Movie Review: “Evil Dead” 2013

evil_dead_2013-posterI’m just going to get this out of the way first: I’m not really a fan of the original Evil Dead (I know, blasphemy!). Evil Dead 2 is good fun, and Army of Darkness has the hilarity, but I always felt like Sam Raimi was actually trying to make a horror movie the first time around, rather than a parody, and that the franchise simply spiraled in that direction when people found the first one absurd (which it is). This is just my opinion.

So, fast-forward thirty-two years to the new remake. Eschewing the low-budget effects of the original, the remake looks like the high-quality 2013 movie that it is, complete with excruciatingly realistic effects and enough gore to suppress your appetite for a week. And though it relies primarily on shock value, the shocks are good—some scenes had even this horror veteran cringing in disgust. But does it hold up to the original, or, for that matter, to today’s standards?

Yes and no.

Despite some seriously over-the-top moments (raining blood?) and some obvious nods to the original (Lost hand? Check. Chainsaw? You better believe it), the 2013 remake was surprisingly humorless. More of a straight-up horror in the splatterpunk vein, the movie delivers every gruesome moment with sincerity and adrenaline. The type of horror that this movie inhabits is not one of creeping, insidious possibilities or subtle, haunting moments: it’s the kind that makes your skin crawl because of how horrifyingly gross and sometimes sadistic it can be. In this way, it is scary—though not, perhaps, the type of “scary” that usually draws me in. Still, that scene with the nail gun was pretty gross-tastic.

As was this chick, who decided it was about time to cut her face off.

As was this chick, who decided it was about time to cut her face off.

On the whole, it’s a good movie. It’s entertaining, will make you jump, and has some truly visceral imagery. It retains many plot elements from the original, right down to the cellar entrance, and it attempts to give its standard young adult characters some personality before it slices them to bits. We even have some semblance of a plotline outside of the simple horror device, as we arrive at the cabin for an intervention for a girl who has OD’d on drugs too many times. Her brother, who was never there for her, tries to resume a place in her life, while her friends try to get her clean. Drugs and horror go well together: there’s that terrible unknown in terms of supernatural events. Is it real, or is it just a drug-induced hallucination? They don’t play on this too much, though, because everyone already knows what’s going on. We’ve seen the original.

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The main problem with this movie is that, once it was over, I was left thinking… so what? What was the point to any of that? I was entertained, but was left shrugging and immediately moving on to something else. Obviously slasher movies do not exist to make you think, but I have a hard time resolving the fact that this movie came out after The Cabin in the Woods.

For me, The Cabin in the Woods was a game-changer in the horror/slasher genre—more specifically in the young-adults-go-to-a-creepy-cabin-in-the-woods-and-are-picked-off-by-the-undead. This is literally the exact premise of The Evil Dead, right down to the moment when you scream at the characters not to read the freaking Latin. This kind of movie coming out in 1981 makes sense. The ‘70s and ‘80s were, after all, the height of slasher horror. But in 2013, when we’ve had  a meta parody that turns this particular plot on its head, and does so in a thought-provoking and hilarious manner? After that, I sort of wonder if it’s even possible to do a simple teens-in-the-woods movie anymore. It’s done, it’s over, it’s dead. Move on. I’m not sure there’s a place for it here in this rapidly changing 21st century where we are constantly questioning old tropes and reinventing genres.

Is The Evil Dead remake a bad movie? No, I’ve seen far, far worse. Is it an entertaining, gory romp? Of course. Is it worth a watch for horror fans and, especially, Evil Dead aficionados? Duh. But, at the end of the day, does it offer anything new to the horror genre? No. But I’ll probably see the sequel anyway.

(On a side note, I’m curious about them remaking Evil Dead 2—which was itself a remake, of sorts, of the original. So will this be a remake of a remake of a remake?)

Unless you have a weak stomach, you probably won’t regret watching it. But you also probably won’t see a point in ever watching it again.

FINAL VERDICT

Plot: 4 out of 10 bloody Necronomicon pages

Acting: 5 out of 10 bloody Necronomicon pages

Visuals: 9 out of 10 bloody Necronomicon pages

Music: 8 out of 10 bloody Necronomicon pages

Script: 6 out of 10 bloody Necronomicon pages

Scare Factor: 9 out of 10 bloody Necronomicon pages

Overall: 6.5 out of 10 bloody Necronomicon pages

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Movie Review: “The Lords of Salem” (2013)

lords-of-salem

Rob Zombie (better known for his band White Zombie than for his Halloween remakes) is back at the business of making movies with The Lords of Salem, a movie about Satanists, witches who like to get naked, and the Devil’s music, with a little Rosemary’s Baby thrown in there.

