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Stephen King's It [DVD] [1990]

  • SKU: 4799187
  • Release Date: 10/01/2002
  • Rating: NR
Terror abounds in the made-for-TV miniseries event Stephen King's It. The film is presented in a newly matted 1.85:1 widescreen edition that is modified from its original form (in other words, black bars have been inserted onto the top and bottom of the original full frame transfer). The image appears to be in better-than-average shape with colors and black levels all solid and well defined. While there appears to be some softness in the picture, overall this transfer should please horror fans everywhere. The soundtrack is presented in an apt Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo mix in English. Since Stephen King's It was originally produced for TV, it's no surprise to find this audio track flat and somewhat boring. However, what this mix lacks in directional effects and fidelity it makes up for with crystal clear dialogue, music and effects. Also included on this disc are English, French and Spanish subtitles. The sole extra feature on this DVD is a commentary track by director Tommy Lee Wallace and actors John Ritter, Richard Thomas, Tim Ried and Dennis Christopher. Filled with some funny asides about the production and witty banter (especially from Ritter), this commentary track is worth the listen for any true Stephen King fans.
$5.99

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    Overview

    Ratings & Reviews


    Overall Customer Rating:
    95% of customers would recommend this product to a friend (922 out of 973)

    Special Features


    • Feature-length audio commentary by Dennis Christopher, Tim Reid, John Ritter, Richard Thomas and director Tommy Lee Wallace
    • Interactive menus
    • Scene access
    • Subtitles: English, Français & Español
    • Closed Captioned

    Synopsis


    It
    Originally titled Stephen King's It, this two-part TV movie first aired on November 18 and 20, 1990. The story starts in Maine, where a small child is lured into the hands of what audiences everywhere can be assured is one mean clown. The 30-year struggle against an evil supernatural force that masquerades as a circus clown named Pennywise (Tim Curry) begins in 1960 and spans until 1990. Featured are a group of six young men and one young woman who call themselves "the lucky seven" and are the unfortunate targets of Pennywise from pre-adolescence into their mid-forties. The lucky seven emerge physically intact but emotionally scathed after their first battle with Pennywise -- who is a self-labeled "eater of worlds...and children." When Pennywise returns 30 years later, the seven are forced to remember their terrifying past and faced with the prospect of destroying him once and for all. ~ Tracie Cooper, Rovi

    Cast & Crew


    • John Ritter
      John Ritter - Ben Hanscom
    • Richard Thomas
      Richard Thomas - Bill Denborough
    • Annette O'Toole
      Annette O'Toole - Beverly Marsh
    • Tim Curry
      Tim Curry - Pennywise
    • Harry Anderson
      Harry Anderson - Richie Tozier



    Customer rating

    Rating 4.5 out of 5 stars with 973 reviews

    95%
    would recommend to a friend
    • Rating: 3 out of 5 stars

      They all float..... in HD!

