I’m in the midst of compsing, part of which entails writing copious amounts about gender/sexuality in Carrie (1976). And while rewatching the film’s opening shower scene for the umpteenth time, I noticed something strange: Carrie has a key on a string around her neck. So I’m wondering: why? Having just written all about Cat People and The Haunting, two films where keys play huge roles, I’m tempted to ascribe some symbolic significance to it, but I can’t think of anything. And why would Carrie even have a key at all? Her mother supervises every single aspect of her life, and seems unlikely to trust her with the ability to lock or unlock anything; furthermore, I don’t remember anything about a key in Stephen King’s novel.
Given how meticulously selected the props, costuming, and set design in Carrie are, I feel like there must be a reason for this, but it’s not coming to me. Thus, I go to you, the reader: have any ideas? Why is this key so important that Carrie must wear it in the shower? Any suggestions would be appreciated. In other news, analyzing this scene reminds me of just how scrawny and anguished Sissy Spacek looks. Carrie may have its faults, but her she’s damn near perfect. Those little, fast-moving eyes just get to me every time; they’re more powerful than any single line of dialogue in the movie.