I wanted to like this movie. It takes place in Salem, famous for its 17th century witch trials (and still capitalizing on this through museums, witchy gift shops, and palm readers on every corner). It has a punk heroine with blonde dreadlocks. It’s filled with strange, creepy imagery and eerie music. But there’s a difference between being artistic and being confusing, and Rob Zombie misses the mark there.

Heidi is a DJ at a local rock station in Salem (which we never really get to see… makes me wish they’d shot on location). When a record filled with disturbing music appears, they play it on the radio, though it seems to put all the women in town in a trance, and it gives Heidi vivid hallucinations of a coven of witches from the 1600s who liked to strip and dance around a fire. Heidi’s character is botched by the lackluster script, Sheri Moon Zombie’s inability to show more than one facial expression, and the unsure way she delivers all her lines, as though she, too, can’t believe the stupidity of the script.

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A warning for those who haven’t seen the movie: here there be spoilers.

After a series of nonsensical scenes meant only to provide disturbing images to the viewer, and some trippy episodes that make you feel as though you’re on some psychedelic drugs, Heidi finds herself at the mercy of the witches (reincarnated in the form of her landlady and her tea-loving spinster friends). She is raped not only by a Satanist priest (orally, which begs the question: why doesn’t she just bite down?) but also by some butt-ugly gnome thing that I believe is the Devil. As to the latter, I can only assume that’s what was happening, since the scene shows her holding two of the gnome thing’s tentacles and shaking around. After what is perhaps the strangest rape scene in any movie ever, Heidi gives birth to a squid-baby that I assume will grow up to be Cthulhu. Or the Antichrist.

After more nonsensical imagery, we see Heidi triumphant over a pile of bodies that were once the hypnotized women of Salem. Over the end credits, we learn that she is officially missing. Then we see her playing with her dog. I’m… still not totally sure what that’s all about.

Aside for some of the interesting visuals, the only real redeeming factor of this movie was the effective music. The few droning notes of the Devil’s music is perfectly dark and demonic. Give it a listen and try not to creep yourself out too much. Unfortunately, the wonderfully macabre score was not enough to save the movie.

All I can say to Rob Zombie is: Go back to making music.

FINAL VERDICT

Plot: 3 out of 10 squid babies

Acting: 4 out of 10 squid babies

Visuals: 8 out of 10 squid babies

Music: 9 out of 10 squid babies

Script: 2 out of 10 squid babies

Scare Factor: 6 out of 10 squid babies

Overall: 5 out of 10 squid babies

Movie Review: “Hitchcock” (2012)

HitchcockOkay, I admit, this movie does not fall under the category of “horror”—but it does contain certain elements of the genre, aside from being about the Master of Suspense’s first foray into horror filmmaking with Psycho.

We open with a creepy scene of Ed Gein, the real-life inspiration behind Norman Bates of Psycho fame. Then that classic music from “Hitchcock Presents” (“Funeral March of the Marionettes,” for those who many not know) starts to play, and Hitchcock himself comes out with some clever narration. Of course, it isn’t actually Hitchcock, but Anthony Hopkins’ impressive transformation into Hitch (as his friends called him). Over the top in a completely believable way, his performance was one of the most engaging aspects of the movie.

Much of the movie follows the struggle to get Psycho made, when everyone seemed to think it was a terrible idea, and the strained relationship between Hitchcock and his wife, Alma. As Psycho is dragged into existence against all odds, Hitch experiences moments of mental breakdown, hallucinating Ed Gein himself (whose advice, needless to say, implores Hitch to go down a much darker path). In one excellent moment of emotional distress and frustration, Hitchcock mimes the infamous shower scene, stabbing the air just above a realistically-screaming Janet Leigh (portrayed surprisingly well by Scarlett Johansson). This recreation is one of the movie’s best scenes.

But the true hero of the movie is the one who saves Hitchcock from certain failure with his poorly-cut, soundtrack-less film: his wife, Alma (Helen Mirren). In perhaps the most moving of the movie’s scenes, Alma divulges what it’s like to be an equal partner, creatively, but always a background figure of the great Alfred Hitchcock. When it seems that all is lost, she is the one who helps him re-cut the movie into the classic it is today, and she is the one who insists on adding the soundtrack—those unsurpassable shrieking violins that immediately set any moviegoer’s hair on end. It is, I believe, the best horror movie music that has ever been written.

