Qt3 Movie Podcast: It Chapter Two

Title Qt3 Movie Podcast: It Chapter Two
Author Tom Chick
Posted in Movie podcasts
When September 8, 2019

Not only is the clown back, but he's going to take up three hours of your time!

Next: Ready or Not

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The only time that I’ve liked a Stephen King cameo was when he played the cleaner for a murder scene in Sons of Anarchy. His flat affect, rote delivery, and all-around stiffness were really striking when set against the drama and pathos of the other actors. I don’t know if I’m fooling myself by thinking that those acting choices were intentional.

The second worst part of the scene was the goofy comedy sound effects and cuts to various props when Bill was stuttering. Like, why?

I went to the first showing of this movie on Thursday night. I didn’t really like the first one, so I wanted to see this in a crowd of people who were enthusiastic about it. Sometimes that excitement can be infectious. It was a packed house except for the two seats to my left. Score!

Nearly thirty minutes into the film, a dude and his girlfriend enter the theater. The dude sits next to me. It’s a cliche these days to say that a bro walks around in a cloud of Axe body spray, but it genuinely was like sitting next to a tear gas canister. Within seconds he is laughing uproariously. Like, real guffaws from deep in the gut at the lamest, smallest jokes. “Fair enough”, I think. He doesn’t even know what the hell’s going on because he missed all of the setup, but he’s definitely enjoying this thing more than I am.

It doesn’t take long before he’s reacting to and commenting on what’s happening on screen. Real choice cuts like “OH DAMN!” and “He’s gonna eat her!” Now this guy came in late, so he wasn’t present when the theater played its pre-show bump about being polite to your fellow patrons by refraining from talking or texting. He’s also loving this to a level that suggests that maybe he’s only seen three or four movies before. So I give him a little time to get it out of his system before I have to say something.

Me: Excuse me, could you not talk, please?

Dude: No.

Me: No?

Dude: Yeah.

Me: You can’t not talk?

Dude: No.

(long pause as I stare incredulously)

Me: Seriously?

Dude: Yeah. You got a problem?

Me: Yes. Of course. That’s why I’m talking to you.

Dude: I’m watchin’ the movie.

Me: Can you just be quiet, please?

Dude: (waves his hand vaguely at the back of the theater) You fuckin’ go over there and I’ll be quiet.

Me: Dude, come on…

At this point I decide that I’ve basically been told to fuck off and if I keep talking to him I will have become the exact problem I was trying to solve. So I sit back in my chair, pretending not to be so tense that you could shatter me like glass, and wait for him to resume talking. My plan was to weather a few more comments, then go fetch the manager and get beat up on the parking lot after the movie.

The weird thing, though, is that he did exactly what I asked. He didn’t say a word for the rest of the film. He even stopped laughing at the jokes, so I guess I actually ended up ruining the movie for him.

That is a great story. I came here to second the request for it, so thank you.

“If he was a real clown, he’d be scary.”

Nailed it. The only exception to this was, in the first one, the projector garage scene, which was a physically impossible jump scare and a pretty good one.

For me it was his ace turn as Hoagie Man in Knightriders.

That sucks! It’s cool how you spoke up. I’m usually afraid of doing that because people today, you simply don’t know if they will react violently. That’s why I prefer theaters with reclining chairs (ie, Dolby Cinema) as it provides more space between me and the other patrons (and as a bonus, nobody can kick the back of your seat).

Also, I read your conversation in the voice of Larry David, I hope you don’t mind.

I have to ask someone to not talk at about half of the non-arthouse movies I attend. This was the first person to give me any guff about it since a group of chatty teens threw an open box of candy at me during It Comes at Night.

@tomchick, A hall of mirrors has both mirrors and transparent plexiglass. It’s not only mirrors. That would be dumb. You absolutely can inadvertently walk into the glass. I can attest to it first hand.

And @Kelly_Wand, while IT left me unmoved, it was The Tommyknockers where King jumped the shark. That book was horrible. It’s clear he wrote it at his drug addled nadir. Having read everything he wrote until '86, I took a decades long hiatus after Tommyknockers.

That said, when I serendipitously sat down the row from King at an almost-empty matinee of Rising Cain in 92, in midtown Manhattan. He chatted w me about the movie afterwards, and it was pretty cool.

Okay, I have to cop to never having actually been in a hall of mirrors, so I guess I just don’t understand the concept. Why would you put glass walls in there? What purpose does it serve to just randomly put a transparent barrier in a maze? I don’t see people doing that in regular mazes! Although I’ve never been in one of those, either, so maybe they do.

