IT (2017) Reviewed

‘You’ll float too’

Skimming through my previous posts, I haven’t written a movie review in a while. I’ve gone to the cinemas regularly, but I’ve also been branching out to other subjects. This time I’ll review the biggest blockbuster of the month, IT. Based on Stephen King’s tome, it’s hard to believe that this is the first big screen adaptation of the terrifying book. 

Shorter version

Before I could begin, pls note that I could give you a longer version of this review. Yet, from what I’ve seen, a short version would suffice. There has been a big buildup to the film. The trailers were catchy, and left a lot to be explored. People wondered whether the big screen adaptation would cleave closely to the novel. The local cinemas have even offered late night ‘fright sessions’. There were also at least a dozen showings of IT during the first week in some cineplexes. On another level, evil clowns have been sighted wrecking havoc in the U.S. since last year. Police are investigating whether said clown attacks are premeditated or part of the pre-release entertainment.

So how did it fare? It was okay; nothing out of this world. Yes horror movies can get ear splitting but there are some that let the creepiness do its magic. This was not one of those types. At some points, the bangs and screeches creeped me out more than the blood and gore. The plot was good, a coming of age turn straight out of the 80s. Friendship, love, school dynamics, and family relations are all covered here. There is incest, abuse, and bullying too. In one two-hour episode, the movie deals with more tough themes than a regular flick. 

Deepest fears

There is also Pennywise the dancing clown, the titular IT. He lives on their fears and returns after 27 year hibernations. The main troupe consists of all school outcasts, 8 students who grapple with their own troubles. From an asthmatic kid to a black teenager, from stutterer Bill to the ‘new kid’, each battles their own demons. Pennywise exploits these fears. For instance, in the opening sequence, Bill had a younger brother who got lost after playing with his paper boat in the rain. Bill would never believe that his brother was dead. Years later, he is confronted by his dead sibling. Who could forget the scene: ‘You’ll float too! You’ll float too!’ 

Did they became the masters of their own fears? Banding together, did they manage to outsmart and ultimately vanquish Pennywise? Will they all come out in one piece, after the scariest ride of their lives? Personally, I think all the hoopla around the movie was nothing but sound and fury. Yes, that’s my final verdict: given the amount of promotion, the movie per se was disappointing. Other critics may be of a different opinion, as evidenced by the picture’s overwhelming review scores. For me though this was merely adequate; an okay film. As we prepare for the second and final sequel, I’ll leave that for others to try…if they dare. 

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