Following a summer movie season that Hollywood wants to quickly forget, it looks like it has a hit to kick off the fall.
“It,” the latest adaptation of the classic Stephen King novel, is an extremely entertaining studio horror movie that will make you laugh as much as jump in fear.
That’s the big takeaway from a movie that had some big shoes to fill, as it goes up against a previous adaptation, the 1990 two-night ABC made-for-TV movie that haunted anyone who grew up during that time. Tim Curry’s portrayal of the alien who often takes the form of a clown named Pennywise, and for centuries had been murdering kids from the quiet town of Derry, Maine, was masterfully done.
So not looking to top something that was already great, director Andy Muschietti gave the new movie a new feel. (Muschietti came on the project after Cary Fukunaga left over creative differences, though Fukunaga still has a screenwriting credit.) This new version is set in the late 1980s (it’s the the 1960s in the book), and makes the group of high school losers who band together to take on Pennywise more edgy and foul-mouthed than the 1990 version.
That leads to a lot of F-bombs and funny one-liners, both done perfectly by child actor Finn Wolfhard (who you know best as Mike Wheeler on the Netflix show “Stranger Things”). In fact, the entire kid cast does well. And though it’s hard to top Curry’s Pennywise, Bill Skarsgård gives a solid performance, helped out greatly by CGI to pull off the scares.
There’s no question this “It” will bring nightmares to a new generation, and realising it has a good thing Warner Bros. is far from ending things. Unlike the 1990 version, this movie does not delve into the characters when they grow up and have to battle Pennywise again. That means a sequel is certainly on the way and will feature the characters all grown up.
So get ready for another round of scares, and in the immediate future, prepare for constant speculation on which adult actors will take on the roles.
“It” opens in theatres on Friday.
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