New Adaptation of ‘It’ Kills in Box Office

Close up of Bill Skarsgård as Pennywise Still image via FilmSelect Trailers

By Samantha Werkheiser 

Editor-in-Chief

 SPOILER ALERT: Stephen King fans will not be disappointed with this adaption of the author’s best-selling novel. The film “It” came out this past weekend, and now has the largest opening for a horror movie ever.  

 It is no surprise that the film crushed at the box office, considering all of the hype, with pranks involving red balloons popping up all over the country. The hype is very well deserved, “It” is already considered to be the best adaption of a King novel. 

It’s hard not to compare this new adaption to the one made in 1990, though that isn’t entirely fair considering it was a TV miniseries and had a budget of only $12 million.  

Because the 2017 version was not subjected to the same limitations or censorship that a TV production is, it allowed for it to include more gory scenes that will truly haunt your nightmares.  

Another large difference between this adaption and the older one is the setting itself, the original was set in 1958 like the novel was. This one was set in 1989. 

Though the era is different, the aura of the movie is not.  

The first scene is true to the novel, as violent and horrifying as it is, it allows the viewer to form a connection with the main character, Bill. Jaeden Lieberher is an excellent Bill; he truly captures the way the character was written originally, stutter and all. 

His strong connection to Georgie is shown right away and immediately the viewer can see what kind of person he is.  

A surprising change from the novel that the 2017 version took was deciding to not have Georgie’s body be found, which gave Bill his drive to find and defeat It.  

This eventually comes to a head near the end of the film when It manifests itself into the form of Georgie and Bill must finally accept that Georgie is truly gone for good. 

All of the actors casted to play the “Losers” gang were spot on, but the true heart and soul of the movie is Sophia Lillis as Beverly. 

She embodies the troubled youth with a heart of gold, she is the glue that holds this misfit gang of preteens together 

In addition, she proves to be braver than her male companions in most situations. She is also the first to realize that It loses some of it’s power over them when they do not fear it.  

The character of It/Pennywise was a difficult one to cast, the actor would have big shoes to fill with Tim Curry being their predecessor.  

Curry added a fun element to the character in the 1990 version, while still having that touch of creepiness. There was nothing fun about the way Bill Skarsgard played the character; he was all horror.  

The aesthetic of It/Pennywise differed from the original as well, with the clown looking much crustier than Curry’s version. Skarsgard’s clown definitely looked like he inhabited the sewers of Derry.  

His voice alone is haunting, but when he reveals his rows of razor sharp teeth, he is simply terrifying. 

Though It has many different forms throughout the film, Pennywise is the most used and without a doubt the one that will stick with you the most.  

Another difference between the older version and this one is the choice to separate the story into two parts, when they were kids and when they are adults. 

The 1990 adaption had these stories intertwined, just as the novel had. This version is much easier to follow because of the choice not do this.  

Chapter 2 of the duology has not yet been greenlit, but there isn’t much doubt that the film will be made considering the first was a success at the box office and with critics. 

Whether you are a King fan or lover of horror movies, this movie is sure to please. Unless, of course, you’re scared of clowns.

Email Samantha at:

swerkheiser4@live.esu.edu  

 

 

 

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