With Pennywise out of his 27-year hibernation and now making his way across cinema’s worldwide it’s time to dive into his latest movie and break down everything that you need to know about it.
Throughout this, I’ll be going over the main plot points of the showdown between the killer clown and the Losers Club and discussing my interpretation of the movie and it’s ending.
There will be heavy spoilers here so if you haven’t had a chance to check out the film yet then I highly recommend that you turn off now.
With that out the way I just wanna give a huge thank you for clicking this video now let’s get into my breakdown of IT Chapter 2!
IT Chapter Two Plot Recap
After the horrifying death of Adrian Mellon and a number of disappearances in the town of Derry, it becomes clear that Pennywise has returned to the surface once more. Mike who has remained in the city, observing any strange occurrences that happen there, calls on his old friends from the Losers Club to remember their oaths.
Each of them other than Mike has gone on to have successful careers but this phone call that they receive makes them slowly begin to remember their childhood’s and also the terror that awaits them. Some simply cannot handle it and Stan commits suicide out of fear which we later discover is because he feels that this would’ve held them all back which I’ll get into later.
The Loser’s Club Grown Up
Beverly is once more in a toxic relationship and similar to her childhood is dealt abuse by her husband Tom Rogan who contrary to the source material and mini-series is in the film very little.
Bill, who was always a metaphor for Stephen King, is a married writer who has trouble finishing stories which could also be seen as an allegory for this film and how it wraps up. Juxtaposing the original mini-series, his wife, similar to Tom Rogan is absent from the movie. In the series she was captured by Tom and then taken to Pennywise where she was sent into a vegetative state but this is completely missing which I personally thought was a smart move as that was a pretty lackluster part of the adaptation and original work.
Ben is a successful architect however he also suffers from alcoholism and still possesses unrequited love for Beverly which is also a driving force for him returning to the town.
Eddie is still a hypochondriac and has pretty much gone on to marry his mother, literally! Similar to Beverly finds himself trapped in a cycle of unhappiness.
Richie Is Gay?
The biggest change-up comes in the form of Richie who, similar to the source material is a famous comedian that enjoys national acclaim. The movie changes him drastically in the fact that he is actually Gay and is in love with Eddie. This sort of mirror’s Ben’s affection for Beverly and whilst it may sound slightly jarring to people who weren’t expecting such a turn I actually think that the movie pulls it off really well, especially due to Hadar’s performance.
Eddie in the mini-series always struck me as gay and they did change up his adult life slightly in that to make him a virgin so I think this relationship and attraction makes a lot of sense and sort of fleshes Richie out more than we’ve ever had before as in the past he was pretty much a one-note character that was used predominantly for comic relief a lot of the time.
Pennywise Returns…very little
Anyway, they reunite in the city minus Stan and discover that not only are things far worse than when they were Children but that Pennywise is also out for them as adults. He’s far more vicious than he was 27 years prior and from the off, it’s clear that this is a completely different beast altogether. There’s far more gore and the movie feels a lot more mature than the prior entry.
Now those expecting to see a film full of Pennywise will be very disappointed I think as the character or rather the form isn’t in the film that much. Whilst IT itself does pop up often there’s not really much of the Clown which I was hoping to see more of as Bill Skarsgard is spellbinding in the scenes that he gets.
The Losers Club begin to recount their childhood and throughout Pennywise torments them as he continues his reign of terror, showing just how helpless the Losers Club are against him. It’s terrifying and it’s a huge step up from the prior film that shows why they must stop this cycle.
The Failing Of De-Aging
There’s a huge scene in which we revisit the Losers Club back when they were younger and a huge criticism about this is that the De-aging effect comes across pretty poorly. I don’t know why the creative team decided to try and do this as it falls completely flat and massively took me out of the movie. Whilst the child actors have grown up, I don’t think it would have been as bad to see the actors as they carrying out this dialogue, minus the effects. Marvel really set the bar with their de-aging and unfortunately, this massively pales in comparison, seeming almost laughable at points. Whilst it’s not enough to break the movie it is quite head-scratching and will probably be a big critique against the film going forward.
Now not long after this we discover Pennywise’s origin story and the group uncover the way to defeat him which is known as the Ritual of Chud a metaphysical ritual that will destroy the creature on a psychic level and finally vanquish him.
The group looks for totems from their childhood that will help to empower them so that they can finally face down against the creature.
Henry Bowers returns and whilst he is slightly underdeveloped he still acts as another hurdle between The Loser’s Club and their final showdown.
They return to Neobolt house and Pennywise uses all elements from their childhoods to try and make them remember the fear that has haunted them for so long. It’s an awesome scene that by far bests the original film and acts as a trip down memory lane. It even switches up the Stanley head in the refrigerator scene and uses him as a child rather than an adult. There’s an awesome Thing reference that I think fans of horror will love but finally, the group makes it to Pennywise’s lair.
Here they’re given a real test and it looks like fear is slowly overcoming them as they begin to deal with the enormity of their task. They head into the lair and there’s even a reference to the turtle from the book as they head into the final showdown.
