I’ve heard it’s too long… honestly there’s nothing I would have cut from this film. It didn’t FEEL long. I probably could have happily watched more of the Losers club.
The biggest pro of this movie for me was how fucking hard the actors nailed playing their child counterparts. They were so spot on with their performances that I wasn’t taken out of the world of Derry even once while watching them. I found myself completely believing that they were absolutely the grown-up versions of the characters we fell in love with in Chapter One. A testament to how well the characters in the first film were developed. Nuances and energies and everything that makes a person a person… was present in the adult versions of the characters and it was so fun to watch the Losers Club all grown up. Their chemistry was a lot of fun to watch and Eddie had some of my favorite lines in the whole film.
I cried at the end. I cried a couple of times, actually. But the end scene especially left me feeling akin to a horror version of The Breakfast Club.
Lore rooted in Native American spiritual practices is a recurring them in Stephen King’s work and sometimes shows up in unexpected ways. Just as a fan of the author this sort of thing is always exciting to me. Watching recurring themes pop up in their work always feels like a little bit of insight into what fascinates and inspires someone to create in the first place. Building worlds around these personally fascinating things.
Were there some cheesy parts? Sure. Do I wish there were more practical effects and less CGI? Don’t I always? My most major qualm was a CGI de-aging effect used on the young Losers Club in the flashback scenes. Their faces and their voices were “de-aged” and it was a bit distracting due to the fact that it just felt fuckin’ weird. Sure the teenage actors are rapidly aging, but I think leaving them as-is would have been forgivable enough. Aside from that, though… I would hands down say they did a beautiful job of nailing the core of this tale. The Losers Club. Their relationships with one another… that’s at the heart of this story. How they each battle their own individual demons and how they come together as the collective Losers Club. King is always so adept at conjuring up images of childhood summers, what that felt like and how it felt to be so deeply engrossed in those friendships, in that world, and this film totally nailed that. Lots of laughs, some tears, some jump scares. Bill Skarsgard is this wonderfully weird mix of oddly charming, funny and fucking terrifying and it makes for an incredibly fun ride throughout.
Dare I say, Chapter Two might even be my favorite.