The Prodigy and all the images you see in this review are owned by Orion Pictures
Directed by Nicholas McCarthy
You know, now that I think about it… I’m a lot more receptive to EVIL KID movies than I would have initially thought! Sure you’ve got the classics like The Exorcist and The Omen, but I still maintain that The Boy is a pretty excellent horror film and I even enjoyed The Devil’s Due as ridiculous as it was! Now clearly this movie is trying to ride the horror trend that was set by The Babdook and then buried into the ground by Hereditary, and not only is this obvious from the poster that’s blatantly ripping off the latter, you can see from the trailers that this is the horror film that has AMBITIONS! The kind of horror film that’s at least shot like something you’re supposed to take seriously, so maybe we have something GREAT on our hands! Oh wait; it’s a horror film in February. Let’s uh… dial back those expectations, even if I’m STILL pretty sure I’ll like this more than Hereditary. Is this the kind of horror film that’ll make the earlier parts of the year that much easier to get through, or is just another bump in the road as we try desperately to make it to the first Marvel film of the year? Let’s find out!!
The movie begins with… well a lot of stuff happening. Sarah (Taylor Schlling) and John (Peter Mooney) are about to give birth on the night that a woman named Margaret (Brittany Allen) manages to escape from a serial killer on the other side of town. The good news is that she escapes and makes to someone who calls the cops for her. The bad news is that she didn’t QUITE get away scot-free as the killer managed to take one of her hands before she escaped. Said killer by the way, Edward Scarka (Paul Fauteux), finds out that Margaret escaped and does the only thing he CAN do in that situation! Run out the front door naked and screaming until the cops shoot him dead! At the same time this is going on, Sarah has given birth to her son Miles and I’m SURE these two events won’t connect in some fashion! Anyway, we cut to several years later where Miles has grown to be a super smart yet social awkward eight year old (Jackson Robert Scott) and seems to be exhibiting more and more behavioral issues as the days go by. He attacks one of his classmates at the super fancy school, he starts saying inappropriate things to his parents, and he even starts to act like a total creeper which is freaking his parents out and each day the fear more and more what he is truly capable of. Is there something wrong with Miles that can be fixed with counseling and well-regulated medication, or will this problem call for more… unorthodox solutions? Will Sarah go to any lengths imaginable, and even some unimaginable, in order to protect her son even if he IS acting like a total jerk? Is it just me, or is this kid trying out to be the next Hannibal Lecter?
“Tell me about the lambs, Clarice.” “Geez, you’re parents let you watch THAT movie? No wonder you need help.”
IT and all the images you see in this review are owned by Warner Bros Pictures
Directed by Andy Muschietti
MAN this one takes me back! I still have my grandfather’s copy of the book that I read in middle school; torn to shreds naturally considering how much I carried it around. I’ve read a few Stephen King books here and there and I tend to like his style overall, but his movies are some of the most hit and miss films you could imagine; ranging from critically acclaimed masterpieces like The Shining to garbage you’ve never even heard of like Riding the Bullet. IT is one of the weird ones as its one of the most definitive King books out there (not just in popularity but in terms of content as well) but it’s honestly… a little bit… weak. Not saying it’s BAD, but there’ just SO much going on in there that it feels like several novels fighting for control of the narrative. Heck, if The Dark Tower didn’t LITERALLY do this, I’d say it’s almost akin to mashup of everything King had done up to that point only without a single shred of restraint to keep the whole thing manageable; hence why the damn thing is so thick you could beat a man to death with it. Still, we already got one adaptation of this story that everyone seems to like which means that someone EVENTUALLY had to take another crack at it for BRAND NAME RECOGNITION, but they at least had the foresight to make it a hard R movie instead of a PG-13 which works for SOME movies, but not for a story like IT. Will this be the new standard for Stephen King adaptations, or will this be like The Dark Tower where I’m the only one out there who actually enjoyed it? Let’s find out!!
The story of IT is set in the town of Derry (zero points if you can guess what state it’s in) where there’s been an unusual uptick in missing kid reports which has most of the town on edge; especially the kids themselves who fear they’ll be next. We know what’s up though! The first thing we see in the movie is little Georgie (Jackson Robert Scott) falling victim to the supernatural menace that has been picking off kids left and right while taking the form of a really creepy looking clown known simply as Pennywise (Bill Skarsgård). Everyone believes little Georgie to be dead, but his brother Bill (Jaeden Lieberher) is convinced that he’s still out there and plans to find him by any means possible; including going into the spooky sewers that may be full of waste but could ALSO be full of answers! His friends Richie, Stan, and Eddie (Finn Wolfhard, Wyatt Oleff, and Jack Dylan Grazer) are helping him despite their better judgement and this circle of friends increases to include Mike, Ben and Beverly (Chosen Jacobs, Jeremy Ray, and Sophia Lillis); all of whom are outcasts in one way or another and seem to be the only ones even TRYING to figure out what’s going on in their small town. Will they find the answers they seek the further they delve into the town’s cryptic history? What will Pennywise the clown do once he realizes these kids are onto him, and is there more to him than meets the eye? How the heck are they gonna do in two hours what a TV movie couldn’t do in less than three!? AND THEY HAD TIM CURRY TO HELP WITH THAT ONE!!