It
The sole reason anyone remembers the miniseries It was due in thanks to Tim Curry's powerful and memorable performance as the titular malicious clown of the 1990 release. His performance as Pennywise scarred many of us as kids, and I know more than a handful of adults who refuse to watch the new film because of Pennywise. He was scary, brutal, and has since become one of the most recognizable faces in the horror industry. Suffice to say, whenever the 2017 adaptation of It is mentioned, everyone debates as to how the 2017 It will topple the original. It may stir controversy to say that I find the rebooted It far superior to the original, but that is exactly what I'm going to shout with glee. 2017's It is a welcome relief among the myriad of paranormal horror films that have been dominating the box office throughout the past decade.

It starts off exactly how the original began: a young boy named Georgie is playing out in the rain. When his paper boat drifts off into the sewers, he encounters Pennywise the clown, this time played by Swedish actor Bill Skarsgård. It is immediately apparent that Skarsgård was not attempting to emulate Curry's performance in 1990 but rather took cues from the great actor and morphed Pennywise into his own beast. His playful antics with George shows a much more cartoon-like Pennywise, but also one that shines on screen. We all know what happens next; George gets his armed ripped off by Pennywise and is then dragged into the sewers. 

After, we are fast forwarded and are introduced to the rest of what will be known as the Losers. Bill, the brother of George; Ben, an overweight kid who is new in town; Bev, a girl in town who is rumored to be a slut; Richie, the trash talker of the group; Stan, a Jewish boy who is also a Germaphobe; Eddie, a hypochondriac, and Mike, a local hand at a slaughterhouse. 

When meeting with the characters in a group there's a strong resonance of friendship and childhood bonds. Each one may have their quirks and weaknesses but they each support one another. Bev, who is sexually abused by her father at her house, uses the boys as an escape from her reality; Eddie goes out with his friends to escape his over protective mother, and so on and so forth. When they're alone is when Pennywise strikes, playing on each of their fears. 

Arguably, Bill receives the worst torment out of the bunch as Pennywise uses his deceased brother against him. Appearing in his form and luring Ben at his weakest Pennywise attempts to prey on Ben. He is strong enough to survive but Pennywise enjoys the hunt. He enjoys the fear he wreaks upon the group and he takes his time with them. 

Also helping along in the torment of the children are a group of bullies led by Henry Bowers. In one of the most rage inducing scenes in the film, Bowers and his group of cohorts decide to beat on Ben by punching him in the face and cutting his stomach. I easily learned to hate his character but in doing so I also knew that actor Nicholas Hamilton was doing a great job.

It was mainly at that scene that I also understood I had a deep sympathy for the group of kids. Each one fought their own personal struggles, and in doing so grew stronger and stronger to eventually face off with Pennywise the clown. While some movies may have you feeling slightly satisfied when the hero takes care of the villain. seeing Mike take care of Bowers or watching Bev fight her sexually abusive father was rewarding.

Richie is the only character of the group I could not directly connect with. While we see the hardships with every other member of the Losers, Richie is touted as a trash talker and a loud mouth with a very convenient fear of clowns. I absolutely loved his character and the way he interacted with the rest of the Losers, often times being a comic relief, but I wish the film would have shown more of his back story and inner torment as well - that is if there was any to be had.

While Pennywise is able to disable the group for a small amount of time within the film, it does not take them long to band back together when Beverly is kidnapped by Pennywise. It's an obvious lure into the sewers so Pennywise can feed, but leader of the pack Bill is not afraid anymore. He's determined to face his brother's killer, and is able to rally the troops for a final confrontation with Pennywise. 

The Losers then all meet up in a field after the confrontation, all saying that they can not remember the events all that well. But Ben makes everyone in the Losers take a blood oath, stating that should "It" return they will come back to fight it. A final kiss between Beverly and Ben closes out the film and a fantastic journey is ended.

The synergy between every single one of the Losers, the bullies, and Pennywise is absolutely fantastic. If I must make a comparison between this film and the miniseries, I can only state that with a bigger budget and a very well defined cast of characters, 2017's It is possibly the defining Stephen King adaptation in film history. Obviously, there will be a sequel to It, that of which I'm hoping is complete sometime in the very near future. 


