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Saw IT: Chapter Two Thursday, and I it was a pretty fun film. For those that have read the novel or watched the first chapter would know that 27 years after the events of the first film, It resurfaces in Derry, Maine, to continue its spree of terrorizing the denizens and eating its children. Mike Hanlon, the token black member of the Losers Club, remained in Derry to document information on how he and his friends could possibly destroy It if he ever returned. And sure enough, he had, thus began the revival of the blood oath they made years ago.
The acting is stellar for the most part. While many have already stated this, it is true; Bill Hader does an amazing job at portraying the grown up Richie Tozier. He carries most of the humor in the film, but when the time calls for emotion, he does fantastically. The other cast members also do a good job at portraying the grown up Losers and they do resemble them in some likeness, but I felt they weren't as impactful. Bill Skarsgard once again kills it as Pennywise the Dancing Clown, who here is actually a little more goofier, but nevertheless, the 27 years did nothing to file down his fangs. He's just as creepy as he was in the first film - maybe even more so.
Unfortunately, my issues with the film mostly lie in the writing. The film for starters is 3 hours long. Normally I don't mind long films. I mean Avengers: Endgame was roughly around the same length of time but I felt that it flew by quickly without me having to excuse myself for a bathroom break. It: Chapter Two, however, didn't need to be that long. I am aware that the novel is a long read, 1,138 to be exact (and I read it for a few months to complete it), but the side quests that the Losers go through really weigh down the runtime and are nowhere as interesting as they may as well should've been.
There were also new additions to the film that I felt could've provided something new for a story that had already been established, but those moments are ultimately for nothing. The biggest issue, however, is the adults. The adult portion of the story was never my favorite part of the original book, not in the miniseries, and it's still there in this take. I guess what makes it problematic is that...let's be real: children being put into dangerous situations with an evil, ancient monster is infinitely more terrifying than adults facing those childhood traumas. This is especially true if you have little ones who you do not want to be put in harm's way. That is what made the book Pet Sematary and its 1989 adaptation scary. The adult portion of the It story was always the weakest of the two.
Overall, It: Chapter Two is a mixed bag. As a conclusion, it is definitive and mostly satisfying, but when you take what the first film had done, it comes off as more feeble.
For my own, I really enjoyed the first movie, and was really looking forward to this one. And having seen it on its opening weekend, what do I think? It was... not the first.
I did not read the book (its a LONG haul), so I can't speak for its faithfulness aside from what I've heard through here-say. I also have not see the mini-series. But that said, I have read some synopses of the story, so I understand how the plot goes. With that said, in its apparent desire to be faithful, it also incorporated the weaker aspects of the story as well. Its hard to go into those weaker aspects without going into spoilers, but if you're familiar with the original, you may have an idea of what I'm talking about. These elements definitely draw a lot of the fear and tension out of the scene.
In regards to the horror side of things, with the exception of a few scenes, I honestly wasn't that scared; you can tell when a jump scare is building, and while it works sometimes, most of the time it doesn't. That might be a least partially an age of thing; I think as viewers we will be naturally inclined to be less fearful for adults than children. But in this, a lot of the scares don't really hit home for me.
But I still think there is a lot of good in the movie as well. For me at least, the best part of both movies was the bonds between the Loser's Club. While the adults don't have the same amount of chemistry the kids did, they still have (at least for me) enough of those bonds and connections to make me care about them.
The plot also held my attention, and I was definitely curious to see how it would go, which I guess one could argue is the most important part. I know some might be dissatisfied with how the story takes some of the mystery about what IT is, but I'd make the argument that the intention was for people to learn about IT, and for me at least, I was interested to learn more about IT's nature. Though that might be more of a personal taste than anything else.
The performances are still spot on, and its almost eerie how much the adults look like their young counterparts; all the Losers managed to capture the similar personality and traits of their counterparts, and I was always invested in them. Bill Skarsgard still give commands the same same presence he did in the last movie, and is probably my other favorite part.
So, was I scared? Not really. Was I entertained? Certainly.
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