Gruesome Reviews Theatrical Reviews

[Review] It: Chapter Two in 4DX – A Night to Remember

Director Andy Muschietti’s follow up to his 2017 hit, It, debuted this weekend with a bigger and “badder” clown, an older and bolder Losers’ Club, and an even more ambitious story.

It: Chapter Two takes place 27-years after the “defeat” of Pennywise (Bill Skarsgard) by our heroes. After a few killer clown-like deaths, Mike (Isaiah Mustafa) believes that Pennywise is back with a vengeance. Following up on their promise to come back if he returns, each companion receives a phone call from Mike, the sole member to remain in Derry, Maine and the only one to retain all of his memories from the previous events.

Overall the film was a success as an entertaining movie-going experience. It was a great time for me and much funnier than I expected. The theater patrons were screaming out, talking to the screen, and even covering their eyes. Nothing says fun like a boisterous audience.

Regal Stonecrest at Piper Glen USA (Charlotte, NC)

This was my first time watching a movie in 4DX and I truly didn’t know what I was missing in my life. With water, wind, special lighting, a moving and vibrating chair, it’s an immersive experience similar to interactive rides. It’s not for every movie or everyone, but my horror-loving ass doesn’t want to see a movie any other way. Goodbye pocketbook, but it’s absolutely worth it and makes going to the theatre special again.

With a 169-minute run time, the story is definitely bloated. Many portions could have been condensed or removed altogether. Henry Bowers (Teach Grant) was released from a mental institution to deliver an epic scene, but ultimately provide no momentum of the story. However, it was typically exciting and I never felt the pacing was too slow or lacked interest. Flashbacks are a large part of the storytelling and were successfully done. The main points of the story are clear and simple. One of the strongest themes is overcoming past trauma. It’s evident when you see Mike living in a library, starkly contrasting the successful lives of his peers who have very little recollection of the previous events.

Beautifully shot scenes and well-acted performances were definitely a win. The adult casting was a near-perfect match for the children in look and style. Bill Hader’s performance as Richie was outstanding and showcased his range with the most fun comedic moments and a tear-jerking scene at the end. The scenes between him and Eddie (James Ransone) are the most memorable. Stephen King himself has a cameo as a moody antique store owner. Known for his epic tension building, but unsatisfying conclusions, he even takes a little jab at himself.

The kill count is remarkably low for a horror film, but there were plenty of teases, chases, and jump scares along the way. My biggest fault with the movie is the heavy reliance on CGI. There is a lot of it. Way too much. Is it good CGI? Yes, but it’s still so disappointing. There is such an overabundance of CGI that you wonder if there is even a movie outside of it.

Nothing will ever beat practical effects for me. Seeing Pennywise out of his clown make-up, but still in prosthetics was amazingly effective. The CGI was so overwhelming that it took away from Bill Skarsgard’s performance. His natural talent and ability to bring the character to life was overwhelmed and overshadowed.

One of my favorite scenes didn’t rely on CGI. Beverly (Jessica Chastain) is trapped in a bathroom stall that fills with glorious blood (reportedly 4,500 gallons). The scene pays homage to great flicks like Carrie and I believe I heard a musical reference to Hellraiser at the tail end as well.

It was in these intense scenes where the 4DX really shined. The seat wobbled and made you feel like you were floating along with Beverly. There were very appropriate and gross water drops and squirts when blood, bites, and legs popped from heads making me laugh and gag just a bit. The intensity of particularly brutal and heart-wrenching fight scene, in the beginning, was almost overwhelming with the jarring chair movements. Every scare was heightened and enhanced.

Any horror lover should check this one out. It’s a solid conclusion to the first and has some great visuals. As with all things, mindset is key. Be prepared for a marathon long ride, don’t overthink it or expect to be scared. And if you want a heightened experience, definitely check out the 4DX!