4
Brutal Resonance

It

8.0
"Great"
Genre: Horror
Director: Andy Muschietti
Writer: Chase Palmer, Cary Fukunaga, Gary Dauberman
Star actors: Jaeden Lieberher, Bill Skarsgård, Jeremy Ray Taylor, Sophia Lillis, Finn Wolfhard, Wyatt Oleff, Chosen Jacobs, Jack Dylan Grazer, Nicholas Hamilton
The sole reason anyone remembers the miniseries It was due in thanks to Tim Curry's powerful and memorable performance as the titular malicious clown of the 1990 release. His performance as Pennywise scarred many of us as kids, and I know more than a handful of adults who refuse to watch the new film because of Pennywise. He was scary, brutal, and has since become one of the most recognizable faces in the horror industry. Suffice to say, whenever the 2017 adaptation of It is mentioned, everyone debates as to how the 2017 It will topple the original. It may stir controversy to say that I find the rebooted It far superior to the original, but that is exactly what I'm going to shout with glee. 2017's It is a welcome relief among the myriad of paranormal horror films that have been dominating the box office throughout the past decade.

It starts off exactly how the original began: a young boy named Georgie is playing out in the rain. When his paper boat drifts off into the sewers, he encounters Pennywise the clown, this time played by Swedish actor Bill Skarsgård. It is immediately apparent that Skarsgård was not attempting to emulate Curry's performance in 1990 but rather took cues from the great actor and morphed Pennywise into his own beast. His playful antics with George shows a much more cartoon-like Pennywise, but also one that shines on screen. We all know what happens next; George gets his armed ripped off by Pennywise and is then dragged into the sewers. 

After, we are fast forwarded and are introduced to the rest of what will be known as the Losers. Bill, the brother of George; Ben, an overweight kid who is new in town; Bev, a girl in town who is rumored to be a slut; Richie, the trash talker of the group; Stan, a Jewish boy who is also a Germaphobe; Eddie, a hypochondriac, and Mike, a local hand at a slaughterhouse. 

When meeting with the characters in a group there's a strong resonance of friendship and childhood bonds. Each one may have their quirks and weaknesses but they each support one another. Bev, who is sexually abused by her father at her house, uses the boys as an escape from her reality; Eddie goes out with his friends to escape his over protective mother, and so on and so forth. When they're alone is when Pennywise strikes, playing on each of their fears. 

Arguably, Bill receives the worst torment out of the bunch as Pennywise uses his deceased brother against him. Appearing in his form and luring Ben at his weakest Pennywise attempts to prey on Ben. He is strong enough to survive but Pennywise enjoys the hunt. He enjoys the fear he wreaks upon the group and he takes his time with them. 

Also helping along in the torment of the children are a group of bullies led by Henry Bowers. In one of the most rage inducing scenes in the film, Bowers and his group of cohorts decide to beat on Ben by punching him in the face and cutting his stomach. I easily learned to hate his character but in doing so I also knew that actor Nicholas Hamilton was doing a great job.

It was mainly at that scene that I also understood I had a deep sympathy for the group of kids. Each one fought their own personal struggles, and in doing so grew stronger and stronger to eventually face off with Pennywise the clown. While some movies may have you feeling slightly satisfied when the hero takes care of the villain. seeing Mike take care of Bowers or watching Bev fight her sexually abusive father was rewarding.

Richie is the only character of the group I could not directly connect with. While we see the hardships with every other member of the Losers, Richie is touted as a trash talker and a loud mouth with a very convenient fear of clowns. I absolutely loved his character and the way he interacted with the rest of the Losers, often times being a comic relief, but I wish the film would have shown more of his back story and inner torment as well - that is if there was any to be had.

While Pennywise is able to disable the group for a small amount of time within the film, it does not take them long to band back together when Beverly is kidnapped by Pennywise. It's an obvious lure into the sewers so Pennywise can feed, but leader of the pack Bill is not afraid anymore. He's determined to face his brother's killer, and is able to rally the troops for a final confrontation with Pennywise. 

The Losers then all meet up in a field after the confrontation, all saying that they can not remember the events all that well. But Ben makes everyone in the Losers take a blood oath, stating that should "It" return they will come back to fight it. A final kiss between Beverly and Ben closes out the film and a fantastic journey is ended.

The synergy between every single one of the Losers, the bullies, and Pennywise is absolutely fantastic. If I must make a comparison between this film and the miniseries, I can only state that with a bigger budget and a very well defined cast of characters, 2017's It is possibly the defining Stephen King adaptation in film history. Obviously, there will be a sequel to It, that of which I'm hoping is complete sometime in the very near future. 


Sep 09 2017

Steven Gullotta

info@brutalresonance.com
I've been writing for Brutal Resonance since November of 2012 and now serve as the editor-in-chief. I love the dark electronic underground and usually have too much to listen to at once but I love it. I am also an editor at Aggressive Deprivation, a digital/physical magazine since March of 2016. I support the scene as much as I can from my humble laptop.

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