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06 Setiembre 2017, 06:53 | Gervasio Siguenza
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The bonds these kids form feels natural, as does the salty language they use, which may raise some eyebrows but which we remember very clearly coming out of our own mouth at that age.
Bill Skarsgard (Son of Stellan, brother of Alexander) has infused Stephen King's killer clown with a pathological menace that's more reminiscent of Heath Ledger's Joker than Tim Curry's goofily sadistic take on the character in the 1990s miniseries adaptation.
The film, directed by Andy Muschietti (Mama), has a striking 97 percent rating on Rotten Tomatoes (with one negative review, per the site, out of 38 counted thus far), with most critics singling out Bill Skarsgard as the evil Pennywise as a highlight - along with the kids of the Losers' Club.
Director Andy Muschietti approaches the material as if he's making the Lord of the Rings of horror movies. By the time the movie gives us a brief history lesson, we've already seen the monster numerous times and assume that any missing kid in Derry has been nabbed by Pennywise.
He comes back when they are adults and if the first film is successful, they plan to turn the second half of the story into another film.
"The movie wouldn't be able to be made, or I wouldn't be able to make the character, any other way". It's a lot more uncomfortable to see children die off on screen than it is to read in the pages of a book - particularly the visual of watching a six-year-old's arm being devoured.
"But while Pennywise is legitimately terrifying, overall, It is more intense than it is scary". It's an upsettingly effective scene, and the rest of the film struggles to craft another with similar impact. To top it off, the information he digs up doesn't really enlighten us much on the subject of this demon thing that surfaces every couple decades to eat kids. Oh, they're both Warner Bros. movies, so that's even easier! The other kids just look like they might have been part of the Netflix series Jaeden Lieberher as Bill, Sophia Lillis as Beverly, Chosen Jacobs as Mike, Jack Dylan Grazer as Eddie, Wyatt Oleff as Stanley and Jeremy Ray Taylor as Ben. It's been a long time since I was last this excited to see a clown. Seemingly oblivious to any recent trends in the genre, Muschietti seems content to go with the most straightforward horror tropes, opting for jump scares, whip pans and Psycho strings from composer Benjamin Wallfisch. Finn Wolfhard is the wisecracking Richie. Bradshaw found the non-clown related scares more compelling.
Of course, there's also the matter of the child-killing chthonian creature haunting their steps.
Yes, that's how it all ends - with the seriously frightening Pennywise eventually just becoming a big, dumb, cheesy-looking spider.
No matter how many bad fates befall It's characters, the filmmaking itself is never sadistic. Not that that will comfort all the real-life clowns who can't get work thanks to the character's reemergence. Seth and I are massive fans, and for us, getting his stamp of approval was extremely important, and we essentially did. Only occasionally does the film struggle to escape the sort of easily-avoidable peril that Scream mocked - as when the gang merrily wander into a haunted house, and are surprised to find it haunted. Scene-to-scene transitions are static and disjointed, settling into a cycle of '...and then this happened' without deepening the overall dread or steadily uncovering pieces of a central mystery. We wanted to go for something that was more layered, even if you don't fully understand it.
English actor Tim Curry made the role his own in the hit 1990 TV miniseries, and now a new generation of moviegoers will scream at Bill Skarsgard, who created his version of Pennywise for the film adaptation, which opens here tomorrow.
It takes place between October 1988 and September 1999.
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