That said, you didn’t refute my point on the podcast that in all the history of moviedom, there has never been a hall of mirrors scene that isn’t dumb, so I still claim victory. Except this one which Dingus brought up:

But other than that, there has never been a scene in a hall of mirrors that isn’t dumb.

-Tom

Not a big podcast guy, so I don’t know if you mentioned this, but you don’t even like the one in Enter the Dragon?

Yes, we talked about it on the podcast and it’s definitely included in my reasoning for why all hall of mirror scenes are dumb*.

-Tom

* Lady from Shanghai excepted

Ah, so much to respond to! I’ll do my best.

The book actually opens on the murder of Adrian Mellon. So, yes, the gay bashing is a part of the text. If I remember right, it’s set after the actual murder, in the cop station and focusing on Adrian’s boyfriend seeing Pennywise.

As for Pennywise’s origins, the kids find it by smoking out the clubhouse that is introduced in this film. I believe it’s Richie and Mike that see Pennywise coming to earth in the “before.” Even that Pennywise was the reason the dinosaurs went extinct. In between each part of the book, Mike Hanlon goes back every 27 years to describe the brutally violent inciting incidents (which Adrian Mellon was not) and the equally violent incidents that close out the cycle. This includes the burning of the Black Spot, the explosion at the Kitchener Ironworks, the Bradley Gang massacre, etc. In fact, them killing IT as adults causes the entire town to be destroyed by a giant flood and the Standpipe breaking apart.

Andy Muschietti talked about several excised scenes that included Pennywise’s first contact with humans and him making a deal with a mother to only take her child rather than the entire town, which led to the tacit agreement between the town of Derry and IT.

As for the Mike part, it was less in your face than I thought it would be, but there are several minor shots that imply he is an addict, such as him knocking over the beer can, him dosing Bill with ayahuasca, and his constantly lying to the group to get him where they want. I did love the line “You lied to us again, Mike?!” during that last big battle.

One last thing, the novel was originally written with flashbacks as a part of the narrative. Every time a character was introduced, they would regain a portion of their memories, effectively experiencing it for the first time. Things like their scar marks had not been there before Mike’s call and, as shown in the movie, they disappeared after they defeated Pennywise. One big change from the novel is that they actually start forgetting each other, like Derry is being wiped completely from their memories now that the supernatural entity holding it up has been destroyed.

There’s talk that Andy is going to put together a full cut, possibly with the flashing forward and back throughout. That would solve a lot of my issues with the films, including their repetition. One of the things that made the novel such a joy and so tense is that they do not remember how they defeated Pennywise when they head into the sewers as adults. They are experiencing their past and present simultaneously, so them defeating IT in the same/similar way isn’t such a problem. Same could be said for the new clubhouse introduced in this film. In the book, it’s part of their later summer adventures and wouldn’t feel so out of place if the entire thing is them remembering and dealing with the aftermath of those memories.

There are two awesome videos from the YouTuber NyxFears on IT Chapter One, where they go into the story from Pennywise’s point of view (Pennywise living in the 80’s where nobody fears clowns, but IT knows that this trick has worked in the past, and IT becoming obsessed with these kids that clearly (have plot armor) aren’t afraid of it. Here are the links:

The original director and screenwriter of IT Chapter One was Cary Fukunaga. He left due to creative differences and they only marginally modified the first film’s screenplay - mostly limiting Mike’s character and changing Stan’s monster to a creature similar to Mama. Obviously, Cary wasn’t involved in the second movie and this is what we got.

If you want to see two television series that play similar to how the novel IT worked, check out True Detective (Season 3 is the closest) and The Haunting of Hill House.

Also! (I swear this is it.)

For an amazing 2 and a half hour horror movie, check out the Suspria 2018 film. One of my favorite films of all time now.

If there’s anything I didn’t hit, let me know. And, yes, you can post my email for anything I didn’t touch on.

Really glad to hear Channel Zero get a mention on the pod! I liked Candle Cove reasonably well, but I really loved No-End House. The haunted house sequence early on is absolutely inspired.

I ended up kind of mixed on Butcher’s Block, and ended up skipping Dream Door for that reason, but given Tom’s comments, I’m starting it tonight. It’s too bad Channel Zero got cancelled – but it’s Syfy, so you have to just expect it at this point.

And don’t forget the lame already existing TV version with Traci Lords.

And a lot of it’s boring and slow.

BUT A) The ending is psychotic and chaotic.

B) I really like it because it’s one of his all too few Doomed Ones, where all the characters are kinda screwed.

And C) The subtext is about something solid and specific for once, and it’s really well handled. Spoiler alert: Chernobyl.

D) Coke machine.

King wrote some of his best stuff drug-addled. The Running Man’s best use of coke ever. Long Walk too. No way he wrote Misery clean.