27 years after the horrific events that took place in Derry, New Hampshire in 1989, the “Loser’s Club” — now in their late 30s — are back in the old town and looking to settle this nightmarish Pennywise shit (hauntings, spookings, self-reflections) once and for all.

Let me tell you something — if on the cusp of 40 you’re still seriously haunted or even psychologically imprisoned by your childhood traumas — if you’re seriously inhibited or impaired by bad shit that happened when you were nine or ten years old and you can’t seem to get past it, then you’ve got a serious problem on your hands. Most people get past their childhood shit, but here you are still frowning and fretting and grinding your teeth about it. The applicable terms are (a) arrested development and (b) pity party.

I for one don’t give a damn if you resolve your problems with Pennywise and the other bugaboos or not. You can all take a walk in a swamp

You didn’t have to be a megaplex moron to rave about the first It film, but it probably helped if you were. It (’17) was not a Hollywood Elsewhere film, and the same probably goes for the forthcoming sequel — It Chapter Two. The It films are for popcorn munchers — lowbrows who prefer their horror films to howl and jolt and gush blood and vomit in their laps.

And I love the fact that the there’s no colon or dash between It and Chapter Two on the poster — it’s like the filmmakers are shouting “hello, idiots…over here!”

Muschietti Kicked Out Of Val Lewton Club,” posted on 9.6.17:

“I saw It (Warner Bros., 9.8) last night, and I’m sorry but it’s shit. Did I just say that? Would it sound less damning if I called it an It sandwich?

“What I mean is that the movie I saw at Loews Lincoln Square felt like shit to me — professionally polished but with a sensibility that felt coarse and calculating to a fare-thee-well. It’s basically a low-rent scare-a-thon for the none-too-brights… tediously familiar (small Maine town, Stephen King porridge, pre-teen pallies doing the Stand By Me thing) and strictly aimed at those who need a “holy shit!” or “oh, Jesus, that was gross!” moment every five or six minutes.

“Sorry, dude, but I have aesthetic standards. It radiates pro-level assurance from a character, dialogue and general compositional standpoint, but the spooky/scary moments (most of which involve Bill Skarsgård‘s demonic clown, i.e., ‘Pennywise’) are used too often, and are too in-your-face.

“As scary flicks go I prefer subtle chills and tingles (the kind that producer Val Lewton provided in the ’40s, and which 21st Century audiences encountered in Andy Muschietti‘s Mama, Robert EggersThe Witch and Jennifer Kent‘s The Babadook) rather than torrents of blood gushing out of a bathroom sink. 

I recognize that most American moviegoers love the blood-torrents approach, and that mine is a minority view. Nonetheless there’s no question that (a) I have better taste in scary cinema, and (b) that most American horror fans are popcorn-munching boobs.

It is expected to make at least $60 million this weekend and possibly earn three times that overall. This tells you a lot about the taste levels of your average American moviegoer.

“I was cautiously optimistic before last night’s showing because of Muschietti’s direction. I was expecting or at least hoping that he might duplicate some of those subtle, fleeting, spine-chill moments that he and producer Guillermo del Toro brought to Mama. No such luck.

“Muschietti’s thinking seems to have been ‘if I play it too adult and classy, the fans of Walmart-level horror films will tune out. I have to keep goosing them, over and over…one shock moment every few minutes. If the dumbshits don’t tell their friends that it’s their kind of horror film, IT will go belly-up and I may have a bit of difficulty scoring my next highly-paid gig.”

“I’m presuming that Muschietti was leaned on by three It producers with flagrantly nonVal Lewtonish instinctsRoy Lee (The Grudge, The Ring), Don Lin (Gangster Squad, Lego Movie, Lego Batman Movie) and Seth Grahame-Smith (author of Pride and Prejudice and Zombies and Abraham Lincoln, Vampire Hunter).

“In my mind these guys are demonic — Satan incarnate.”