The film It instantly succeeded in catching the public’s eye. Last year’s all too familiar serial killing clowns trend – which even made its way to our very own TCU campus – allowed for the film to attain a large audience before even reaching theaters. Though the hype was undeniable, there was also an itch to see what the original Stephen King novel (which was later molded into a motion picture in 1990) would be transformed into when brought to today’s high definition, state-of-the-art theaters. The incredibly imaginative plot, that melted the hearts of many but shocked most, was reborn on September 8th, 2017 as a horrifying thriller. This R rated film, was directed by Andy Muschietti, who is most known for his 2013 horror film “Mama” and is rumored to be working on a sequel of It as director as well.
As a terror-enthusiast myself, I felt driven to watch the film soon after it was released. I will ensure to exclude any spoilers for those of you who are planning to check it out in the near future! The film uses incredibly imaginative visuals to grasp the attention of the viewers. The details are impeccable and the work invested into each of the scenes featuring our infamous villain were meticulously thought out and well designed. The film demonstrates incredible attention to each of the abnormal characteristics of the clown, including his carnivorous grin and innovative use of red lipstick. Muschietti not only makes heinous jester lifelike, but also incredibly creepy. It is also easy to say that the movie was cast very well. From the twisted, beastly jester to the paranoid hypochondriac preteen, each of the actors took their role to a level that truly allows the audience to engage and experience the chilling story.
My disappointment truly lied in both the pacing and the plot development of the film. While remaining fairly true to the original novel, as a horror movie it is essential that most of the film create a response, an emotion, or a sense of apprehension. However, there were many dull moments and overall it was a long trek to the climax of the action. It was an incredible story, yes, but not a terrifying one. The majority of the action panned over the last thirty minutes of the movie, while the earlier scenes seemed to be small building blocks for what was to come. (If you are trying incredibly hard to distance yourself from any kind of potential spoilers I suggest you stop reading here.) If you consider yourself impatient, this may not be the Netflix and chill choice for you. For those of you who prefer a more uplifting twist on a scary story, It will leave you feeling hopeful and buoyant. A beautiful friendship between several middle schoolers blossoms throughout the course of their summer adventure and their epic battle against something no adult could ever fathom. I hated that. It’s a horror film!
When you sit in that movie theater after dropping twenty-two fifty on a ticket and snacks, expecting to throw your popcorn onto the people behind you when startling in fear, and instead you barely flinch twice…how can you help yourself from feeling a little let down? The film had the potential to truly horrify and scare the audience, but from both my opinion and the reactions of my fellow movie fanatics in the theater beside me, it is easy to say that this may not be exactly what you would want to spend that extra cash on. I may never look at red balloons the same way, but I recommend patience. Watch this one at home once you can stream it for free, and flinch with the comfort of your own (much more affordable) microwave popcorn.