Let’s Talk #Horror Movies… IT

We, here at The Midnight Society, are big Stephen King fans. When we heard IT was being made into a movie…we freaked out a little.

Okay, a lot.

The book is a monster, published in 1986 it stands at 1138 pages. The story flips between the late 1950s and the mid 1980s…27 years in-between. A great look at life as a kid versus life as an adult, how our fears change, but never leave us. I’ve read the book twice. Scared the crud out of me, infected my brain with ideas that creatures in the drains were going to kill me.

1986 Stephen King’s IT book cover

Then the mini-series aired in the fall of 1990…I own the DVD, so I’ve seen it a few times. They tweaked this a bit the past taking place in 1960 and the present being 1990. But we still have the kids, we still have the fight, we still have the fear.

Poster for the 1990 mini-series IT

Now we have another version to add. Another version. A movie inspired by/ based on the book. Different than the book. Different than the mini-series.

Poster for 2017 movie IT

My fellow Midnighter Amy posted her thoughts on the new movie. You can go read…or reread…here.

I decided to add my own thoughts to hers. Cause what she said was fabulous! I also loved this movie! The images are creepy, I will never forget the end fight in the sewer…down that damn well…*shudders*. They do all float.

Dude.

I actually measure how much I like a horror movie by the number of times I sit up straighter and whisper “dude”. I muttered that magic word quite a few times.

Then I listen to people say…

It wasn’t scary.

And I ponder this because it has many meanings. Maybe they are trying to sound cool, like nothing can scare them. Maybe the type of scare they want wasn’t there…too many predictable jump scares and not enough creepy, or not enough gore, or not enough action. Maybe we have expectations that just weren’t met.

Whichever it is, we go to horror movies to be scared.

Maybe we want to scream, cover our eyes, jump, and throw popcorn. Maybe we want to feel the tingles up our spine. Maybe we want our minds to twist from disturbing images that change the way we think, change who we are. Maybe we want our emotions knotted into a giant mess.

Horror is different for everyone. And we need to take each horror movie for what it is.

IT.

Did I run up the stairs that night? No. For me it wasn’t that type of scary.

But it was scary.

There’s a monster, one that can take different forms, be anywhere. One not everyone can see. A creature back from a sleep, back to feed from the fear…and the fear of kids tastes best. A fear that never leaves when you grow-up.

A fear we have to face. Not once, but throughout our lives.

Because that is what IT is about. Fear. A terrifying encounter, but not just with a creepy crawlie in the sewer.

With a bully who has no problems carving his name in a kid’s skin.

With an over-protective mom, who will lie to keep control.

With guilt over a little brother’s disappearance, and the fading hope that he will return.

With an abusive dad, who is certain his teen daughter is a whore.

With adults who ignore terrible events, who choose to turn their backs on the pain of others, especially kids.

Real life can be horrifying, disturbing, life-changing.

I loved this movie because the stories, the kids were real.

I had a little trouble with the time period. The kids’ live in the late 80s…a decade I grew up in. Through the whole movie, I still had it set in the late 50s. I couldn’t place it in the 80s. Did that ruin it for me…obviously not.

I have a different opinion of Bev being taken. This, to me, was NOT a damsel in distress, must save the girl move. Never as she faced the monster in the sewer did she portray someone waiting to be saved. She fought. Why did IT take the only girl? Because she was the strongest, because without her the boys might fall apart, but in reality she was the glue that held the Losers together and the one person they would unite to save. That’s how that worked for me.

Plenty of great images in this movie. The creepy old house. The crumbling well. Pennywise the dancing clown…his eyes, the curl of his lip, his home where everyone floats…forever.

Plenty of humor. These kids have some great lines.

I love these kids. I love their stories. I can’t wait to see them as adults. IT will return.

And I will be there to watch.

2 comments

  1. Krystal Jane says:

    I saw the movie yesterday. I haven’t read the book or seen the mini-series, but I love Stephen King in general, so I was basing what I thought the movie would be like based on other things I’ve read by him and other adaptations I’ve seen. He does people so well. I liked the movie, but the ridiculous number of jump scares made it comical and definitely distracted from the overall creep factor. Pennywise was great, but I think my expectation was that it was terrifying and after 30 minutes or so, I was completely relaxed. I’m sure the book is way more disturbing. King has a way with tension and words and imagery that haunts me. I’m looking forward to the next part, but mostly because I want the rest of the story in some form without having to read the book and actually scaring myself. Haha.

    • Kathy Palm says:

      The book is incredibly creepy. They did overdo the jump scares, perhaps the movie creators thought that’s how they could scare us. *shrug*
      I am a little worried about splitting the two time lines…Not sure how it will work, BUT I WILL BE THERE TO SEE!

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