With there being forty-something Stephen King book to film adaptations, many were immensely disappointing flops and many ended up being classics. IT was not a letdown and seemed to live up to terrifying expectations.
After Billy’s little brother, Georgie is murdered by a child-eating monster named Pennywise that takes the form of a clown, six other bullied middle school students ban together with Billy to fight Pennywise. They call themselves the Losers Club. All of these kids have distinctly different fears and each of them meet Pennywise as he tries to lure them into his traps. The monster likes to feed on children’s fears and then kills them in a terrifying fashion. The only thing is, he only shows up every twenty-seven years, so their time to kill it is now. The film is both faithful to its predecessors, the book and the original miniseries. It made some changes here and there and left some scenes out from the novel, but is for the most part faithful to Stephen King’s vision.
Bill Skarsgard as Pennywise is one of the scariest performances in film in years. The different sounds of his voice are quite terrifying and the expressions on his face will make you lose sleep for nights. The makeup has an effect on the emotion it elicits, but Skarsgard’s performance is one of the main reasons why this film is as horrifying as it is. Every scene he is in is just as petrifying as the last, making for the first terrifying Stephen King film in years.
While Skarsgard is the main reason for this film’s success, a lot of it has to do with the kids as well. Usually when there are actors who are as young as the kids in this movie, the performances are understandably amateurish, because they’re children. That’s not the case with these stars. All the kids’ performances were outstanding and made the film fun and entertaining. The child actor who really sticks out is Finn Wolfhard, the star of Stranger Things. He’s got the funniest lines and is way too raunchy for a kid his age. Almost all the kids had funny lines (except for the sad brother), making the film a little less scary than we thought and a little more humorous.
The humor in this film is more abundant that you’d think. The film feels more like a, terrifying R-rated version of The Goonies, where all the kids can be funny as hell and they get into all sorts of trouble. Only with this film, there’s also a child-eating clown. But don’t let the humor get to you too much. It is terrifying, so if you go to the theater, bring a friend. If you rent it, have a friend with you and watch it with the lights on.
Overall Grade: A-