Summer is almost over, which means fall is just around the corner. And that means pumpkin spice goodness, Halloween, and of course, the return everyone’s favorite red balloons and a clown named Pennywise.
Since IT‘s release in 2017, the members of the Losers Club have gone their separate ways. But whereas three years have passed in our time, three decades have passed in Derry, Maine — and like clockwork, 27 years later, Pennywise is back to haunt the small town. The Losers, now adults and mostly caught up in their own lives, are forced to reunite in order to defeat the clown’s evil once again.
IT: Chapter 2 officially opens on September 6, but fans and critics got an early look at the second installment of Stephen King’s horror story. While the reviews are pretty mixed, everyone does seem to agree on one thing: Bill Hader is the stand-out star of the aged up cast, which includes James McAvoy, Jessica Chastain, Andy Bean, James Ransone, Isaiah Mustafa, and Jay Ryan.
Check out some reactions for yourself below.
#ITChapterTwo lacks the focus of Chapter 1, but it keeps the roller coaster scares going from beginning to end. Hader is the clear standout, and if anything, I wanted MORE Skarsgard. The end is just as bombastic as you'd hoped it would be, but with the heart to back it up. pic.twitter.com/bRCHSMpWYl
— Kyle Fully Vaccinated Anderson (@KyleDAnderson) August 21, 2019
#ITChapterTwo is big and ambitious and can't *quite* handle the weight of its aspirations, but it's still a fine piece of heartfelt horror. The parts that work, work REALLY well and Bill Hader is every-bit the scene-stealing standout we all hoped he'd be.
— Haleigh Foutch (@HaleighFoutch) August 21, 2019
#ITChapter2 isn't as refined as the first, but it's still an excellent ensemble piece, oozing with heart & packed with extremely well-crafted set pieces. Muschietti weaves the young & adult Losers together super well, giving IT 2 a truly epic feel. (MVP: Bill Hader as Richie.) pic.twitter.com/7dXmIsd2z6
— Perri Nemiroff (@PNemiroff) August 21, 2019
#ITChapterTwo is a terrific companion to #ITChapterOne. Similar vibes, great ensemble chemistry w/ a nice mix of humor and horror. Part 2 plays heavier in tone, dealing w/ defeating the burden of childhood trauma, & I definitely teared up at the very end. Bill Hader steals it pic.twitter.com/bjiwtJufNQ
— Erik Davis (@ErikDavis) August 21, 2019
#ITChapter2 has a rushed, clumsy first act & an odd lack of chemistry among the adult Losers. But it eventually finds its footing. This is a BIG movie—a go for broke horror blockbuster not afraid to make weird choices. Bill Hader steals the show. #ITMovie #ITChapterTwo pic.twitter.com/cib2slRfoq
— Chris Evangelista (@cevangelista413) August 21, 2019
The mixed part of the reviews seem to center on the fact that the story and pacing isn’t quite as well-woven as the first film, which might be due to the longer runtime. Still, the overall consensus is that it’s a movie that will ultimately be received by its audience, if nothing else because of its stellar casting and King’s strong story.
For the most part I liked IT CHAPTER TWO. First half (of this pretty long movie!) is great. And the new adult cast is stellar. Second half isn’t as tight. And overall Chapter Two isn’t as tight as the first movie.
— Mike Ryan (@mikeryan) August 21, 2019
Oh! #ItChapterTwo is a big, creative, scary movie. It’s more fun to root for kids but the adults are perfectly cast. It ends up running too long but it’s a good follow-up and some images will stick with you. R-rated goodness. pic.twitter.com/Og8NF09YZf
— BD (@BrandonDavisBD) August 21, 2019
Unsurprisingly, among the praise for Hader and the rest of the ensemble, there’s also praise for IT‘s trademark: the jump scares and creepiness of Bill Skarsgard’s Pennywise.
#ITChapterTwo was wild! Catching up with the kids as adults felt like a real reunion. It's a lot more brutal than the first film and I found it featured a much scarier Pennywise. There is some extremely wild shit in it that for sure isn't for everyone but I thought it ripped.
— Dave Scheidt (@DaveScheidt) August 21, 2019
#ITChapterTwo is probably scarier than chapter one – more Pennywise imagery to haunt your dreams. But it also loses a lot of charm in the shift in focus from the coming of age to the now adult characters. At nearly 3 hours it feels long.
— /Film (@slashfilm) August 21, 2019
#ITChapterTwo: a bacchanal of blood, brutal beauty & bold vision. Muschietti brings King’s wicked nightmare factory alive again with all its terrifying, unhinged madness & gory glory. A carnival of creeps, you’ll float (and perhaps ?yourself) down here. ?? @ITMovieOfficial pic.twitter.com/quwcIV6Ow9
— Courtney Howard (@Lulamaybelle) August 21, 2019
Sounds like Pennywise has put everyone under his spell…and it sounds like the conclusion to the story of the Derry kids is one that’s definitely worth checking out.
Featured Image: New Line Cinema