IT was a hell of a Box Office Weekend
"It" the most recent movie adaptation of the famed Stephen King novel by New Line Cinema, dominated the box office weekend and debuted at number one with a gross worldwide box office total of over 200 million.
The movie is undoubtedly a success when it comes to box office standards-the movie broke many records left and right. This is even more commendable because of the slump the movie industry has been in during the summer of 2017.
Beyond the numbers, "It" was also a success in terms of artistry and entertainment, but "It" was not perfect.
"It" has many strengths, chief among them is the chemistry and dialogue of the young cast. The banter and coming of age dialogue between the boys and the sole girl member of the Losers' Club is timeless and funny, filled with all the awkwardness and need to prove something bravado being that age inspires. The dialogue for these young actors, most importantly did not feel as if it was written by adults. Too often dialogue for young actors feels forced and out of touch because the writers are so obviously adults imitating youths.
Also, a serious round of applause needs to be given to the cinematography for its sumptuous and beautiful scenes that brought out the beauty of rural Maine.
"It" is a coming of age tale but most importantly at its core, "It" is a horror movie. Horror movies can be about many different things, but its most important job is to scare, to make the audience jump in their seat, hold their breath, close their eyes, look away-and it is in this respect that "It" failed to hit the mark.
The "It" trailers promised a scary movie and the beginning of the movie definitely had moments that genuinely scared audience members. The total audience members I saw "It" with had very exact and similar reactions to the same parts of the movie. We were all scared when Pennywise took Georgie under the sewer, and Beverly's bathroom scene, but there were other scenes when the gore fell flat.
One of the reasons why this new "It" movie was not as scary as it could have been is because it feels as if they wanted to recreate the movie in a classic way, without the excess gore modern horror movies utilize. However, audience members in 2017 have simply seen so much gore and horrifying movies in the last decade, that a silly clown that jiggles and chases them around a bit is almost laughable as a villain. Furthermore, Pennywise's attacks were very elaborate and busy, yet with all its bells and whistles it might have been scarier if his attack scenes were more to the point. 2016's "Don't Breathe" in comparison, with a much smaller budget, managed to keep audience members horrified, and that movie's villain did not have supernatural powers to aid him in his elaborate evildoings, just a dog, but somehow less was much more in terms of producing sheer horror. Overall, the scenes with Pennywise seemed more concerned with the style of how he and the overall scene looked visually than with the terror the scene should be producing.
Let's make one thing clear though-"It" is a great movie worth watching. Sure, it failed to deliver in vast quantities of horror, but it made up for it with a whole lot of charm. "It" was entertaining, visually beautiful, full of solid comedy and sweet moments as well. I just fail to see why "It" received a R rating when it could have easily been a PG-13 movie. In fact, "It" seems over all as a horror movie specifically for a younger audience, as almost all the adults who I saw "It" with agreed the 80's nostalgia was cool (and on trend), the kids were great in their respective roles, but that the movie was devoid of actual horror.
Perhaps all Pennywise needs is a friend, like the possessed evil girl in "The Exorcist" to give him a few pointers in the right direction. Horror fans will want the next installment to have more horror, and there ain't no clowning about that.
Image: New Line Cinema. "IT Movie" - Facebook.