie played by Sissy Spacek.
Movie Poster Advertisement in 1976
There are some marked differences between the book and the film but De Palmer effectively captured the flavor of total confusion one feels during adolescence. Add the tastefully done nude scenes, Carrie’s growing telekinetic powers and of course, the horror sequences and you have a well conceived plan to lure you in and then scare your pants off.
It was noticeable that some of the “teenagers” were a bit on the older side but this was the only down side of the movie. The characters that Piper Laurie, John Travolta, William Katt and Amy Irving played are worth a mention but Sissy Spacek’s excellent rendition of the Carrie character (she is such a good actress) combined with the film's serene and haunting soundtrack, pulls you into the film’s innocence and eventual tragedy.
(As ridiculous as it might seem to run a spoiler alert for a movie that’s been out since 1976, there are those who have not seen the movie yet.
I don't want to spoil it for them).
Personal Note- This writer has always been an avid horror watcher. I enjoy the rush of a good scare. I like to laugh and joke with friends but I handle myself conservatively while in all public movie theaters. I was not prepared for what I was about to witness, the first time that I saw the movie.
At the end of the movie, there is a dream sequence that is calming for the character Sue Snell and the audience. The set up is, Carrie has killed her mother and herself. You figure this brings closure to the movie because the main character has died. Sue, being the only survivor of the high school fire is, of course, traumatized. During her dream, she places flowers at the empty lot where her “friend” Carrie has died.
The photography is hazy and the music is serene and tranquil. To me, the movie was obviously winding down, as Sue was giving her tribute to Carrie. As Sue knelt down, I was putting my arm in my jacket. My eyes were still on the screen as I waited for the credits to scroll down. Sue was about to place the bouquet on the ground, when Carrie’s bloody hand reached out from between the rocks and grabbed Sue’s wrist. I half stood up and screamed “Nooooo!!”
Soon after this, Sue woke and the dream (and the movie) ended.
I remember back in 1976 that others in the audience screamed in horror but no one screamed as loudly as I did. If anyone told me that I was going to react this way in a crowded movie theater, I would have said they were crazy. I was genuinely scared!
Eerie movie fact – Sissy Spacek was actually buried under the ground in order to do this scene.
**End of Spoiler Alert**
Horror movies after Carrie have used the “unexpected added ending” while others rely heavily on gore and special effects. Regardless of when this movie was made or how often you see it, Carrie can still bring you to the edge of your seat and then knock you off it. As my daughter, Danielle, has heard me say many times before, Carrie will always be a masterpiece of horror film making at it’s best.
I wrote the short story Poor Interfaces knowing that for some, the subject of people with intellectual disabilities would be a touchy one. In the fictional story, Paul has outburst issues and his caregiver, Russell, assists him with this through the use of cranial implants. This innovative intervention has become the accepted science of the day but a sequence of events occurs that cause changes for everyone involved.
Those that are not familiar with the population, first think of the cute Down syndrome child at a Special Olympic event, that they’ve seen on television. The attitude that this group or related subject matter is too delicate to talk about comes more from those that aren’t as well informed as they could be. Any that have worked in the field and/or those with a friend or family member who has a disability, understand that achievement levels, diagnosis and on-going struggles are unique for each individual. There is no such thing as a cut in stone stereotype that applies to all who are intellectually disabled. The reality is that this population is as diverse as any group of people as are their wants and needs.
After being a part of these individuals’ lives for more than thirty years, I’ve gained a wealth of knowledge and a unique perspective. This sometimes-emotional but always rewarding journey, led me to write Poor Interfaces. From the staff that deals with daily hands-on tasks, to those that have administrative and clinical responsibilities, respect and kindness is the common factor, which will lead to lasting advancements.
On the science side, there will always be advancements for those with disabilities. What we think of today as science fiction may very well be commonplace within a decade or less. Regardless of the nuances, all advances must be tempered with the need to see each person as an individual. That way, there’s less chance to lose focus on the reason we are trying to help.
If anything, there needs to be a lot more stories about the intellectually disabled. As long as the subject matter is handled respectfully, the increased exposure can only further educate and enrich us all.
Lloyd A. Green
Poor Interfaces - New sci-fi/horror short story about a disabled adult and the person who cares for him. Just how connected should two people be?
Read Poor Interfaces
Alex and his synthetic partner attempt to solve the possible murder/suicide at the far away space station. Rolfe deals flawlessly with the difficult line between how human is machine and how machine-like are we all.
Great short story.
Just finished reading Shock Totem #9. I became an instead fan of this unique horror publication.
I highly recommend it.
The fear of death has always haunted us, ever since we became conscious of our own species and existence. Life after death is a recurring topic in many aspects of our lives. If we die and become ghosts, that basically means immortality in a certain way. And being immortal sounds like something supernatural, a scene from a sci-fi movie. Turning into a ghost after death would be similar to uncovering the much-desired fountain of youth. But is there a truth behind this so-called supernatural phenomenon?
Before we move on, let’s just say that this article, as the word ‘consider’ in the title indicates, isn’t trying to turn you into a ghost-believer, because that would be pretentious if said out loud. We’re simply trying to point you towards that direction by showing you some unexplained real-life examples.
Let’s dig in.
Although scientific explanation for this also exists, namely that these are just short circuits in your brain playing tricks with you (or at least with what’s left of you), there are some other bizarre things going on here that haven’t been exactly explained. Namely, in a staggering number of cases, people who had near-death experiences on an operating table were able to detach themselves from their body and look around. After they had woken up, they were able to recount every single detail about the people in the waiting room, what they were doing, etc. They even knew what the doctors had been talking about while performing the surgery. Since the brain is clinically dead at that point, it is kind of odd that it can memorize things so well, and even odder – that it can travel around. That’s more than just brain playing tricks with you, right?
Although this one seems worn out, but instances of weird things happening in houses are real, with numerous eye-witnesses of poltergeists and objects moving. Surely, not all of the people are crazy? This is a phenomenon occurring independently all across the globe, so it’s not something one could attribute to a Hollywood trend. These sightings are usually connected to some gruesome deaths and troubled souls who have been molested or mistreated during life. For example, the Boone Hall Plantation in Charleston is said to be inhabited by former slaves.
Still more to learn
Scientific evidence for ghosts are unclear. In order not to spread panic, scientists and medical experts tend to disprove the existence of something ‘supernatural’. But it’s only recently that we’ve started studying these phenomena. There’s a lot more to learn, and who knows what we’ll uncover.
I enjoy the mystery that writing a good story offers. Effective writing has occurred when the reader is forced to quickly look over their shoulder.