on IT Chapter Two
My full review will be up later this weekend, but in the meantime here is a quick thought about why I felt the movie struggled to recapture the greatness of the first…
The biggest issue I have with IT Chapter 2 is its bloated middle act. The problem, however, is there's no way to really trim what needs to be trimmed.
Because what needs to be trimmed is the best (but ultimately superfluous) part of the movie: The scenes featuring the Losers as kids.
The biggest problem with the movie for me is that the adult actors aren't given as good material to work with as the child actors had in part one, and not all of the adults are as good at acting as the kids were in part one.
To be clear, Bill Hader is a revelation and Jessica Chastain does the best she can with not much material. The rest of the grown-up Losers Club look like and act soap opera stars. They don't elevate the already subpar material.
Fortunately, the movie features plenty of flashbacks to the days when the Losers were kids. These are the moments when the film shines, as that cast of actors MADE the first movie and almost carry this one to victory.
But therein lies the problem.
The movie features a lot of "isolate a Loser and scare/threaten him or her with Pennywise" scenes. The trouble is there are now twice as many Losers. We get a scene with Old Bill getting scared and then Young Bill getting scared. We get a scene with Old Richie getting scared and then Young Richie getting scared. This is why the movie drags; every major moment in act two happens twice-over.
But if you're the director and editor what can you do?
You can't cut out the adult scenes, obviously, because then the story unravels. Naturally you'd have to cut the kid scenes, since they're the only expendable part, but if you do that you're cutting out the best parts of the movie. Because whenever the kids were running around, cracking wise and getting shook, the movie was just as good as Part One. Whenever the POV switched to the adults doing the same thing, it stumbled.
I didn't hate the movie. I don't know if I totally disliked it. I just think it was a big step down from part one, which I loved.
6/10 - IT Chapter Two fails at being the fun and fright-filled romp that the first one was (which scored a 9/10). Put together the two-parter earns an 8/10.