Last night I saw the new IT movie and I have to admit, it was actually a lot better than I thought it was going to be.
For any of those who aren’t familiar with the Stephen King novel, it’s a story about seven kids (known as the Losers Club) who are tormented by a being who preys on its victims by exploiting and feeding off their fears. In this case the being “It” usually takes on the form of a clown, in order to attract young children. The novel is told in two different time periods; the first takes place during 1957-1958 when the Losers are young kids and the second part jumps 27 years to 1984-1985 when they're adults.
Even though the film tweaks the year (it now starts in October 1988), the story still kicks off in Derry, Maine with the gruesome death of Bill’s younger brother, Georgie. While outside during a rainstorm, Georgie starts chasing a paper boat that Bill made him and it eventually gets washed down a storm drain. As he’s looking into the drain, he sees two glowing eyes and a man dressed as a clown introduces himself as “Pennywise the Dancing Clown.” The clown offers Georgie a balloon and as Georgie starts to leave Pennywise offers him his boat back and when he reaches for it, Pennywise severs his arm and drags him into the sewer.
Jump to eight months later in June 1989, Bill is still reeling from Georgie’s disappearance and believes that if Georgie was sucked down the storm drain then his body may have washed up in the wasteland called The Barrens. He recruits his friends Richie, Eddie and Stanley to help him check it out, but while they don’t find anything of Georgie, they do find a shoe that belongs to another missing girl from town. While this is going on, we also see the new kid in town Ben reading up on the history of Derry and discovers the town has been plagued by unexplained tragedies and missing children for centuries, each incident happening every 27 years. After experiencing a Pennywise-induced scare at the library, Ben flees and gets caught by the town menace, the mullet-having psycho Henry and his equally charming gang of miscreants. He’s able to get away, but not before Henry carves an “H” into his stomach, and he stumbles upon Bill and his group who rush to help him. While getting medical supplies to try and help Ben, the gang run into Beverly who helps them steal the items since they don’t have enough money, and they each go their separate ways with plans to meet up the next day. The following day, they find Henry and his goons tormenting a homeschooled boy named Mike, and intervene by throwing rocks at them. And thus, the Losers Club has its final member.
A few weeks later, after each kid has had a terrifying run in with Pennywise, they all start to realize something is going on in town and they’re the only ones who are able to stop it. Thanks to all the information Ben dug up, they’re able to determine It uses the sewers around town to move about and that the epicenter of everything is, of course, an old busted down house with a well in the basement. So, the gang go there to confront It and in the process Eddie breaks his arm, but Beverly is able to hurt It by impaling it through the head, forcing it to retreat. This incident causes a rift between the group and they all go their separate ways. However, the group is forced back together on a rescue mission after Pennywise abducts Beverly. The boys go down the well in search of Beverly and find her floating (cue Pennywise/Georgie screaming “You'll float too!”) in a catatonic state in It’s lair, but she is brought back after being kissed by Ben. It, assuming the form of Georgie, tries to trick Bill but fails and Bill shoots him in the head. This leads to It attacking the whole gang, eventually taking Bill hostage offering freedom for the rest as long as they leave Bill with him. After some wise cracking by Ritchie (“Welcome to the Losers Club, asshole!”), the gang frees Bill and begin to beat the ever lovin’ crud outta Pennywise. Despite It trying to use the groups fears against them, Pennywise is ultimately wounded and cornered by the Losers. Bill tells Pennywise that they know It needs their fears to survive, but now they’re starving it by making It afraid of them. Knowing he’s defeated and holds no power over the kids anymore, Pennywise escapes into a deep pit. After It leaves, Bill finds Georgie’s tattered raincoat and breaks down as he finally comes to terms with what happened to his little brother. A month later, Beverly recounts what she can remember from her time being catatonic, and tells them she saw them all fighting It again but this time as adults. The Losers then make a blood pact to return to Derry in 27 years if It returns and destroy the creature for good.
All in all, I was impressed with the film. I thought it had a really nice balance of horror and humor and the kids absolutely made the movie. All the kids crushed it, they were all just so good. Especially Finn Wolfhard, he was perfect as Ritchie and had me laughing pretty much every time he opened his mouth. I don’t know if anyone can top Tim Curry in anything, but Bill Skarsgard does a top notch job as Pennywise and he somehow made Goofy’s hot dog dance something I will never be able to look at the same way ever again. I can’t wait for the next for the next chapter to come out.
Has anything seen it? What’d you think? Lemme know!