Stephen King's IT reboot - Cary Fukunaga takes on Pennywise


Apologies if this was already posted.


So I went in with very low expectations. I am very familiar with the book having read it several times. Having lurked here for many years I think it is fair to say I am a lot more forgiving than many forum posters here.

As ever, compromises have to be made for cinematic purposes…mostly that was ok. The story moved along quickly.

I did like the kids’ characters, I thought they did a pretty good job of casting them and they acted pretty well. Especially Eddy & Richie. Very true to the book. Although Mike seemed a bit thrown in really to make up the numbers and didn’t seem all that necessary, given the lack of time to develop him.

There were a few scary moments…kids and violence always makes me a little uncomfortable but it wasn’t too bad.

Was Pennywise scary? Hmm…sometimes maybe?

I didn’t feel like I wasted my money but I wonder how viewers unfamiliar with the source material will find it. Having said that they do hold your hand and explain things well. But the major interest for me was really how they tied it to the book (or not).

So probably better than expected, although that was a low bar.


A local theater here does Thursday-night opening showings for $5 a head, and is doing one tonight for IT. We drove by the area where the theater is; there was a line stretching down the block, around the corner, and to the next corner on the block. Seems like it’ll be a popular one here!


One thing that I realized after seeing it: I’m a father of a four year old child. So what Pennywise does at the beginning doesn’t SCARE me, it makes me HATE him. And that is a huge problem that I dunno if any director could overcome.


. . . are you not supposed to hate Pennywise?


I think I get what @Mark_L is saying. If your anger and hate overpowers your fear, he just ends up being a nasty clown instead of a creepy/horrifying one. You spend the movie longing for vengeance instead of quivering in anticipation of the horror.


Yes, that is it. I just wanted him to pay.

Armando- No, actually. I don’t think a horror director ever wants you to hate their villain. For just that reason- you want hated things to suffer, you’re not afraid of them. I mean, the two are obviously not completely exclusive, but I think it makes their job a lot harder.


Interesting. It’s worth noting that I basically never watch horror, so the question above was quite genuine. Thanks!


I don’t think you are supposed to hate them. I think you are supposed to walk in the protagonists’ shoes and be afraid like they are, until a final moment of cathartic table turning or, equally likely, a Debby Downer “lolz the hero loses anyway sorry guise”. Or, if they wanna be sassy, both.

But, as a father of a four year old, what Pennywise does at the start IS the thing I’m afraid of. Nothing else matters anymore. So when I put myself in the hero’s shoes, I’m not afraid for their (my) life. I don’t care about that. I just want the monster to suffer. Having taken from me what I care about most, I have nothing left to fear.


Loved the book, watched the series, but was kind of cringing most of the time.

Loved this one, and even though they had to cut a lot to get it to movie length, there were a lot of nice nods to the readers. Little things that said we know, we wish we could get this in completely, but we’ll allude to them for the fans.


I’ll fudge what Mark said a bit, but I agree with him about Pennywise. Sometimes there is the intention by the director or writer is that they do indeed want you to hate a character. This applies not just to the horror genre though. And a lot of times a writer will attempt to play around your emotions by taking the character back and forth through different emotions.

An example of the former is Captain Vidal in Pan’s Labyrinth. Straight up evil and disgusting, you are meant to hate him completely. An example of the latter is Cersei Lannister from Game of Thrones. She’s commanding and spiteful and literally makes you love to hate her. And yet, GRRM pulls us around with how he portrays her to the point that you feel sorry for her at times (the shame scene,) or understanding (when she cries that she’s losing her children,) or disgusted in other scenes.

There isn’t anything wrong with hating a character, but frequently it’s not that way from the start, it’s developed over the period of the show/movie. Horror isn’t really that different in that respect. I’ve been watching a TON of it with my GF, and she will frequently love the villain in a movie if they are presented well. (Sometimes I sleep with one eye open after watching her do that.)


I wonder if the “Hate vs Fear” dynamic is part of what was going on with Bill, and why he was such a threat to Pennywise.


I think that there is a lot to that, yes.


My daughter watched the 4 hour original movie version yesterday on TV. She didn’t think much of it. having seen so many scary movies at one point in her life this one didn’t seem scary at all. In fact, she called it a mix of The Christmas Story and the Goonies.

Personally I never go to the movies for a scare. But I have seen the original TV movie, and thought it was 90% a good movie. But that ending, I always figured they just screwed it up in the movie until I was told that no, that’s how the book ends. A spider?


If anything, the miniseries tried to punch it up. There’s a also a giant space turtle.

I’m not kidding.


I read King’s 11/22/63 when it came out and enjoyed it. It is the only King book I have read. I asked around and was basically told what someone wrote here, that King has problems finishing books. I would be really upset to read a book and discover at the end it was about spiders and space turtles.


It could be worse. The one girl out of the kids’ group could agree to have an orgy with all the boys while in the sewer so she can reunite them spiritually and find their way out of the tunnels.

Oh. That happened too in the book.


Yea, I saw that mentioned up thread. You have to wonder how King came up with that idea, and thought it was a good one.


and that his wife read it and signed off on it.

I also didn’t like he end to 11/22/63. Amazing book up until the last chapter or so.


Yeah, it’s a super lame ending to the book between the gang bang and the goofy spider. I guess you can sort of forgive the spider if you do some mental scaffolding to support the idea that Pennywise just appeared as a giant spider at the end, because anyone sane would be scared of a humongous spider. Unfortunately, King was up his own ass with the mystic “macroverse” Turtle and Spider stuff, so that’s a lot harder to do than it sounds.