Jean-Paul’s Rating: 4/5 stars
Bottom Line; All the hairs on my body stood up on end multiple times! Lots of nostalgia for us older folks. This was only Part 1, though they don’t say such until the very end.
“It” is two horror stories rolled up into one. The first features an incredibly creepy clown determined to suck children down into the sewers. The second features said children navigating the horrors of growing up. I’m not entirely sure which is more scary.
The thing I like about Stephen King novels in general and this movie in particular is that he often takes the horrors of everyday life and then makes it worse. No more is it more apparent than in his coming of age horror stories like “It”. Navigating childhood is rough even with good parents. With bad parents, it can be a nightmare. I think King focuses on those children of nightmares because those who live through nightmares are more realistically equipped to handle the clownish nightmare that is Pennywise. With so many horrific adults and bullies in their life, what’s an extra horrific clown thrown into the mix? And, oh my goodness, is Pennywise a nightmare! I don’t think I’ve had all the hairs on my body stand up on end this much in a movie since “The Exorcist”.
For those of you who saw the Netflix series “Stranger Things” and related to the children, you’ll recognize a lot of the feelings of coming-of-age nostalgia in the movie. Especially if you are, shall I say, of the dorky persuasion. In fact, I wonder if “Stranger Things” was paying homage to “It”. The makeup of the group of children was pretty spot on between the two. “It” definitely has more of a sexual bent to it because much of the nightmares of growing up a female are being perved on by adult males, but there’s also the healthy boys discovering girls part well represented.
I had warning of it going in and I’d like to pass that warning along to you, my five viewers. This is part one of the movie. That’s not a bad thing, but it could be annoying to not know it in the end. Fear not, though, this is a fully contained movie and by the end, the nightmare is over. Or is it? Of course it’s not, there’s a part two!
Stephen King movies are a crap shoot. For every “Misery” there’s five “Pet Sematary”s. This one is a definite winner, though. Tense, eerie, creepy. Major props to both Bill Skarsgård who plays Pennywise and the editors who, for some scenes, I don’t know how they had the patience to splice that crap together. Simply amazing. Go see this movie if you’re not a chicken.