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Though we already know from the beginning that Psycho is destined for greatness, the execution of the movie is so impeccable that I still found myself wondering, how are they going to pull this off? It’s still just as much of a triumph when they do. The audience’s reactions are priceless. And, in a victory for women-behind-the-man everywhere, Alma gets her well-deserved recognition when Hitch pulls her up beside him before the press, presenting them as equals in filmmaking and in life. I won’t devolve into feminist rhetoric here, but this movie gave me a nice feeling of female power and pride, even though Alma has always been eclipsed by her famous husband.

You may think you know Hitchcock and the movie Psycho, but it’s truly captivating to watch the makings of the classic play out on screen, from the first spark of inspiration to the final moments when everyone else realizes what Hitch knew all along: that this was to be a film for the ages, and one that has still endured in the public consciousness over fifty years later.

If you haven’t already, I just have two words for you: See it.

FINAL VERDICT

Plot: 9 out of 10 shrieking violins

Acting: 9 out of 10 shrieking violins

Visuals: 8 out of 10 shrieking violins

Music: 10 out of 10 shrieking violins

Script: 9 out of 10 shrieking violins

Overall: 9 out of 10 shrieking violins

Movie Review: “Stoker” (2013)

Stoker posterDon’t let the title fool you—this psychological thriller has nothing to do with the father of vampire literature, Bram Stoker. Yet there is something fitting about this connection, for the title invites the same Gothic sensibility, which is very present in this macabre movie.

The film’s namesake is India Stoker, a troubled girl whose father dies in a car wreck on her eighteenth birthday. Mystery envelops the nature of this accident when an uncle she never knew she had shows up at the funeral, and India’s equally-troubled mother (brought to life by Nicole Kidman) invites him to stay with them in their rustic, woodland house. It would appear that Uncle Charlie has spent the last eighteen years traveling the world—yet something about him is not quite right, evidenced by India’s great aunt, who tries to warn them of something before she disappears.

Initially, the plot takes a Hamlet-esque turn as the thoughtful and melancholy India observes Uncle Charlie successfully wooing her mother. Disturbed by the strange, almost-but-not-quite-incestuous relationship, the girl who is afraid of being touched runs off to recreate her mother and uncle’s makeout session with a boy from school, who has stood up for her in the face of outrageous bullies. The encounter takes a turn for the worst when we learn the boy isn’t actually the nice guy he appears, and Uncle Charlie comes to her dark and gruesome rescue. Though India has been extremely distrustful of him so far, their bond is now cemented by a terrible secret.

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Don’t look in there! It’s not just ice cream!

The mystery surrounding Uncle Charlie begins to unravel after an awful discovery in their basement freezer, as well as a stack of letters India finds hidden away in her father’s desk. There is more to the letters than it initially appears. I won’t give too much away, because the revelations are so well sequenced as the tension mounts to a violent climax.

It’s rare to find such an artful horror movie, and it is here that Stoker rises above most other horror fare by leaps and bounds. Some might be hesitant to categorize it as such, but it deftly covers many horror tropes in a visually-stunning, engrossing hour and a half. I argue that this is not only horror, but it is what horror should strive to be. Folks, this is a horror movie done right: a movie that shows us that not all horror must be cheap, gore-filled trash, but rather there is such a thing as artistic, moving horror—something that I, personally, try to emulate in my writing.

Above: India Stoker, surrounded by shoes: an identical pair for every birthday. Her secret gift-giver doesn't have much in the way of fashion sense.

Above: India Stoker, surrounded by shoes: an identical pair for every birthday. Her secret gift-giver doesn’t have much in the way of fashion sense.

Stoker really succeeds on all levels: stylistic editing, Gothic visuals, a clever script, spot-on acting, and a truly haunting piano score (I can’t stress how important music is in horror movies). Though the few schoolmates we meet are a bit painfully over the top, that’s easily forgiven in light of the artistry at work in the movie. Nicole Kidman is a perfect emotionally-distant yet somehow neglected mother, and Mia Wasikowska provides great depth to what might otherwise be a one-dimensional troubled teen character.

Hey, Hollywood: are you listening? This is what you need to emulate if you want to create a brilliant horror movie. Stop relying on cheap shocks. The insidious draw of this movie trumps any jump scares you might throw at us.

