It Review, A Surprising Thriller Not About a Killer Clown!
IT has a new film adaptation of the classic Stephen King novel. Many people remember the 1990's version with Tim Curry, and fans of the original wondered if the new movie would live up to expectation. "It" certainly has. Ha-ha. Now a lot of people have nostalgic, and fond memories of the old adaptation mainly because they remember watching as children and being terrified of Pennywise the clown. Many can agree that version, which was a TV movie, not a lot of people know or remember that, was a bit of a let down. Even Stephen King himself talks about how he was disappointed with that version of his story, minus the terrific performance from Time Curry.
IT was never a horror story about a killer clown. Yes it does have one, and it is the most memorable thing about it, film or book version. In essence though, the story is of growing up, coming of age, and facing your fears. Children are put into situations where they have to make tough decisions, work together, and escape their stern or abusive parents. They even lose their virginity's which is not in any of the two film versions, because how do you film children having sex? Oh no. That would be too strange. Think of the out cry!
The killer clown, played wonderfully this time by, Bill Skarsgard, is a representation of all the children's fears as he manifests into something that scares them the most. Pennywise simply makes the story more interesting by being a cosmic entity that likes to eat people, children mostly because they are the easiest to frighten. It is simply a fantasy element in an otherwise "simple" coming of age tale.
The film is gorgeously shot, and the children are real and relatable. Their are hints of The Goonies and Stand By Me which is another Stephen King story as most of you may know. Then as I mentioned before, Bill Skarsgard is perfect as Pennywise the dancing clown. Who comes across more of an animal who is looking to feed rather than a demonic creature which is represented as such by, Tim Curry. The film however is not scary. You don't leave the theater disturbed or afraid of the dark. Its main weakness is the cheap jump scares that is designed to jolt your nerves and get you to involuntarily scream, but it never really leaves a lasting impact. This is do more to the fact that the filmmakers have chosen to embrace the books true meaning. The clown stuff is just there for fun, although the film is rated R, there are many unsettling moments, tough images to look at, and twisted joke. So just because I used the word fun, doesn't mean you can take your kids.
The book is split into two parts. So this movie, as you may have already guessed if you haven't seen it, will have a sequel. The original 1990's version did the same thing, and now it is coming out that the second one will be a lot darker, and it will focus more on the supernatural elements of the story. I' am intrigued to see how they will approach, but for now though I will just appreciate what they have done with the first chapter in this epic tale. The trick to enjoying this movie is not to go in thinking you will see a horror film. That is not what you'll get. If you can get that out of your mind then I'm sure you will be pleasantly surprised.