Now having said all of that, I will watch any clown movie I can find because I seek out the feeling of being scared. Many horror fans are always searching for that feeling in a film. Heading into the theater last night brought forth a wave of excitement along with a healthy dose of, "Why am I doing this to myself? The original IT did not go well for you when you were 12, Jessica." Bottom line is this version of IT was a gory and entertaining horror experience, the whole package type of horror. You get 80s nostalgia, comedic relief and a riveting, charismatic horror icon that elevated the role of Pennywise and freaked everyone out. Not just those already uneasy about clowns. My girlfriend will attest to this.
Bill Skarsgard had enormous shoes to fill as the big bad, Pennywise, and he brought an intense performance while still pulling off an over the top, colorful costume and dramatic head and face makeup. I was concerned seeing the first images of Pennywise in the movie's early stages. Specifically, whether his appearance would be less unnerving and more of a joke to viewers who don't find clowns all that scary. But, Skarsgard erased those concerns once I heard him speak. The way he was able to master the creepiness of his child-like squeaks to lure children in and then revert to gravelly, hellish bellows in his true form was mind-blowing. Honestly, just him standing still was chilling. I couldn't wait for him to get back on screen. Each sequence of Pennywise was played up as something new to terrify each member of the Losers' Club and feed on their fears. I continuously looked forward to how Pennywise would materialize into their worst nightmares. Also, really glad it wasn't happening to me.
The best part about this movie was how funny all of the kids in the Losers' Club were because the audience got some relief in between our clamoring screams. There were moments that I may have blacked out due to well-timed and unpredictable jump scares and, I admit, I also made myself aware of the exits upon entering the theater.
I would recommend IT to anyone who was a fan of the original or just wants to have a good time screaming in front of their loved ones. I truly loved this movie. It did not help that as I was leaving the theater, there was a single, red, floating balloon tied to a storm drain nearby. As if Pennywise were reminding me this was only Chapter One.