The Ritual of Chud fails and does nothing to Pennywise and Mike reveals that it didn’t work initially when it was performed by a tribe of pilgrims that tried to defeat Pennywise but he believed that due to their self belief they may have been able to overcome it.
IT: Chapter Two Ending
Pennywise using it’s psychic abilities transforms reality around them whilst changing into the spider creature that massively breaks them down mentally, reminding them off all of the trauma that they’ve been through, most notably Beverly which is when the most blood on screen in a scene moment happens. However with the love that exists between the characters they are able to get each other out of it. Ben saves Beverly and vice versa, Richie’s belief in Eddie strengthens him, Bill apologises to a vision of Georgie in which he admits that he lied about being sick as a child and that he just didn’t want to play with him that day.
It’s a really heartbreaking moment that completely recontextualises the film and in my opinion is one of the best reveals in the movie. Bill sheds the guilt and along with the rest of the group at this moment, they break out of the spell.
Fighting the creature head on, Eddie attempting to save Richie tries to spear Pennywise but unfortunately he is impaled which eventually leads to the character’s death. This inspires the group to no longer fear Pennywise and as he’s no longer able to thrive on it he shrinks to a point that the losers are able to finally kill the character by ripping out his heart.
IT Chapter Two Ending Explained
In the finale, though the Losers Club win, it’s a very bittersweet ending.
We see Richie R + E in the same way that people often do with a teenage crush, which shows that he’s really lost the love of his life and used humor to cover this up. It’s a tragic reveal that really hits home and cements that we all have regrets in life that we wish we had the time to go back and change.
We learn of Stan’s true intentions through a letter in which he reveals that if he had come back to Derry that Pennywise would have become stronger due to the fear that he had for IT and this would’ve probably meant that they would’ve lost.
It’s a nice little twist on the original work I think as Stan’s death always kinda felt a bit underdeveloped to me and lacking in purpose whereas this really drives home that it wasn’t in vain and in the end that he did do it for the right reasons rather than purely because he was a coward. People who commit suicide often express feelings of being a burden upon others and this adds a lot of weight to the thinking behind why Stan made the choice that he did.
Ben and Beverly start a relationship together and Bill and Mike discuss Stan’s letter and Mike finally states that once and for all he’s going to leave Derry. Mike has pretty much been told throughout his entire life that he’ll never be successful and this mentality is the main thing that’s always held him back and has been the reason that he’s stayed behind in Derry. Now the character finally feels like he can go on and start a new life and it’s inspiring to see him grow.
In the end though it’s a complete change from the original book and mini series I think this works a lot better and it ends the film on an emotional high.
It Chapter Two Review
But what did I think of the film overall? Well, whilst I did enjoy it I do feel like it was impeeded slightly by the length which at some points can seem meandering and the lack of Pennywise which is one of the main things that people came to this film to see.
I think when reading the book and even watching the mini-series, the strongest element for me was always the children’s stories. These were easy to relate to and who doesn’t remember growing up and being scared of things that now seem laughable. I remember when I was about four I got told by a group of teens that there lived a troll on a reservoir next to where I lived and for many years I was too terrified to ever go up there.
Stuff like this really made me find commonality with the story of IT and I think like many the adult’s section just didn’t appeal all that much which is why myself and other critics are having difficulty praising the film. Now there is rumored to be a directors cut that clocks in at four hours in which I think that elements such as Henry Bower’s storyline and more things that were cut from the book will be explored, perhaps making for a more enjoyable film even if longer in length.
That’s not to say it’s bad though and IT Chapter Two deals with all of its subjects in a mature and adult manner that do still make it one of the most interesting horror movies of the last decade or so. IT to me has always been a metaphor for sexual assault and whilst many may not agree I think there’s a lot of evidence to support it. We follow characters who went through traumatic experiences when they were younger with an adult-like figure who seemed untouchable by the law and was something that wasn’t discussed openly. These characters repressed their memories only to confront them years later and finally put an end to what happened to them as youngsters.
Pennywise himself even evokes images of infamous child serial killer John Wayne Gacy who famously dressed as a Clown and whilst Stephen King has never acknowledged that the story is inspired by him, the fact that Gacy was arrested during 1978 when King began writing the book is hard to ignore.
Either way this cements to me that when dealing which such storylines that a sense of maturity has to come with the work and IT Chapter Two definitely carries that without it feeling heavy handed or off-putting for people who would just like to watch a simple horror film with a few jumpscares.
The acting of the piece is phenomenal, most notable Bill Hadar who took Richie from one of my least favourites out of the group to the best by far. He was always annoying in the past to me but Bill embodies him with an outstanding performance that adds far more gravitas to the character than we have ever seen before.
Overall It Chapter Two is an enjoyable ride, albeit a slightly disappointing one from what I was expecting. Whilst it has a lot of highs and does develop the source material in interesting ways I think that it still pales slightly when compared to the original and that’s why it gets a…
Obviously I’d love to hear your thoughts on IT Chapter Two and if you agree with me or not. Comment below and let me know!