Title: It Chapter Two
Release Date: September 6th, 2019
Studio: New Line Cinema/Warner Bros. Pictures
Director: Andy Muschietti
Release Format: Theatrical
There’s a fine line between being captivated and captive with It Chapter Two walking both lines in a twisted, yet heartwarming tale.
It Chapter Two picks up over two decades where the original left off. The Losers’ Club is now all grown up, living happy (mostly) in different cities. Then, one day they all get a call to return home to fulfill their blood oath, finish off Pennywise for good or die trying.
The film is a terrifying movie that had my body contorting in ways I’ve only seen at a circus and bedrooms. They are going for cerebral scares still but now that bag of tricks as extended to some messed up stuff that’s about to have night light sales blow up.
However, as scary and funny as Chapter 2 is, the movie is way too long. Really, by the time the credits hit, I thought I would be writing a retrospective, instead of a review. Instead of feeling like Steve Rogers at the end of Winter Soldier, I felt like Steve Rogers at the finish of Endgame from the film’s length.
The Squad Runs Deep
All the actors are terrific in this movie as they nail the adult versions of the Losers’ Club. They picked up on all the little mannerisms from the kid actors in the original and updated them. So you’re not just watching a bunch man-children (and women) like it’s a Will Ferrell flick, but rather natural progressions of those characters.
I love all the leads here as much as I did in the original. James McAvoy as Bill is great playing the leader that carries the weight of everyone on his shoulders. The little studder and other ticks he develops as his character reverts to are comparable to his great Split work. Jessica Chastain as Beverly plays a heavily traumatized individual well, but unfortunately, her story arc is left on the back burner. Chastain does get a standout scene in one of the most intense Pennywise encounters in Chapter 2.
Bill Hader and James Ransone are the best parts of the movie as Ritchie and Eddie, respectively. They bring some great levity as well as some of the most emotional scenes offered in the film. Every time Hader was on screen, you knew you were about to get gold. If there’s one thing this It Chapter Two gets right is making you invested in its diverse characters.
Bill Skarsgard plays Pennywise wonderfully with ample screentime to terrify, entertain, and create some of the weirdest moments this year at the theatres. But, let’s talk about how cover boy Pennywise is the Roadrunner of horror flicks, he is a terrible killer. While he does rack up a body count here, there are so many times he’s about to kill someone, only to then randomly mess with a passing butterfly or something. Pennywise had 27 years to get meds for his ADHD to focus on killing but instead spent that time learning a new jig.
Who’s Reimbursing Me for New Underwear?
This feels like you’re watching a novel unfold on the big screen for better or worse. The budget must have saved a ton by not having an editor because nothing feels left on the cutting room floor. Of all the horrors seen in the movie during this film, the worst one has to be father time. I’m typing this from the afterlife, but seeing the people around you turn to dust from this 20,000-hour-long movie was horrifying.
Although, it is impressive that Chapter 2 features different types of scares to have something for everyone. There are: Jump scares, body horror, suspense thriller and much more wrapped in a terrifyingly effective package.
Shoutout to the designers on this for creating some fantastic designs. From the creepy set of an amusement park maze to the disfigured creatures Pennywise summons, it all shows the creativity that went into making this. Truly, the production and design had a field day coming up with the most screwed up ideas. Millennials are about to move back in with their parents for more than just being broke, but being scared by sights in Chapter 2.
It is just a shame though that sometimes, these cool sequences and sets can be thrown off by too much CGI. The designs themselves are great, however, the CGI creating these visuals can make this dissonance in your mind where it sticks out as fake, so it hard to be fully in the moment. This still doesn’t stop the film from scaring my soul out my body and leaving the first of many bodily messes ushers have to clean after Chapter 2 screenings.
Verdict: Usually, a film’s Blu- Ray release gives an extended director’s cut, this might be the first time I want a shortened cut. The extra fat really hinders this while and as much as I enjoyed every second, I shouldn’t have left the theatre feeling like a just ran a marathon.
This film has some of the best scares and comedy released of any film this year. Ready or Not and Chapter 2 have very few issues, but those issues are big enough to hamper this from being the five stars movies they can easily be. One needed a punch up writer, while the latter had its editor “floated” which left the experience feeling bloated.
Fantastic performances from the cast, great writing combined with some brilliant directing make this ambitious sequel worth the price of admission. It’s better than the first in some ways, worse in other but definitely still makes for a fun watch with a crowd.
What’s the best horror or comedy of 2019 so far? What other great films were greatly worsened by a long runtime? What is your favorite IT moment? Leave your comments!
- Tons of different & effective horror
- Best comedy of the year (somehow)
- Excellent performances from adult & kid cast members
- Character interactions
- No human's life-span is long enough to finish the movie
- Unnecessary filler/scenes
- CGI reliance on effects, that work better practically