FINAL VERDICT

Plot: 9 out of 10 mysterious shoeboxes

Acting: 9 out of 10 mysterious shoeboxes

Visuals: 10 out of 10 mysterious shoeboxes

Music: 10 out of 10 mysterious shoeboxes

Scare factor: 7 out of 10 mysterious shoeboxes

Overall: 9 out of 10 mysterious shoeboxes

*Please note that I watched this movie on a plane, and it was edited for content. Apparently, they cut out at least one entire scene, so I’ll have to see the full unedited version—but it didn’t feel as though I was missing anything when I watched.

Movie Review: Sinister

Last week I was gearing up for the release of a promising new movie with Guillermo del Toro’s name attached: Mama. Unfortunately, it disappointed me, leaving me to wonder where I might find a horror movie that wouldn’t. I ended up watching 2012’s Sinister and was pleasantly surprised.

The movie is about a true crime writer who envelops himself in his work to the degree that he moves his unknowing family to the scene of a recent murder, where someone hanged a family and kidnapped the sole surviving child. The writer, played by Ethan Hawke, discovers an old projector and several reels of disturbing home movies in which families are murdered in different ways.

After viewing the movies, which prove quite sinister indeed, we viewers are left with two questions: 1. Who filmed these movies? and 2. Who is the demonic figure that appears in the background of all the killings?

Something about this movie struck me as Stephen King-esque: perhaps the cynical writer who has a strained relationship with his wife and children, or the strange, eclectic soundtrack that reminded me of The Shining. But it had its own unique flavor as well, using the “found footage” trope to bloodcurdling success (the image of the family hanging on the tree is particularly eerie). I also got hints of The Ring from the movie. Funny enough, it turns out writer C. Robert Cargill’s inspiration for Sinister came from a nightmare he had after watching The Ring. In the nightmare, he discovers a film in his attic of a family being hanged.

One of the best horror films of 2012. If you haven’t seen it yet, give yourself a spooky treat and get a copy of Sinister when it comes out on DVD on February 19th!

FINAL VERDICT

Plot: 9 out of 10 super-8 snuff films

Acting: 8 out of 10 super-8 snuff films

Visuals: 9 out of 10 super-8 snuff films

Music: 6.5 out of 10 super-8 snuff films

Scare factor: 8 out of 10 super-8 snuff films

Overall: 8 out of 10 super-8 snuff films

Movie Review: V/H/S

It’s been a while since I’ve seen a good horror movie that deserved a review here on Pandora’s Pen… and it looks like I’ll be waiting longer still for a worthy contender. In the meantime, let’s have a look (and maybe a laugh) at 2012’s flop of a found-footage feature, V/H/S.

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I wanted to like this movie, and there were certainly some cool aspects of it, but overall it just didn’t gel. The premise is simple: some guys get hired to break into a house and steal a rare VHS tape. Yet the simple storyline got unnecessarily convoluted by the other storylines weaving their way through the main one.

What happens in the movie involves these guys watching the found footage on the VHS they’re looking for, but what the audience sees is a bunch of seemingly random vignettes hastily taped together around the framework of the thieves, which, because it is also shot with a handheld camera, doesn’t stand out at all as the frame of the movie. They don’t make it clear when we’re seeing the tapes that these boys are watching vs. tapes that the boys are taping themselves. The confusion with this storyline caused the bulk of this viewer’s disappointment. The other disappointing factors involved the moviemaker’s apparent infatuation with sex and nudity.

Obviously, sex and nudity happen in horror movies. It’s just a thing. But when there are boobs thrown at you in virtually every scene, as well as the almost-gang-rape scene (which thankfully ended with the girl transforming into a monster and devouring the men), it just gets annoying. Couple that with the terrible dialogue, and you might think this movie was written by a couple of horny teenage boys.

But onto the better parts: some of the effects were done surprisingly well, which was actually helped by the VHS-quality of the footage. Though it got annoying to watch an entire movie in such low quality (in this age of BluRay and HD), this did allow for some spooky moments… like the guy who you can’t ever fully see in the tape because it gets pixilated around him. Kudos to them for realizing what you can’t see is often scarier than what you can!

The girl from the scene-that-was-almost-a-gang-rape also turned out to be pretty creepy. Her voice, even before we knew she was a monster, was messed up on the tape, and when she revealed herself… well, she looked like this:

girl from vhs

Not sure why she was split down the middle, but it definitely gave her an otherworldly creepiness that saved the scene.