4DX Theaters

Regal LA Live                                                    USA (Los Angeles, CA) 

CGV Buena Park                                                USA (Buena Park, CA) 

Regal Irvine Spectrum                                    USA (Irvine CA)  

Regal Natomas                                                  USA (Sacramento, CA)

Cinepolis Vista Pointe                                     USA (Vista, CA) 

Cinepolis Pico Rivera                                       USA (Pico Rivera, CA) 

Edwards Mira Mesa                                        USA (San Diego, CA)

Regal, Union Square                                       USA (New York, NY) 

Regal E-Walk                                                      USA (New York, NY)

Regal Pointe Orlando                                      USA (Orlando, FL) 

Regal Kendall Village                                       USA (Miami, FL) 

Regal Avenues 20- Jacksonville                   USA (Jacksonville, FL) 

Regal Naples                                                      USA (Naples, FL) 

Regal Seattle Meridian                                   USA (Seattle, WA) 

Edwards Houston Marq’e                             USA (Houston, TX) 

Regal Warrington Crossing                           USA (Warrington, PA)

Regal UA King Of Prussia                               USA (Philadelphia, PA)

Regal Gallery Place                                          USA (Washington, DC) 

Marcus Gurnee Mills Cinema                      USA (Gurnee, IL) 

Regal Moore Warren                                      USA (Moore, OK) 

Regal Stonecrest at Piper Glen                   USA (Charlotte, NC)

Regal Cinemas Opry Mills                              USA (Nashville, TN)

Regal Pinnacle Stadium 18                            USA (Knoxville, TN)

Regal UA Denver Pavilions                            USA  (Denver, CO)

Regal Cinemas Red Rock                                USA (Las Vegas, NV)

Regal Dole Cannery                                         USA (Honolulu, HI)

Cineplex Cinemas Yonge-Dundas              CANADA (Toronto, ON) 

Cineplex Scotiabank Theatre Chinook      CANADA (Calgary, AB)

ScreenX Theaters

CGV LA                                                                 USA (Los Angeles, CA) 

CGV Buena Park                                                USA (Buena Park, CA) 

Regal Irvine Spectrum                                    USA (Irvine CA)  

Regal Natomas                                                  USA (Sacramento, CA)

Regal Hacienda                                                 USA (Hacienda, CA) 

Regal, Union Square                                       USA (New York, NY) 

Regal Waterford Lake                                     USA (Orlando, FL) 

Regal South Beach                                           USA (Miami, FL) 

Regal Belltower                                                 USA (Fort Myers, FL) 

Regal Thornton Place                                      USA (Seattle, WA) 

Regal Martin Village                                        USA (Lacey, WA) 

Regal Grand Parkway                                     USA (Richmond, TX) 

Edwards Houston Marq*e                            USA (Houston, TX) 

Edwards Greenway Grand Palace              USA (Houston, TX) 

Regal Jewel                                                        USA (Waco, TX)

Regal Warrington Crossing                           USA (Warrington, PA)

Regal Kingstowne                                            USA (Alexandria, VA)

Regal Pinnacle Stadium 18                            USA (Knoxville, TN)

Regal Warren West 17                                    USA (Wichita, KS)

Regal Hollywood Stadium 14                       USA (Topeka, KS)

Regal Atlantic Station                                     USA (Atlanta, GA) 

BnB Liberty 12                                                   USA (Liberty, MO) 

Regal Bridgeport Village                                 USA (Tigard, OR)

Regal Old Mills                                                   USA (Bend, OR)

Regal Dole Cannery                                         USA (Honolulu, HI)

Cineplex Cinemas Queensway                    CANADA (Toronto, ON) 

  • Crystal Cleveland, It: Chapter Two
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Crystal Cleveland
Born and raised in Corpus Christi, TX, Crystal knew from a very young age that she wanted to be an actress.

She began modeling at the age of 4, walking the runway for JCPenney and Sears. Was published in multiple magazines as an adult, and served as inspiration for two comic-based publications. With a theatre background in productions of Les Miserables, Into the Woods, and The Bad Seed she lived throughout Texas and California. During this time, she anchored a local news-based program and worked on several local commercials.

Now living in Charlotte, NC, she is making a heavier transition into Movie/TV-based productions. Recently being cast in a horror-based series out soon.
Crystal Cleveland
Born and raised in Corpus Christi, TX, Crystal knew from a very young age that she wanted to be an actress. She began modeling at the age of 4, walking the runway for JCPenney and Sears. Was published in multiple magazines as an adult, and served as inspiration for two comic-based publications. With a theatre background in productions of Les Miserables, Into the Woods, and The Bad Seed she lived throughout Texas and California. During this time, she anchored a local news-based program and worked on several local commercials. Now living in Charlotte, NC, she is making a heavier transition into Movie/TV-based productions. Recently being cast in a horror-based series out soon.
https://crystalcleveland.com/