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WATCH: Everything right and wrong with the new IT trailer

Bad news for those of you out there who suffer from coulrophobia.

The trailer for the new movie adaptation of Stephen King’s It has just been released and it’s definitely going to give you chills.

Warner Bros. released the first poster for the film on Tuesday, and then followed up with the trailer yesterday.

The new adaptation of the film is directed by Andy Muschietti, who previously was at the helm of the 2013 horror Mama.

Actor Bill Skarsgård is taking on the role of Pennywise the Clown alongside Finn Wolfhard, Jaeden Lieberher, Jack Dylan Grazer, Wyatt Oleff, Chosen Jacobs and Jeremy Ray Taylor, who play children terrorised by the evil creature.

It was first written in 1986 as a horror novel by American author Stephen King. In 1990, the roughly 1000-page book was then adapted into a two-part TV series that scared the crap out of me. I saw it alone one night in 1993 when it popped up on Aussie TV and the whole family was in bed. I had already read the book (I was a massive King fan) and thought I could handle it. I couldn’t.

In that version, Tim Curry portrayed the iconic clown that preys on the children in the 1950s and then returns to haunt them as adults in the 1980s.

Check it the trailer for the 2017 version of It below and then we’ll have a chat about it:

The trailer opens with unlucky kid Georgie making a paper boat. It’s a dark and stormy day so why not go play outside? Bad idea, Georgie. Anyway, the boat ends up in the drain, and this is when we get a first look at Pennywise, who lurks inside.

In another post, I have already mentioned that I’m not totally onboard with the design choices behind the new Pennywise, and this scene confirms by doubts.

I stand by my contention that the key to what makes this scene scary is the incongruity of seeing a candy-colored clown in a drain. It just doesn’t work the same with the new Pennywise. Don’t believe me? Check out the side-by-side below and tell me which is scarier:

Now a fully-grown man, the 1990 version of that scene still gives me chills. Not so the 2017.

Moving along, the next important scene in the trailer is the “projector scene”. The group of children are gathered in an attic looking though slides when suddenly it starts glitching and Pennywise appears on the screen.

In the original book and 1990 version, this scene occurs while the children are looking through a photo album. In this case, I think the 2017 version is actually an improvement, thanks to the natural suspense created by the clicking of the slides and some excellent sound design. For the sake of comparison, here is the 1990 version:

The trailer ends with a final shot of Georgie and his brother in the sewers. Here, the director opts for a rather generic jump scare and has Pennywise dash at the camera. Yawn.

Overall, the trailer has an even mix of good choices and dubious ones. The 1990 version was no classic, but I still tend to go with my intuition that Curry’s Pennywise is superior.

And although I may not agree with everything about the new It, I’ll definitely be checking the movie later this year. Actually, I may even reread the book first. Good winter reading!

It opens in Australia on September 7th.

About the author

Stefan is an Adelaide-based freelance writer. In his spare time, he plays tennis badly, collects vinyl and brushes up on his Mandarin. Follow Stefan on Twitter

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