The other found footage ranges from equally creepy to stupid, but you can tell from the hints of atmosphere and the way the filmmakers used the found footage trope that this movie had the potential for greatness. Had it lived up to that potential, it could have been 2012’s sleeper hit and a downright scary movie to boot. Instead, the shoddy splicing of the tapes, the poor dialogue, and the unclear framework crumbled the movie from an original creep-fest to just another mediocre addition to the found-film genre. Alas.

FINAL VERDICT

Story concept: 9 out of 10 creepy VHS tapes

Execution of plot: 5 out of 10 creepy VHS tapes

Script: 4 out of 10 creepy VHS tapes

Acting: 5 out of 10 creepy VHS tapes

Cinematography and visuals: 8 out of 10 creepy VHS tapes

Music and atmospheric sound effects: 6 out of 10 creepy VHS tapes

Scare factor: 7 out of 10 creepy VHS tapes

Overall: 6 out of 10 creepy VHS tapes

Don’t just take my word for it! If you want to come to your own conclusions about the movie, go watch V/H/S for yourself right here!

The Madness of Edgar Allan Poe: A Love Story

This year, the haunted house experience is getting a makeover with the popularity of interactive horror plays like Delusion: The Blood Rite here in L.A. As we Halloween lovers stretch our creative wings, the Halloween experience becomes more unique, and these kinds of plays seem to be a new type of activity that will soon become popular among lovers of horror and hauntings.

“The Madness of Edgar Allan Poe: A Love Story” is a Chicago attraction taking place at the Peabody mansion on the Mayslake estate. The mansion is surrounded by a forest preserve, and the play tells the story of Poe’s life, interwoven with depictions of his stories and poems. This is the personal account of the play I got from my mom and sister, who both went this Halloween:

Library at “The Madness of Edgar Allan Poe”

“A lot of important women in Poe’s life died of consumption: his mother, the woman who took him in, and his wife. He went to live with an aunt and cousin, and he married the cousin, Virginia, when she was 13. He had a love story with Virginia until she died at a young age. We walked to different rooms for different scenes. We were divided into two groups of about 35, so it was an intimate setting, close to the actors.

“Some of the depicted work was: The Bells, Ligeia, Tell-Tale Heart, The Pit and the Pendulum, Masque of the Red Death, The Raven, and Annabelle Lee. The mansion was dark and creepy and the acting very good, especially the actors who were mad. In the Pit and the Pendulum, we were in total darkness and listened to the prisoner talk so we could experience what he did. The actor for the Tell-Tale Heart was very creepy in his madness.

“The show focuses on various aspects of who Poe was: his manic states, depressive states, his longing for Virginia, his hatred of consumption, and his love of all things macabre. We all started together in the library and split off into two groups, so there was a lot of walking, sitting, and standing throughout the two hours. The actors really embraced their characters and made their stories believable.

“It’s a great way to spend an evening around Halloween if you do not want to go to the scary haunted houses with people jumping out at you.”

If you’re interested in an alternative to the typical haunted house, preferring a creepy atmosphere and Gothic setting to jump scares, then this type of play could be just what you’re looking for this Halloween. I’d love to attend one of these sometime, as they seem to be a new innovation in the mix of interactivity, acting, and a Halloween setting.

Of course, a nice free way to travel through spooky scenes can be done from the comfort of your own computer. Check out what else is going on in the Coffin Hop, and don’t forget to enter my contest to win a signed copy of my book, and more!

“Sometimes I’m terrified of my heart; of its constant hunger for whatever it is it wants. The way it stops and starts.”

—Edgar Allan Poe

Stephen Kingapalooza

In light of the post I recently made about how Stephen Knig’s IT is going to be remade into 2 movies, I thought I should also share some more interesting info that I’ve just received. If you’re a King fan, brace yourself: 2013 is going to be a phantasmagoria of remakes and new adaptations to get you salivating.

Stephen “I am more successful than all of you plebians put together” King

All of the following information comes from this article.

We’ve got a list of not one, not two, but TEN adaptations to get through here. Starting with…

1. CARRIE

Hard to top psycho Sissy Spacek as a blood-drenched telekenetic prom queen, but they’re sure gonna try. I’m actually excited about this one because it looks like they want to make it “darker and more psychological” than the original, and those are two words I absolutely love. Also, Chloe Moretz will be playing the title role, and I think she’s got enough talent to pull this one off.

2. THE EYES OF THE DRAGON

Look to the SyFy channel for this TV series. I never read this one, but it seems to be a fantasy involving dragons and such.

3. IT

I already made a post about this one, so you can just go read that.

