IT – 2017
IT is the most recent adaptation of the heavily cult-like affiliated novel written by Stephen King (who is recognised as ‘one of the greatest storytellers of our time’ by guardian and is a personal favourite of my own). The story follows a small group of outcast 10-12 year olds who face a creature that reemerges from the shadows to prey on the town’s children every 27 years. The band of misfitted children must find a way to destroy the evil, that most commonly takes form as Pennywise the dancing clown, even if It can shapeshift into their greatest fears.
The plot for the 2017 adaption of IT was interesting to say the least. While including a storyline very similar to the novel and it’s ideas, the film was simultaneously created to be it’s own seperate unique story, which I might add, they did very well. The novel and miniseries have a series of flash-backs and flash-forwards throughout the story which allows for the sense of not just physical but also emotional disorientation for the audience, but the steadily timed storyline of the 2017 adaption still keeps the eeriness of the plot which should be commended on and discussed more. It was unfortunate, I’ll have to admit, that some of the more iconic scenes from the previous adaptions were not included but beside that factor the plot didn’t stray too far from the original text.
Explanation of rating:
I thought this movie deserved this rating for many reasons. One reason being that besides IT being a horror movie, the film was still impressively created. From the cinematography to the consistent plot-line, the 2017 adaption could even be described as artistic and was definitely an improvement from the gore-filled schmuck that are excuses for movies made previously. Let’s safely say, I’m not going to name names but I’m sure one of these movies popped into your head. Another reason being that every person that I have talked to about the movie have all had a different experience. Personally, I didn’t find the movie particularly traumatising as some others did but I was in complete awestruck from Scarsgård’s performance while watching the first time so that could be a reason for that. That being said, one of the my girls who accompanied me to see the film originally, who I’ve known to be one of the biggest horror movie buffs out there, had trouble sleeping for the next few days.
Why/what I like and dislike of the film:
Like: I really enjoyed the fact, as I stated previously, that everybody had a different experience when seeing this film. I enjoyed how they explored actual film techniques and simultaneously recreated the story but made something individually unique enough to be considered solely their own. I enjoyed the easter egg moments (easter egg scavenger hunt pun not entirely intended but lets leave that there) for the fans from the other adaptions. And, finally, I thought the cast was outstanding, especially because half of them have hardly hit puberty but were talented enough to create such distinctions in their characters.
Dislike: One of my personal hatreds in a movie, book or TV series is a cliffhanger and lets just say that chapter 1/chapter 2 business sent me over the railing at the cinema, especially because it would ultimately intend the lack of the original kid actors in the sequel which disappointed me as I really enjoyed their performances, but I guess that will be a topic for the review of the sequel. Not that I want to leave you on a cliffhanger or anything. I was a little disappointed to see that the storyline strayed from the original time period as it was set in the 80s instead of the 50s but that could easily be argued that that was intended for originality. Overall, I was very excited to be ‘utterly terrified’, as everyone had said, by the movie but I saw it mostly as comic relief. Don’t get me wrong that isn’t necessarily a bad thing and many others did get frightened by it but I guess it was just a shame that I couldn’t experience it as well.
Although I went into more detail of my dislikes of the film then my likes but overall, the creators of the film should be commended.
Personally, I loved this film and I’ve yet to meet someone who didn’t have a positive impression of the movie first hand so yes I would highly recommend this movie. The kids’ acting was extremely impressive for their age and Bill Skarsgård’s interpretation of the clown was both utterly terrifying, comically fascinating and confusingly charming. The character was in the internet’s limelight for a long time as people debated on the attraction or disgust of Pennywise (Daddywise as the media took a liking in calling him). But, in my opinion, that argument was a needle in the haystack of discussions to be had of the movie
I would recommend this movie to not only fans of the original IT miniseries and novel or fans of other Stephen King stories but also anyone who seeks to find a more artistic flare of creating movies as this is one of the first horror movies I’ve personally seen that had a clear storyline, characters and the elements needed to create any decent film. I would also recommend this to people who enjoy ‘coming of age’ films as it explores a lot of key elements of not only childhood friendship but also the transition to adulthood and facing personal nightmarish fear.
To conclude, it is good to keep in mind before seeing this movie that it does contain disturbing themes and implications as it is still supposed to be a horror movie at the end of the day. That being said, this could be a personal judgement, but I didn’t find the movie scary at the slightest. There were a couple of jumpscares that got me but overall I was so enthralled by the storyline and the thrill of what comes next that I forgot that it was supposed to be a scary movie. That, and the personalities and some of comments made by the characters were hilarious. (Go blow your Dad you mullet-wearing asshole!).
I hope you enjoyed my review and the film! Comment your opinion on the film in the comments or my review! And check out my recommendations!