IT Chapter Two
Defeated by members of the Losers’ Club, the evil clown Pennywise returns 27 years later to terrorize the town of Derry, Maine, once again. Now adults, our childhood friends have long since gone their separate ways. But when people start disappearing, Mike Hanlon calls the others home for one final stand. Damaged by scars from the past, the united Losers must conquer their deepest fears to destroy the shape-shifting Pennywise – now more powerful than ever.
“It Chapter 2” actually picks up where the first movie ended. Taking place 27 years after the original 2017 picture, we open this installment with a man witnessing his boyfriend being savagely persecuted by an intolerant gang of homophobic teenagers and thrown off a bridge after they leave a carnival. Once Adrian falls into the rushing waters he comes face-to-face with the dreadful Pennywise who brutally murders him.
Mike (Isaiah Mustafa), has taken over as town historian and remained in Derry to keep watch for the evil Pennywise to resurface. After the hate crime reveals to him that the evil clown is back, he proceeds to call up his long-ago childhood friends, the seven members of the Losers’ Club, all grown up and living separate and prosperous lives far away from Derry. The group of seven misfit children from Derry, Maine, were also bullied and ostracized at school but are now forced to return and risk their lives in an attempt to subdue It. The gang has no memory of the promise they made to each other as children…or even of childhood itself but Mike reminds them of the blood pact they all made.
The group finds themselves reluctant to return to Derry, especially after learning that one of their members has actually chosen to commit suicide rather than return to their nightmarish crusade. With their childhood memories returning, they each begin to experience the horrific childhood memories and the pain from their past. And to make matters worse, it appears that Henry Bowers has escaped the mental institution and is roaming around with a knife. Teach Grant who plays the part of Bower’s does a pretty decent job in his few scenes he has but lacks the insanity that Nicholas Hamilton gave us. I’ll also say that I really felt uncomfortable when watching Stanley’s suicide. I already knew he was going to die because he died in the original IT, but this time we get to witness up close and personal Stanley hurting himself. And I didn’t want to watch him do that to himself again.
Although I thought Pennywise was much more brutal in this half, no longer playing games with the group and meaning to take all of them out with brutal and deadly purpose, I felt they relied way too much on the GCI. I feel the film would have been so much more effective without the overuse of this. That being said, there were some really awesome and fantastic scenes using the CGI, and it was also much better in this movie compared to the 2017 film. Of course, it should I suppose, because the 2nd Chapter had a much bigger budget to work with than Chapter 1 did. Still, even though there was too much use of CGI here, it didn’t actually ruin this movie.
To me “It Chapter Two” felt more like the novel, because as in the book, it’s jumping back and forth between their childhood coming of age Losers club days, and the adults who responded back to Mike his call to beg their return back to Derry to honor their pact. It has the same great message about friendship and the bonds that we form as youngsters to help us successfully face our fears in years to come. Also, the fact that it even told the story of the attack on the two males at the start of the movie, such as it was from the start of the book. Let me also make a note here that Chapter Two doesn’t fully stand on its own, meaning that you may need to watch Chapter One again to understand what is going on with this one, as both films together make one complete movie. It’s a continuation of the first film, so I’m just saying, a watch of the first one will greatly benefit you!
The framing, cinematography and musical score are outstanding. The character development and casting were beautifully done, you can actually feel the emotional impact that each one brings to the movie. Their lingering fear that feeds upon their souls, the terrifying memories that still haunt them and the hopelessness that manipulates their strength, all leaving a remarkably strong impression within us. Well done, team! Even though the entire cast was well done, I have to give special praise to Bill Skarsgard and Bill Hader. Bill Skarsgard seems to have really grown into his returning role as Pennywise. He’s a great and talented actor anyway, but taking on the role as that evil clown made it seemed like his second skin. He was way more terrifying this time around. The way he managed to make his presence known with that creepy-ass elastic body language he does so well, and the crazy eye movements and insane expressions truly creeped me the hell out. I think he was just as good as Tim Curry was. Bill Hader really owns every scene he played and really does feel like a grown-up version of Richie, we also get to see that there’s a really big heart in that wise-cracking goofball.
Also returning for Chapter Two were director Andrés Muschietti and screenwriter Gary Dauberman. Dauberman did the ever so fantastic “The Conjuring” sequel “Annabelle Comes Home,” and worked as the sole screenwriter in “It Chapter Two.” Andrés also made a cameo appearance in the pharmacy scene but lets not forget that Stephen King himself made one as well. He played the amusing and crabby consignment store owner that made the snarky comment about not liking the end of some author’s book. Can you guess what he was referring to?
Speaking of Stephen King’s cameo appearances, here’s some fun trivia for you. The cameo appearances listed below are in order of the film’s release date. Did you catch all of them when you watched these movies? If you know of others I might have missed, comment below or join our private Facebook Group to discuss them!
Creepshow (1982) – The lonely farmer who started to mutate after touching a meteor that landed in his backyard.
Maximum Overdrive (1986) – The man who had the unusual misfortune interacting with the evil ATM machine.
Creepshow 2 (1987) – The truck driver who stops to report a dead body in the middle of the road in the “Hitchhiker” segment.
Pet Sematary (1989) – The minister who presided over the funeral of little Gage Creed.
Golden Years (1991) – The cranky bus driver who only wanted to stay on schedule in episode 5.
Sleepwalkers (1992) – The cemetery caretaker who is angry and then bumps into the other cameo stars, Clive Barker and Tobe Hooper as he walks on his way.
The Stand (1994) – Plays Teddy Weizak, a plague survivor who joins the ‘Boulder Free Zone’ under the leadership of Mother Abigail. Only his character in the book geta decapitated in an explosion, while in the film he survives.
The Langoliers (1995) – Plays the evil money-hungry boss, Tom Holby.
Thinner (1996) – A pharmacist who is amusingly named Mr. Bangor, which is King’s actual hometown, Bangor, Maine.
The Shining (1997) – The ghostly bandleader who shows us a few dance moves. Oddly, he’s also named Gage Creed, after the dead toddler in Pet Sematary.
Storm of the Century (1999) – He was the lawyer in an ad” and the reporter on the broke television.
Rose Red (2002) – The pizza delivery guy who was spoken to rudely when he was making his delivery.
Kingdom Hospital (2004) – That disturbing maintenance man named Johnny B. Goode.
Under the Dome (2014) – A customer at the diner who asked for more coffee.
Mr. Mercedes (2017) – Plays a short-order cook in a diner who meets his horrific end.
IT Chapter Two (2019) – Plays the creepy and rude shop owner who sells Bill the bike that he rode as a child.
Overall this was a really good movie that I enjoyed thoroughly. Even at nearly 3 hours it never felt overly long, nor was I bored. I actually wanted it to go on! Highly recommend this one!
Title: IT Chapter Two
Release Date: September 6, 2019
Runtime: 2 hours, 49 minutes
Genre: Horror, Thriller, Suspense
Studio: Warner Brothers Pictures
Starring: Bill Skarsgård, Jay Ryan, James Ransone, Andy Bean
MPAA Rated: R
Director(s): Andy Muschietti
Reviewed by: Grim Magazine
Our Rating: 4.0 /5
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