4. ROSE MADDER

Not sure how this one is going to turn out. Even King himself doesn’t seem to be much of a fan of the novel, calling it a “stiff, try-too-hard” mix of domestic violence and Greek mythology. However, seeing as I’m obviously a fan of Greek mythology, since it plays a big part in my upcoming novel, PANDORA, I might be inclined to check this one out.

5. PET SEMATARY

The script writer for 1408, Matthew Greenberg, and director Alexandre Aja of The Hills Have Eyes (and other winners like Piranha 3D…) come together for this second adaptation. Nothing is solid yet, so it might still be a while before we see it, but I could get behind this update.

6. 11/22/63

King’s newest book about going back in time to stop the Kennedy assassination is already preparing for the big screen. Unsurprisingly, it’s another massive book, so they’ll have to pick and choose what to focus on. I haven’t read this one yet, but it’s not King’s first foray into the political spectrum, his other one beingThe Dead Zone, which was both a movie and a TV series.

7. A GOOD MARRIAGE

A psychological thriller with a rather bland title, this one is a short story from his recent collection, Full Dark, No Stars. Can it live up to his other successfully adapted short stories like Secret Window and 1408?

8. UNDER THE DOME

Steven Spielberg himself plans to turn this book about a town that gets trapped under a mysterious dome into a Showtime series, with the script written by Brian K. Vaughan of LOST. Sounds like a winning combo, especially since it seems like premium cable series seems to be the best way to go with books and book series these days, with the success of shows like Dexter and Game of Thrones.

9. THE TEN O’CLOCK PEOPLE

Another short story, another movie, another tale about a guy who tries to quit smoking (we get it, King, you used to be a smoker). Maybe it’s about people who have bedtimes before midnight.

10. THE DARK TOWER

This one is going to bridge the movie-series gap and become not only a trilogy of movies, but also a TV series to bridge the movies together. Sound intense? Yeah, it does to me too. I think maybe they should just stick with just an HBO series for this one, but who knows, maybe the mix of movie and TV will be the perfect medium for this dark fantasy series. And with Ron Howard and Javier Bardem on board, I see success in the near future.

As a writer, I am both salivating over this and also throwing up a little in my mouth. Seriously, King, how much dough have you raked in from all these projects? It seems as though everything he writes becomes a movie. That’s pretty insane considering just how prolific he is. I guess the other side of the coin here is that about half of his adaptations end up being campy and horrible, which goes to show that you really can’t win ’em all… but you sure can try!

Stephen King’s IT Remake: 2 Movies?

I just got an interesting bit of news! Stephen King’s IT is going to be made into two movies.

Cary Fakunaga is going to direct the epic tale of the ancient creature who terrorizes children in the small down of Derry, Maine by manifesting as the thing they fear the most (mainly appearing as the devilish clown, Pennywise).

I’ve been hearing about the IT remake for some time, since Warner Bros picked up the rights to it in 2009. Originally they were going to adapt it into a single movie, but it would appear they’re now planning on doing two. Makes sense, I suppose; how would one even go about trying to jam an 1,100-page tome into a 2.5 hour movie? We’re assuming here that the first movie would revolve around the characters as children and the second would be the adults.

I don’t know how I feel about this… On one hand, I’ve been wanting them to remake IT ever since I stopped having nightmares about the miniseries (age: 6) and decided it was kind of crap. I know we get inundated with remakes in the world of horror cinema, but the miniseries had such unrealized potential that I figured, now with the great visual technology we’ve got, they could really make it a terrifying experience the second time around. Maybe they could even get beyond the simple clown/spider thing and show us a bit of the true Lovecraftian horror that shines in the book yet is completely ignored in the 1990 version.

On the other hand, part of the brilliance of IT is the narrative structure that intertwines the parallel stories of the childhood Loser Club and their amnesiatic adult counterparts, the storylines complementing each other beautifully to the double-climax ending. If you split them apart… it just feels wrong. You can’t unravel the strands of DNA; it’s unnatural. So, too, is unraveling the twined narrative threads of IT, which are so dependent on one another and which, without the other, would feel incomplete.

And while they could certainly make the updated version visually polished, scarier, and a little less silly (really, the entire Chinese food scene is hilarious), I’m not convinced that anyone could ever top Tim Curry’s performance as the infamous Pennywise the Dancing Clown.

I’m sure we’ve still got quite a few more years until the movie(s) appear on our screens, but, as IT is my all-time favorite King book, I can’t help salivating over these morsels of news. What do you think, fellow King fans? Could it work?