This is your official spoiler alert!
Killer clowns are making a comeback, and Stephen King’s It is responsible for a large part of the modern fear.
It was originally published in 1986, and was turned into a two-part television mini series in 1990. In 2017, It came out, sparking the newfound rise of Pennywise.
Two years later, It: Chapter Two was released Sept. 6.
It follows the adventures of The Losers’ Club, a group of misfit middle schoolers who fight against a monster who shows up in the small town of Derry, Maine every 27 years who can take the form of their worst fears.
It: Chapter Two takes those same seven members of The Loser’s Club and puts them back in Derry 27 years after their last fight with Pennywise.
Overall, both movies are phenomenal.
The attachment that you feel to each and every character, through insight into their personal lives and what they truly fear, is one of the realest that I’ve felt in a horror movie in a long time, which is why I truly think that it’s important to see It before watching It: Chapter Two.
In the first installment of the reboot, the balance between comedy and horror is refreshing. The characters–particularly Richie–act how middle schoolers really would act when faced with something terrifying: they use humor as a coping mechanism, and it made the movie something different from what we’re used to in the horror world.
It: Chapter Two was far more serious, however. Although there are still some laugh-out-loud moments, The Losers’ Club is now a group of adults who have come to face their literal childhood monster.
What makes It: Chapter Two so incredible is the emotional intensity and realness.
The movie opens up at a fair where a gay couple is beaten up and one of the men is thrown into a river where Pennywise gets to him, and honestly, it was super hard to watch. Beginning the movie with such an intensely relevant scene seemed to be a statement that It: Chapter Two wasn’t here to mess around.
Throughout the movie, we’re faced with quite a few raw topics, from Stanley’s suicide to Eddie’s death to Bill’s intense guilt.
Like I said before, the attachment that you feel to the characters in It is intense, and it only intensifies while watching It: Chapter Two.
The movie frequently cuts between the characters as children and as adults and makes plenty of flashbacks to their struggles with Pennywise the first time, which only strengthens the viewer’s attachment to the Losers.
We’re yet again exposed to the guilt that Bill feels about Georgie’s death as he goes back to the same sewer that we first see Pennywise, and each of the other adults goes back to find their own “artifacts” and faces their fears to perform a ritual to finally beat the shape-shifting Pennywise.
Watching each character go through something so intense and reminiscent of their childhoods makes you feel so much love and for them so hard.
The casting of this movie is almost impeccable. Bill Hader taking on the comedic role of Richie Tozier gave the film some relief from the intensity, James Ransone is truly the embodiment of adult Eddie Kaspbrak, and Bill Skarsgård came back to haunt your nightmares.
More than anything, It: Chapter Two was heartbreaking, and that may be what makes it so terrifying.
For me, it wasn’t the shape-shifting monster clown that caused fear while watching that movie, but it was the sadness weighing down on the film.
King uses the story to make a statement on fear, and it’s that we’re giving it the power to control our lives. We’re letting it weigh us down to the point of overwhelming guilt, living unhappy lives, and literally killing ourselves.
It: Chapter Two is worth the three hours in the theater. It’s a heartbreaking, terrifying, and hilarious film that really puts fear into perspective.