Clown to a kid does work on a psychological level, not as jump scare. Also this Pennywise is straight-up evil and does not look friendly at all, which betrays the idea of why clown as a horror character works. Also Pennywise is quite inefficient as he mostly teases main characters when he could have killed them anytime he wanted. To be fair, it was more of a problem in the 1990 version and I’m sure it’s the same in the original book as well.
Kids scenes are much better, and it feels like Goonies (1985) or Stand By Me (1986). They all have Stephen King-like attributes but feel natural. There are lots of nice build ups and jokes that it almost did not need a clown (though that film is called Stand By Me). The problem is that the horror stuff and kid stuff tonally clash each other. I hear the book is much messier and the script trimmed down the unnecessary parts quite a bit (of course underage group sex is taken out), so it seems like as best as a movie adaptation script can get.
It’s a 7.5/10. If the horror bit worked better, it could have been special.
The 1990 version could have been easily improved, and the new version is technically better, but not in the Pennywise department. It is getting a lot of positive reviews and I’m sure a lot of people will love it. I was personally not as satisfied, but it still comes recommended.
Flommist Toshi Omagari fights many things, most recent of which is the auto-correction of his title to florist. Copyright © 2017 Toshi Omagari.
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