The timing of this film feels sort of perfect, really. Clowns have been in for quite a while now so it made sense to put a film like this out. I did have concerns going in as to whether the whole clown thing had been over done, I mean even American Horror Story looks like it’s going to have to rely on people’s fear of clowns in its new season, well, that and Donald Trump. There was also a fear that this was just a cash grab, rehashing another Stephen King adaptation with the same results as the original. However there was a lot of hope with this remake, it broke records online when the trailer dropped and the marketing campaign has been nothing less than stellar.
As a horror film, something I will always give credit for is getting straight to it (no pun intended). Pennywise pops up within the first 10 minutes and the story gets going very quickly. The film is faced paced throughout and something is always happening.
Another thing I obviously have to give credit for in a horror film, is the horror. IT pretty much nails it. It doesn’t overdue it on the gore, it barley uses cliches and it actually shows the sort of things that the theme promises. Pennywise definitely has a huge part to play in this. I originally thought that I wouldn’t find this version of Pennywise as unnerving as the original as this one looked as though it was trying to be scary. In truth, it’s not so much his appearance but the way he acts, moves and talks. It’s just so unsettling.
In terms of what I didn’t like, I’d have to say that there were times when I think the writers held Pennywise back a bit. There were moments when he could of easily killed a few of the kids but just ended up stalling instead. Maybe Pennywise was thinking, “well I’ve got about another 40 minutes so I might as well do some scary stuff to fill it”. The only other thing that was questionable was the CGI, the clown itself was fine, it was the other monsters he turned into that looked dodgy.
Child actors have been incredibly poor in recent years but this film definitely breaks that trend. The whole young cast performs here and have great chemistry. When you take a look at the dialogue it will seem very poor but when you give the lines to these kids, you’ll realise that they’re actually brilliant. Yes, the dialogue is stupid and silly but so are kids. Kids don’t talk like adults and the dialogue really helps establish that.
In what is a dying genre, IT stands out and actually delivers on its promises. Hopefully more horror films will learn from IT and try to get the genre back on track. Overall, I loved IT, I never once switched off and felt I got everything I wanted.