After the fascinating tale of It produced in 2017, viewers come back to the town of Derry to finish what ‘The Losers Club’ started 27 years ago with Pennywise the dancing clown. In It Chapter Two, Directed by Andy Muschetti, the audience becomes acquainted with characters and plots. These plots are engaging but ultimately lead to dead ends in developing the overall plot of the film. For example, the subplots of multiple minor characters in the 1st act of the movie have no purpose other than to be killed by Pennywise. With the only plausible goal to give Pennywise at least a few victories from his return. This fact may have already been given away after revealing its runtime of nearly three hours.
Once Mike Hanlon, Isaiah Mustafa, has witnessed Pennywise’s, Bill Skarsgård, return to Derry after being cramped up in an attic for twenty-seven years, he calls ‘The Losers Club’ to return home. Mike becomes desperate in an attempt to fulfill the promise they had all made as kids when he learns their memory of Derry is not the same.
Only after the return of Pennywise does the plot appeal to our curiosity, as viewers catch up with ‘The Losers’ and their lives as adults. Bill Denbrough (James McAvoy) is now a writer who ironically can’t find a proper ending in his novel just as the film itself. However, all of ‘The Losers’ seem to have one thing in common that overall ties the plot together. Each of them appears to have never let go and move on from the fear they all individually faced as children, which creates a character-driven plot with their arcs.
Not a horror movie
To describe this film as a ‘Horror’ seems inaccurate. Instead of the main conflict in this movie being about a killer clown, it is focused on the internal conflict in each of the characters that are brought out from Pennywise’s use of fear and intimidation. The movie has it’s fair share of jump scares and frightening images, but at times it seems to be overrun with the absolute outstanding comedy from Richie Tozier (Bill Hader) and Eddie Kaspbrak (James Ransone).
It is more likely the audience found themselves laughing more than they did screaming or jumping out of their seats. As well as comedy, viewers also answer the burning question of the love triangle between Beverly Marsh (Jessica Chastain), Bill and Ben Hanscom (Jay Ryan). This resolves just when the intensity is at its climax, giving viewers the opposite of the fear it is trying to tackle all at the same time.
James McAvoy and Bill Hader give outstanding performances even with a great cast of actors alongside them. However, the films nostalgia for the kids 27 years earlier, seems to outshine their adult versions with constant flashbacks. New information of them still premiering for a story that’s held in the far future. Viewers can see which cast the director preferred over the other, which in turn creates the same feeling for the audience.
What ultimately makes this a good film is the drama and thriller-like conflict that is set up with each character, justifying the runtime of the film. Each ‘Loser’ chooses for themselves to overcome their fear, or to be consumed by it. The polarities of courage and fear are terrifically expressed as they continue their fight against vanquishing Pennywise along with their terrible and traumatizing past. As ‘The Losers’ come together, their final mission is to defeat Pennywise. They also must come to grips with and become free of, their past to be who they have always wanted to be.
In conclusion, It Chapter Two presents a wholesome and inspiring tale for the audience to latch onto, although they seem to forget how to truly integrate the title’s namesake and horror while doing it. Even though the film contains scary and frightening moments, the film never seems to achieve a real sense of dark and gritty horror. By the end of the movie, people walked away satisfied and happy with ‘The Losers’ and can’t help but feel empathetic as viewers analyze each of their journeys. It brings them to hope to one day overcome our fears as each of ‘The Losers’ did in their home town of Derry.
So in the end, with everything good and bad about this film, it was never about CGI jump scares or horror. It was really about each ‘Loser’ overcoming their fears and letting go of their past to become what they have always wanted to be. Unfortunately, the side effect of the films deeper meaning makes this film seem confused and choppy in its plot flow. It Chapter Two is scary, funny, uplifting, and thrilling, which spreads it thin to obtain a significant impact on the audience even at its best moments. The film seems too greedy towards what they wanted to capture from the audience, thus creating an ending to It that doesn’t seem to stick the landing.