The Hidden Meaning in IT – Earthling Cinema
What if an alien in the future stumbled upon Andrés Muschietti’s IT? Welcome to Earthling Cinema, where we examine the last remaining artifacts of a once-proud culture and try to understand what human lives were like before their planet was destroyed. I’m your host, Garyx Wormuloid.
This week’s film:
Stars: Roy Lee, Dan Lin, Seth Grahame-Smith, David Katzenberg, Barbara Muschietti
Director: Andrés Muschietti
Production Co: Warner Bros. Pictures
Written by: AJ Unitas and Kevin Winzer
Directed by: Jared Bauer
Analysis by: Kevin Winzer
Starring: Mark Schroeder (https://twitter.com/mark_schroeder)
Edited by: Ryan Hailey (http://www.ryanhaileydotcom.com/)
Original Music by: David Krystal (http://www.davidkrystalmusic.com)
Opening Animation by: Danny Rapaport
Produced by: Jacob S. Salamon and Emily Dunbar
The Hidden Meaning in IT – Earthling Cinema
Greetings, and welcome to Earthling Cinema. I am your host, Garyx Wormuloid. This week’s artifact is IT, based on the novel by the sovereign of intellectual property, King Stephen, and starring the cutest Skarsgardian of the Galaxy.
The film takes place in an alternate reality where Earth children rode bikes everywhere, known as the 80s. Our sort of protagonist is Bill Den-bro, who despite his name, breaks the first rule of bro code when he lets an unemployed artist eat his brother.
A year passes, and Bill’s still butt-hurt about his dead brother — “He’s dead!” — so his loser friends search the septic tank with him, only to find it more barren than my first wife. A local hussy named Bev, short for Beverage, joins the crew to up the diversity and the boys’ blood pressure.
And as stranger things start happening, the kids make a shocking discovery: the only haunted-looking house in town is haunted.”That’s where It lives.” Turns out, the artist is actually a boggart named Pennywise, whose preferred pronoun is It… Dad!
When Pennywise totally screws with their analog powerpoint, the kids try Plan A: walk into Its traphouse, since Bev probably took all their Plan B. And after successfully stabbing Its head, they disband for no reason. That is, until Pennywise teen-naps Bev to show her his latest installation. Bill and Co. save her ‘cause they hate modern art and take turns punching It — even though they could have done that at literally any time. Pennywise goes down the pipes back to the Mushroom Kingdom, and the most rockin’ summer ever ends, like all rockin’ summers — with a blood oath.
At its core, IT is about battling fear and is not at all about child orgies. Pennywise lives in the sewers beneath Derry’s surface, reflecting the subconscious nature of its attacks and how hard it is to find a good one-bedroom. Famed Psychopath, Siggy Freudster would call this amalgamation of subconscious concerns into one representative token “condensation.” I call it, “Dad”…Dad!
Ed’s fear of disease is baked into this dude with eczema. The painting in Stan’s father’s office represents the pressure on Stan to learn how to read. “The rabbi’s son can’t finish his own Torah reading.” The bloody scene in Beverage’s bathroom reflects her insecurities about her changing body, as it’s quickly losing carbonation.
The film explores the conditions under which fear and evil may flourish. Pennywise finds a comfortable home in Derry because the adults are indifferent to the town’s problems, like the high murder rate, constant Amber Alerts, or the lurking killer: childhood obesity. By feigning ignorance to these issues, the adults enable it — just as they allow bullying and racism to do its thang.
The film suggests that being alone renders one more vulnerable to fear, and to spending the entire day naked on the couch. Throughout the film, It attacks victims one on one, cause it’s not really into group stuff. The antidote to indifference and isolation is friendship! Okay, it’s AXT-4000D. The Losers are only able to defeat it by facing it together and sharing their emotional burdens, even though all they had to do was hit it with a stick. When Bev decides to go all Terri Shivo, it’s Ben’s gesture of friendship that snaps her out of it — a classic “true love’s first base.”
Like many King Stephen IPs, IT is about coming of age to legally bone. The film is an allegory for the transition from childhood to young adulthood, also known as, the hood. In the beginning, the characters are helpless children, controlled by their overbearing parents and the bullies who terrorize them. “You’re trash! But at least now you’ll smell better!” They are painfully aware of characteristics that make them different – for Billy, it’s his oral — “Your-your-your hair.” — for Ben it’s everything except his personality, and for Mike, it’s being the only black character in the movie. “We’re all afraid of something.” But as the children unify and battle the monster, they learn to assert power over their own lives, graduating from helpless children to helpless teens.
Despite its uplifting message, the film makes it clear that evil, much like herpes, can never be eradicated without a ray gun. Just as Pennywise will inevitably wake up in 27 years — “This stuff seems to happen every 27 years.” — Evil such as racism and abuse will eventually rise up and get a hit movie, too. And it did, in the 2075 box office hit, “Racism & Abuse Save Christmas.”
For Earthling Cinema, I’m Garyx Wormuloid. What goes up, must come clown.