IT Chapter Two ★★★☆☆

Fuck off, clown

Where do I start with this one? Any movie with a near three-hour runtime is going to be difficult to get into, and this one happens to be one of those mammoth Stephen King books.

The best place to start is with a confession: I’ve never read IT. I never had to; I had the enjoyable if slightly dated by today’s standards TV adaptation to watch. But I haven’t watched that in fucking years. I don’t even think I finished it.

So with that in mind if I mention being confused by anything and you feel the urge to tell me that it’s in the books. Thanks, but fuck off.

Large chunks of this, the concluding chapter of 2017’s most successful horror movie, left me so unbelievably confused I was expecting it to end with the revelation that it was all just a weed-induced fever dream of one of the kids. IT isn’t really that complicated a story, but director Andy Muschietti and screenwriter Gary Dauberman do their best to make it so.

I won’t go through the whole movie, because, again, it’s nearly 3-hours long, but let’s start with the opening – Mild spoiler warning by the way. A gay couple are berated and brutally beaten by a group of kids who, scarily, probably exist somewhere in real life.

Normally this kind of stuff is referred to again. In horror movies, secondary antagonists usually end up getting their comeuppance in grisly, yet disturbingly satisfying events. It’s called payback, yo.

But nah. Fuck that. We never see these cunts again. They turn up. Beat some gays and leave. End scene.

Now my issue isn’t with the fact that this deplorable action wasn’t punished. This is a horror film, we don’t need social commentary in everything. My complaint was the fact that their actions were, apparently, influenced by Pennywise to ensure he fed.

Well…this is what my mate who read the book said anyway.

If that’s the case, this wasn’t clear in the movie. At all.

And this is just one instance of IT Chapter Two failing to explain in-universe stuff. How the fuck can Pennywise do the things he does? What powers allow him to get away with it all so easily? How does a near thirty-year insane asylum dude escape just like that?

Your film/tv show is failing if stuff has to be explained in supplementary content. The fail here is especially strong considering the filmmakers were given nearly three goddamn hours.

Oh, and I haven’t started going on about the weird humor balance. This movie is hilarious but in all the wrong places. Seriously grisly shit is happening, and in-distress characters are making mullet jokes.

Really?

I mean, I laughed my arse off, but really?

The humor in Chapter One worked well because they’re fucking kids. Yeah, they’re scared, but they’re also too young to know how to process anything that’s happening to them. Here they’re grown adults; they should be taking things a lot more seriously, no? Maybe it’s just me.

Oh, and did I mention the movie is nearly three fucking hours long? Not a good long either. Wolf of Wall Street this ain’t. King adaptations can be pretty lengthy, but unlike The Green Mile, this just feels like a bit of a slog at times. I’m not sure what could have been cut, but something should have ended up on the cutting room floor.

I’ve moaned about this movie a lot, but I did enjoy it. Believe it or not. It’s nowhere near the same quality of the first, but it still has moments of brilliance. The cast, both young and old, are exceptional, with Bill Skarsgård once again doing a superb job as the titular creepy child-eating bastard.

The most important aspect of this movie was maintaining that same level of inventive horror that made the first so good, and they pretty much nailed it again. I maintain that jump scares can fuck off, but when IT avoids the cheap thrills it produces moments that will make your skin crawl, and haunt your dreams. One moment, in particular, feels like an amazing recreation of a very famous John Carpenter scene that left me fucking appalled.

Oh, and the music was alright too. Well done Hans Zimmer Jr.

IT Chapter Two left me a little confused, made my bum pretty numb by the end, but on the whole, it was alright; a movie that rounds off the story, and ultimately compares well to any modern horror movie not directed by Ari Aster or Mike Flanagan.