“It” will terrify audiences while making them laugh


Niklas A. Hegg, staff writer

It (2017) Review

By Niklas A. Hegg

The legendary mind of the author Stephen King has taken the world by storm since 1973 when he wrote the thriller novel Carrie. Three years later it was turned into a film of the same name and ever since then he’s had die hard fans who fell in love with his terrifying writings.

In 1986 King released one of his most famous books, It. After a tv mini-series of the same name in 1990,  the story of a murderous clown who feeds on children’s fear is back for a 2017 reboot.

The movie immediately had me hooked, putting audiences straight into the 1988 setting of the cursed town of Derry, Maine. Jaeden Lieberher plays Bill Dembrough, a stuttering middle schooler. His younger brother Georgie, played by Jackson Robert Scott goes missing after Bill makes him a paper boat for him to play in the rain with. Here’s where we get the first appearance of It also known as Pennywise, The Dancing Clown.

Played hauntingly by Bill Skarsgård, Pennywise uses creepy smile to terrify audiences but even still, Skarsgard finds a way to give him some humor. In an eery way, you’re able to laugh at his sick and twisted jokes, while still feeling afraid. His performance is easily my favorite thing about this film and it made me want more.

The plot goes on to follow the gang of fun characters that are the self proclaimed “Losers Club”. Made up of Bill, Ben (Jeremy Ray Taylor), Beverly (Sophia Lillis), Mike (Chosen Jacob), Stanley (Wyatt Oleff), Eddie (Jack Dylan Grazer) and Richie played by Finn Wolfhard from 2016’s Stranger Things. They set out to hopefully find Georgie, but they soon find out that the conspiracy goes even further than any of them could have guessed. They realize all of the children that have been going missing in the town recently are not coincidence as children die in masses in Derry every 27 years.

Pennywise uses the children’s greatest fears to terrify them before he eats them. It’s what he considers in the book as “seasoning his meat.” This makes for both creepy and entertaining sequences bringing to life nightmares. And as no grown ups can see what the children are seeing, they are left to bond with each other inside of their friend group.

All of the kids give a great performance and they had me laughing the entire time. The most notable in my opinion are Eddie and Richie. Eddie’s character is a mama’s boy who is constantly in fear of disease because of his overprotective mother. This offers some really funny banter between him and Richie, who is always delivering smart aleck responses.

For example, in one scene Eddie is leaving the house with his friends and his mother says, “you’re forgetting something.” after huffing then walking over to her, Eddie gives her a kiss on the cheek. Richie sarcastically asks for a kiss himself.

However, the humor doesn’t distract from the scariness. While being in fear you’re still able to laugh as the kid’s reaction to the horror is just as funny as the scene as whole is scary.

Overall, I found the movie being extremely entertaining both being hilarious and terrifying. It brought me in for a second viewing  and I’d be willing to see it again. The jump-scares often feel cheap, but with all the great performances, direction, and writing I give It a 9/10.