Year : 2017
Director : Andre Muschietti
Cast : Bill Skarsgard, Jaeden Lieberher, Finn Wolfhard.
Wait, Stephen King?
Yes, the King of Horror. Hold on, isn’t it supposed to be Alfred Hitchcock?
Hitchcock might be considered as the king of horror and suspense in the world of film industry, but King has his own place in the world of horror and thriller novels.
“IT” was the 22nd book of King, which was written in 1986. As some other books he wrote, “It” took place in Derry, Maine.
Derry is one of King’s fictional places, along with “Castle Rock” and “Jerusalem’s Lot” in his other books. As for Maine, it is the place where King was born and spent his entire childhood.
“It” began with the scene of a boy named Georgie. Georgie was given a paperboat made by his older brother Bill. Running happily on a rainy day, Georgie took the paper boat outside.
When his paper boat went into a sewer, Georgie, unexpectedly encountered a mysterious clown who introduced himself as “Pennywise, the dancing clown”.
The chat between Pennywise and Georgie in that scene is probably one of the scariest chat I have ever seen. It gave me goosebump to see how the clown smiled and stared with his sparkling eyes.
“I am not supposed to take stuff from strangers.”
“Oh well, I am Pennywise, the dancing clown! Pennywise? Yes. Meet Georgie. Georgie meet Pennywise.”
“Now, we aren’t strangers, are we?”
And what happened next, is the thing that made me realized, Good God! this film is so NOT FOR CHILDREN.
The story then, moved couple of months later, where we can see Bill and his fellow friends on the last day of school before summer holiday. Bill was still mourning because of the disappearance of Georgie. Bill was trying to find Georgie even though his own father asked him to let it go.
Beside Bill, we will meet another three boys. Richie ; who was really chatty, Eddie who believed that he had asthma and allergy and had to live healthy life, as what his mother told him to do. Stanley, a Jewish boy who just had his first bar mitzvah (and whose dad was a Jewish preacher). Together, they called themselves “gang of Losers”.
Later, this gang had three more members; Beverly, Ben and Mike. Beverly was a girl who was always bullied by other girls at school; because many people believed that she has had sex with lots of guys.
Ben was the new kid on the block (literally, same as the band that he liked to listen to), did not have any friend and liked to hang out in the library. And Mike, a colored boy, raised by his grandfather after his parents died in a fire.
You may think that this film reminds you a lot of “stranger things”, a TV series from Netflix. Even one of the losers gang actors was the same actor played in that series.
“Stranger Things” and “Super 8”, are two different films I suddenly remembered when I saw this. Yet, since Stephen King wrote this in 1986, it would be fair enough to say that King was the first, and those other films were the later.
The Losers Gang began to experience weird things. One similar thing was, all the things they saw were something that they were afraid of. Does it ring a bell? Yes. It is like Freddy Krueger, in “Nightmare on elm Street”. Funny is, Krueger film was played in the movie theatre in one of the scenes here.
Bill and his friends soon realized that all the things they had and all the disappearance of Derry’s inhabitants (especially children) were because of “It”, the scary clown that has been haunting the city for years.
Through the research Ben did in the library, they found out that the clown was always appeared every 27 years to feed upon children.
“Jeepers Creepers”! That was what I thought. Damn! King has given ideas to many filmmakers.
Another thing that reminded me of different film was Harry Potter. The way “It” manifested itself in the form of frightening monsters (depends on what makes us scared) is so much similar to the “Boggart” in Harry Potter. J.K Rowling must have read King’s books before she started to write.
The rest of the film was following the common patterns. The gang had to struggle to defeat the clown.
Then, what makes this film is different?
I guess, it is because of the drama. We were told the story from the beginning, layers upon layers. The director was patient enough to feed the details from the start. That is why, toward the last 20 minutes, we were captivated on our seat, experienced mix of feelings. I felt sorry for Bill who was always missing Georgie. I got depressed by the fact that there was something going on between Beverly and her dad (even between Henry and his dad, and Henry was the bully!).
Then, I fell for the friendship among these seven teenagers. How they loved and protect each other.
I even cried in some scenes. Damn it.
This is horror film.
No, this is drama.
This is one hell of a horror film.
And I did not even complain with the history of Derry, who was exactly the clown and where it came from. You would know if you have read the book, though.
Overall, this is a different type of horror movie. And I like it. A lot.
Hope you guys will like it too.
And please, please. Do not bring your children. The sadism is pretty disturbing.
*hands-down to Bill Skarsgard who has made Pennywise became frightening spine-chilling monster!*