“It” movie review

It’s pretty much a rule at this point: films with lots of hype surrounding them can almost never live up to audience expectations. TheIT” remake, based on the novel by Stephen King, is a very real example of this rule. The anticipation and excitement for this movie surrounded our popular culture. The film became a household name before it even opened. IT may not have lived up to the gargantuan hype surrounding it, but what we’re left with is a horror movie with much more substance than is typical of others in the genre.

The movie itself isn’t bad. It has a noticeable number of cliches, but the tactile fear, smart dialogue, comedic moments between the protagonists, and amazing acting make up for this. Each of the protagonists have distinguishable personalities, engage in witty banter, and are very likeable. The antagonist, Pennywise, is a terrifying, shapeshifting, vampiric creature whose full power is never fully explained. This evokes strong uncertainty and suspense, a very important pillar in the structure of a proper horror/thriller film.  The terrifyingly terrific combination of horror and comedy is what makes the film great. Having one of the elements without the other would make a mediocre film.

But to some, the film was mediocre. Some friends of mine who saw the movie reportedly laughed at many of the moments intended to be terrifying, and I can understand where they’re coming from. Those who laugh at the wrong moments in IT just don’t want to be scared. As unsettling as the movie is, it’s not immersive enough to force you to be scared. If you try hard enough, you’ll be terrified. If not, you won’t. The people who don’t try to be scared can’t be forced to be, resulting in a noticeable amount of viewers that probably can’t appreciate the movie like those that try can.

So, if you do go see IT, be sure to be in the right head space to properly enjoy it. And I definitely recommend that you do go see it. It will invest you in its characters, make you laugh, make you remember the good old days before the world got so complicated and your worst fear was the imaginary monster in the closet, but you’d never admit that to anyone because you were too old for such nonsense. Just do yourself a favor and put some effort into being terrified. It’s worth it.