directed by Tommy Lee Wallace
based on a novel by Stephen King
with: Harry Anderson, Richard Masur, Tim Reid, Richard Thomas, Dennis Christopher, Annette O'Toole, John Ritter, Tim Curry, Seth Green, Brandon Crane, Jonathan Brandis, Olivia Hussey
I remembered being excessively frightened by this movie when I was a kid. I had nightmares with Pennywise and I was afraid of sewers for a while. Agh, scary memories. I decided to watch it again to finally get over it a few days ago and it still contains some of the fearful ideas it used to have in the nineties. It is a horror movie, not for kids, but childish in many ways. It is scary, not explicitly but idealistically, and it is long, with over 3 hours of footage. It is so early nineties that it is hard to dislike. The director made some really good decisions when making this film. The clown almost always looks directly at the camera, which reminds the viewer that he is in a movie, but that at the same time he can almost reach out and eat you. It has some very cheesy moments, some funny moments, and some family-friendly scenes that change the rhythm of the movie. At the same time it contains horrifying, imaginative moments that will traumatize some of the younger kids who are attracted by balloons. In essence the movie is only about childhood fears, overcoming them and being haunted by them sometimes in adult life. It is about living in a particular context that influences your future adult life. Everything is about context and about childhood memories. The last 30 minutes are absolutely terrible (they ruined the good second impression I was having), conceptually and cinematographically, but overall It is a good enough and creative adaptation that will keep you with your eyes open for a few hours.
Worth a look.