It 2: Journey to the centre of Fear
The losers’ club whom we left after the first chapter’s events comes back 27 years later in Derry in order to stop the man-eating creature, the dancing clown, called Pennywise which has returned. But does this sequel reaches the bar set by the first movie ?
The clown is back
We all have our fears: spiders, sickness, death… This fear, the creature which dwells in the sewers of Derry, a small town in Maine, uses it to control its preys and, most importantly, to make his victims’ flesh taste a little bit juicier. Pennywise, the shape shifting clown, is back to claim vengeance upon the losers’ club which defeated it in the first movie. The protagonists, who now have reached adulthood, must face him and their deepest fears. Indeed, the movie focuses more deeply on this feeling of dread than the previous one. Each character musts face his fears on his own in order to go further and try to eliminate “It”. What can be put against this part of the movie is the inconsistency in the actions of Pennywise. On many occasions could he have gotten rid of the heroes who were alone and in a weak spot but, as strange as it may sound, he lets everyone off with what they were looking for… As for our heroes, I appreciate the connexions and flash backs built around the young loser’s club and the adult one as they feel smooth and natural. This sets the movie on a strong start as it makes us, the viewers, realize that childhood is never truly far and gone and that this is the part of our lives that builds us as adults.
A horror film ?
So, is it scary? This comes as a natural question for a movie considered as a horror movie. Well, not really. Sure the movie is dark and morally shocking, but it doesn’t make us sweat bullets or even make our heart race a little…differently put, it isn’t scary. There are some jump-scares but we expect them because of tricks such as stopping the background score or a close-up shot on a dark corner. This erases the sense of horror of the movie even if the actors transmit this tense and anxious feeling. On another note, the movie can seem relatively long on paper: 2 hours and 50 minutes! But really, you don’t get bored for any minute of It. The movie’s tempo is really good with its humoristic scenes which cut through horrifying moments lived by the protagonists. The character called Richie brings a quirky touch to the dialogs which lighten the horrific aspect of the movie. In my opinion, the movie is saved by the tempo. Without it, we would have had a horror movie that is barely scary, too long, which is basically all that it takes to make a movie forgettable. But the director manages to entertain us in a way that we still appreciate the movie. The other strength, of course, is Bill Skarsgard’s acting performance as the clown. We understand right way that he’s the one leading the show and that his facial expressions will scar you and surprise you with horror more than anything else in the movie.
Ultimately, the movie fulfils its role as a sequel even though it's less surprising than the first opus. Rating it as a horror movie can be discussed as the viewers get more surprised than truly scared. However, the tempo and the humoristic aspect grant a soul to this movie and help us stay captivated until the final outcome.