I really hate clowns. And I hate the person who invented clowns. Clowns happen to be the worst, just the worst. Well maybe not THE worst. I think the worst thing in the world is old people breath. Am I right?
Here's the thing about IT. I've never seen the whole thing before. It's like my brain gets sucked into the beginning and all of its Pennywise glory but then because it's too long, my mind wanders off in search of something more useful that I can do with my time. Like, eat, sleep or file my nails. In fact, I've seen the same hour and a half of IT about 20 times and still until quite recently, never knew how it ended. I never knew that the giant spider people talked about was real. I never knew the outcome of everything. And most importantly, I never knew how many different ways Pennywise could scare the shit out of me.
As far as clowns go, Pennywise is probably the scariest. I still refuse to believe that Tim Curry is hiding inside there. I will believe until my dying day that that is a real clown-monster with an appetite for ripping children's arms out of their sockets. It just seems like the practical thing to do. One of my most memorable moments of being scared out of my wits was watching that scene where Pennywise comes to life in that old photograph. It was an unexplainable moment of total fear that only worsened once Harry Potter came out and reinvigorated the moving photographs phenomena. Why is Pennywise so scary? Do I really need to ask that? Clowns are scary period. But a clown with razor sharp teeth and a creepy unidentifiable accent? FUCK THAT.
IT focuses on a group of kids known as the Losers Club. This is quite fitting as you will see, although in my opinion the real scope of their loser tendencies does not flourish until they reach adulthood, but more on that later. The Losers Club all have one thing in common. They have all encountered the terrifying monster Pennywise the Clown. An evil clown that embodies whatever it is that the children fear the most. IT follows the group through their childhood, where they temporarily banish the beast away, to their adulthood when they find that the monster is back. Thanks to a pact they made as child, the Losers Club must form again and destroy IT for good.
I have this problem with TV miniseries based on Stephen King novels. My problem is that they kind of annoy me. Yes, a lot of Stephen King's novels tend to be HUGE long novels, epics even. But in my opinion, when these huge novels are adapted into miniseries---they tend to fall flat. Why? Because, people feel that EVERYTHING needs to be included. This is a problem for me. Both IT and Salem's Lot suffer the misfortune of having some truly memorable and brilliant scenes, lost amongst 2 and a half more hours of boringness. The difference between a movie and miniseries is that the events in the movie have to be contained in that hour and a half (sometimes 2 hour) running time. With a miniseries, there is so much extra, so many unnecessary plot details that the whole thing becomes bogged down. Of course, the idea of the miniseries is that it is spread out in increments which I'm sure would have solved this problem. But miniseries on DVDs do nothing t0 help this.
What I'm getting at here is that IT has its moments. And these are amazing moments of pure fear and thrills. These moments however to me are all I really cared about. Once again, like how I felt after Salem's Lot, I feel that IT could actually benefit from a remake that does some major editing. Don't get all mad at me, it won't accomplish anything. IT is good, but it's not great. Some of the acting and a lot of the writing is not great. Plus, Bill Denbrough's ponytail and large mole really do nothing to help the situation at all.
I would also like to state for the record that IT makes as much sense as Phantasm and its sequels. There is so much glossed over in this, which is surprising seeing as how it's 3 and a half hours long. You would think that somewhere in there they could explain a little more about IT. I also wish that that thing about the adults somehow being in on everything really came to fruition. How awesome would it be, if IT acted as a Hot Fuzz type of plot, where the adults in the community were somehow the real cause of it all? Or SOMETHING awesome like that. We'll keep it in mind for the remake. I have a strong feeling that a remake of IT will act like The Shining. Keeping the important, the atmosphere of the novel but adjusting it to actually work as a film. I feel like one of the main reasons Stephen King adaptions ultimately fail is because people expect the novel. STOP DOING THAT! I'm guilty of it too at times, but when it comes down to it---you need to separate the book from the film.
Now, back to the Losers Club. Wow, what a bunch of losers huh? I mean as adults of course. I think if possible, they were actually way cooler as kids but what do I know? I used to wear high heeled jelly shoes. This band of adults though....really embarrassing. And again, I think it's mostly the writing but that little montage of Bill and Mike on the bike....embarrassing!
I would also like to add how irksome Pennywise is as something to be scared of. He's everywhere and he's always popping up whenever you least want him to. Not that there would ever be a good time to pop up but you know. And those balloons. I've never come across a film that instilled so much fear in its viewers by using balloons.
IT has done it though.
Overall, IT has its moments and I wish that all those moments could somehow be pooled together in one movie without it being 4 hours long. There's so many great scenes. The sewer scene with poor little Georgie, the old woman scene (which I had never seen before!),
the bursting blood bubble in the bathroom sink,
the moving photograph, the part where Ben makes out with Pennywise! I mean, there are A LOT of scary moments in IT, and tons of moments that have probably stuck with people for their whole lives. So when all is said and done, I can't knock IT too much can I? Sure, the spider scene is kind of ridiculous, and the ripping out of its vital organs seems a little over the top at best. But come on, Pennywise. PENNYWISE. The scariest clown in the whole world? Nothing can really beat that.
Side note: Did you know in the novel, after the kids escape and wound Pennywise the first time, all the boys take turns sleeping with Beverly? What the shit is that about?