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E.C. McMullen Jr.
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E.C. McMullen Jr.
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IN OTHER BOOKS
E.C. McMullen Jr.'s
CEDO LOOKED LIKE PEOPLE
in the anthology
FEAR THE REAPER
"This Ray Bradbury-esque is one of the most memorable and one of the more original stories I've read in a long time."
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The Silver Scream
E.C. McMULLEN Jr.,
GEORGE A. ROMERO,
and many more.
Extensively quoted in
The Unauthorized Companion
Robert S. Rhine's
CIRCUS OF HELL
GAHAN WILSON &
Featuring comics by
E.C. McMullen Jr.
Head Production Designer
JOSEPH CROSS, BRIANA EVIGAN,
Special Effects Make-Up
A SIERRA NEVADA
(MICHAEL MADSEN & JOHN SAVAGE).
It begins with the brutal beating of two gay men. One would have been murdered, except a clown got him first.
This ignites the panic of the only member of The Loser's Club who still lives in Derry, Maine: Mike Hanlon (Isaiah Mustafa: THE CLINIC, SHADOWHUNTERS [TV] - Hey! It's The Old Spice Guy!).
This is the first eye-witness account of The Clown in 27 years, but there's a huge and recent uptick in missing child reports.
Mike calls the other Losers.
However, time passed and with each call, everyone tells Mike that they forgot. They barely remember him and none of them really remember that summer.
They aren't simply shining Mike on, they really don't remember. At least consciously, as we see that every one of them has a physical reaction to the news: It's happening again. Pennywise is back.
A grown-up Eddie Kaspbrak (James Ransone: INSIDE MAN, PROM NIGHT , SINISTER [all], OLD BOY , KRISTY, FUN SIZE HORROR: Volume Two, GEMINI, MOSAIC, FAMILY BLOOD, THE FIRST [TV], CAPTIVE STATE) is driving a vehicle when Mike tells him. He runs a redlight, crashing into another car.
An adult Richie Tozier (Bill Hader: MEN IN BLACK 3, STAR TREK INTO DARKNESS, MONSTERS UNIVERSITY, THE VENTURE BROS. [TV]), now a stand-up comic and seconds before going onstage when Mike tells him, vomits.
All of the adult Losers, now in their early 40s and middle-aged, have their own episode, the worst being Stanley Uris (Andy Bean: ALLIEGIANT, BAD VEGAN AND THE TELEPORTATION MACHINE, TRANSFORMERS: THE LAST KNIGHT, SWAMP THING [TV]). He commits suicide.
All of them have lives and responsibilities to other people. All of them, for reasons they find difficult to explain, immediately drop everything to head back to Derry. They aren't sure why it's so important, they just feel it is.
In addition to Mike, Eddie, Richie, and the late Stanley, we have the adult versions of,
Beverly Marsh is now played by Jessica Chastain (DARK SHADOWS , TAKE SHELTER, INTERSTELLAR, MAMA, CRIMSON PEAK, DARK PHOENIX).
Ben "Fat boy" Hansom is now a hard-bodied adult (Jay Ryan: TERRA NOVA [TV], BEAUTY AND THE BEAST [TV - 2012-2016]).
Mike throws them all a "Homecoming", so to speak, by hiring a private room in a Chinese restaurant.
The adults all gather, note that Stanley isn't there though none know why, yet. During the meal the memories return. All of the good ones about each other, the ones they feel bonded them that summer. Mike notices the shadow in the center of all of their memories and brings up Pennywise (Bill Skarsgård: STARFIGHTER: KENNY BEGINS, HEMLOCK GROVE [TV], ALLEGIANT, ATOMIC BLONDE, DEADPOOL 2, CASTLE ROCK [TV], VILLAINS).
They aren't sure why, but that name throws a wet towel on their great meal and they are ready to leave. The waitress brings them their fortune cookies and all hell breaks loose.
Faced with the indisputable Horror, they all want to go back to their hotel and return to their lives. Mike implores them. He can't fight Pennywise alone.
What we in the audience want to know is, does Pennywise want to chase them away or keep them in Derry forever?
As children they didn't kill Pennywise, but they are the only humans that ever defeated him. Now they're back. Back at a time when Pennywise has developed a taste for adult fear.
27 years earlier, before Pennywise returned to sleep, he released the bodies of his victims, all of which washed away through the sewer pipes in a tsunami of gray water death. All dead except an injured and insane Henry Bowers.
The adult Henry (Teach Grant: DEVOUR, NIGHTMARE , ENEMY WITHIN , HARD RIDE TO HELL, VAMPIRE , THE TALL MAN, LEPRECHAUN: ORIGINS, DEAD RISING: ENDGAME, ONCE THERE WAS WINTER, ALTERED CARBONVAN HELSING [TV]) has spent his years in an insane asylum. Pennywise calls to him. Pennywise is his friend.
Pennywise (Bill Skarsgård: STARFIGHTER: KENNY BEGINS, HEMLOCK GROVE [TV], ALLEGIANT, ATOMIC BLONDE, DEADPOOL 2, CASTLE ROCK [TV]) spent its many centuries hiding in shadows, reaching out with its psychic powers, developing its ability to frighten children. In the town of Derry, it's only succeeded in instilling dread, depression, and at most, despair in adults. None of these are flavors that Pennywise wants. Now Henry can be its physical, murderous avatar.
Okay so the book is done and there can't be anymore sequels.
Like the book, the first movie, and the second, there are less scares to be had with the adult Losers.
Not that such a story cannot be done and done well. Many authors and directors have accomplished just that.
The adult Losers, unlike when they were children first facing Pennywise, have the knowledge of having defeated him before. Pennywise's taunts and fears remain childhood fears. The adults, while startled, are able to talk themselves out of the imaginary horrors that It puts in their minds.
Because they aren't scared as much, we aren't scared as much.
However, children still live in Derry and IT Chapter Two reminds us of that. This time The Losers aren't about saving themselves, they feel obliged to put their experience into saving the children who remain.
While IT Chapter Two isn't as scary a ride as the first part, both movies adhere to Stephen King's original vision than the first TV movie did.
I love Tim Curry and I adore his version of Pennywise in the first IT movie, but that takes nothing from my appreciation of Alexander's interpretation of the creature.
Director Andy Muschietti's IT is simply a much better movie.
Also, that 2 hour and 45 minute run time? Better not buy a drink in the theater because Andy never gives you a pee-break moment.
IT Chapter Two is a non-stop thrill ride!
Four Shriek Girls.
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