Stephen King’s IT is back on the screen after 27 years. Pennywise the dancing clown is here again, this time with a broader smile and more teeth.
The first chapter of the latest adaptation of the book certainly punches above the previous TV/Movie adaptation that came in 1990. The story feels more tightly knit with plot twists that don't fall prey to a pattern that gets somewhat repetitive as the story progresses. Having said that the difficulty of a comprehensive understanding of Stephen King's universe seems to remain unhindered.
Though the creepy clown is scarier than before, the film doesn't scare much which is ITs biggest weakness. Performance of the lead characters is a treat for any movie lover as Bill Skarsgard as Pennywise impresses immensely. The Rather infamous 'Losers Club' also performs accordingly well and impresses in bouts.
Pennywise the dancing clown loves to see the people of the town Derry float in the air. Like the red balloons that he often offers to small kids before taking them away. The thing that horror and the sense of hypnotism that leaves the town traumatised gets slowly pervaded by the thrill of rather the drama, certainly makes this movie a unique one. But without much of horror, IT feels like an empty vessel that produces dramatic ripples once hit with a spoon.
The script seems to waver between IT's universe and the dramatic needs of a feature film. With three able screenwriters, Chase Palmer, Cary Fukunaga(Producer: True Detective) and Gary Dauberman(Writing Credits: Annabelle, Annabelle creation) at the helm, this feels like a rather lifeless film. It feels hasty in its execution as a viewer doesn't get to spend much time with the characters and the town doesn't feel familiar enough to generate the required empathy. Without empathy, a film like IT misses its point entirely.
At 2 hours 15 mins, the film commits the crime of boring the audience to yawn if not sleep. It is a strange pallet of beautiful and impressive performances that still some how manages to bore. It feels like a collective effort to stop the boredom to seep in the film but in the end, it fails to fix the leak.
But, one can always cut some slack to the filmmaker as it is not at all an easy task to adapt a Stephen King novel. Does the creepiness translate from the book to the script successfully? We are not so sure.
In the end, one can certainly acknowledge the audacity of the filmmaker to tame a beast that doesn't even settle for a TV series.
IT is a good thriller that tries to be creepy. Now don't be a creep yourself and miss this one. After all, it's a Stephen King story, it deserves your love and time.