      Posted
      JakeInLivnColor
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      Stephen King is most definitely one of the most prolific writers for the past 40 years or so, with his oeuvre mainly in horror, but he has delved into a few different genres but his work within horror is what made him famous. The Dark Tower series, Carrie, The Shining and many more, most of which has translated to the screen, big or small, with varying degrees of success. One of his most notable, It, made the transition to our TV screens in 1990 as a mini-series, to big ratings and a long-lasting following that still has fans old and new still watching. Does It float, or does it get relegated to movie shelf purgatory? (Then) Modern day Derry, Maine, a child is playing out in the yard while her mother is hanging laundry, and all seems well. The mother goes inside to grab a laundry basket, and the girl is murdered by a clown called Pennywise, the true personification of evil. It has returned, and with it, the memories that Mike Hanlon (Tim Reid) has of his childhood with 6 of his closest friends: Richie (Harry Andeerson), Eddie (Dennis Christopher), Stan (Richard Mazur), Bev (Annette O'Toole), Ben (John Ritter) and Bill (Richard Thomas), who all banded together in the 1960s, as children, to defeat It. Of course they made a pact to return if It comes back, and kill it once and for all. Will they defeat It, or will they all float in the sewers? I never saw it originally broadcast, since I was only 2 at the time, and I barely saw snippets as a young teen (All I remember was the opening where Bill's brother Georgie met his maker, and nothing else), but I managed to watch the series as an adult and maybe that was a mistake, seeing how this is not really scary at all. In fact, I have failed to ever be scared by anything King has written in novel or film form. Its not for the lack of trying, as I have watched a lot of his film adaptations and have mostly found some caricatures instead of characters, laughs instead of scares, and the revolving door of his go-to setups of Indian burial mounds, religion and everything only happening in Maine. All with no avail. Despite it all, at least this is probably the best mini-series from King, but that's not saying much since the others mostly stink out loud. The cast is very talented, with the 7 main adult actors doing well with what they have, but the kid actors portraying the characters are even better, with a great camaraderie amongst the group that makes a compelling watch. Tim Curry, as Pennywise, steals every scene he has, delivering a truly Curry performance of menace, theatrics and ham all blending to a memorable evil villain. The rest of the cast are two dimensional characters, poorly written, arcs cut short or disappearing entirely and the secondary villains (i.e. Henry Bowers, Bev's abusive boyfriend) laughably over the top. Speaking of the writing, the script (Credited to director Tommy Lee Wallace and Lawrence D. Cohen) has an uneven flow. I know there are flashbacks that have to happen, but every 2 minutes causes a jerkiness I cannot get past. Plot lines from the original prose are gone, motivations are unclear or non-existant, and possibly one of the poorest endings I have ever witnessed. I know they had to cut out a lot of violence, sexuality and racism from the adaptation, but to gut the film of any bite is not the way to do it. Wallace's direction can be effective, but the script is just a huge pothole that he cannot avoid. The music, sound and sets are done well, but the special effects are laughably bad, even for 1990 effects, very poor. All in all, It is an overly long series, that has some great actors doing their best, but with underwritten characters (stemming from the original novel and the neutering of this adaptation), under-cooked script , terrible effects and an ending that Frank Capra would light on fire, this is entertaining in spurts, but is mostly staring into the Deadlights and being rendered motionless (and bored). Moving on to the A/V, having seen some of the reairings on TV in the past (Clips rather) and the flipper DVD from years prior, I've gotta say this is the film has ever looked, but still not the greatest it could look. The OAR of 1.33 is used here (The DVD is actually 1.85, which caused a few issues with the reformatting of the ratio) looks decent, with colors being the highlight here. The green of the trees and the sewers, the deep red blood, the pasty white of Pennywise, all look rather well and accurately represented here. Grain is here and is well-resolved in bright lights, but can get buzzy in dark scenes (Spikes the most during the optical effects), but at least it wasn't scrubbed away with malicious use of DNR. Detail is also fairly detailed, with facial closeups being the most detailed, but all in all, very decent, but could use a remaster. The audio is also pretty good, with the 2.0 DTS-HD track delivering the dialogue, music and effects rather well, but not an earth shatteringly loud track, just an accurate representation of the material. Extras are just a carryover from the DVD, which is the commentary with the director and cast. I would have loved a making-of documentary, interviews or a retrospective with the cast and crew. Oh well, maybe the new movie will introduce a better disc. Overall, the mini-series is just okay, and the disc being pretty decent but this is pretty much a one-and-done for me.

      No, I would not recommend this to a friend

    • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

      They ALL Float Down Here!

      Posted
      Pennywise

      Stephen King's It is one of the better adaptations of a King novel. The film is a two-part miniseries that aired in 1990. The film tells the tale of seven brave kids called the Losers who fight back against a menace simply known as IT that is terrorizing their town of Derry. Thirty years later, the evil resurfaces and the Losers must return, now adults, to do battle with IT once more. I really liked this film. The first half is fantastic, but the second half is a little lacking. Tim Curry plays Pennywise, IT's favorite form, and is by far the best performance of the lot. Everyone else gives mediocre performances. The ending of the film is horrible. The special effects in the ending are awful, but it's a made-for-TV movie, so you can't really complain. This specific disc holds a good movie, but it is a bad presentation. The film comes in a cardboard snap case and there is a flipper disc inside. The flipper disc has part one on one side and part two on the other. However, the disc doesn't say which side is which. That is, understandably, annoying. Overall, it's worth getting just to see one of the creepiest clown performances ever.

      I would recommend this to a friend

    • Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

      Tv Movie with a lot of Good Qualities

      Posted
      lgarcia08
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      The movie was made in 1990 (keep in mind for TV, not theaters). So no big budget, and lots of censorship red tape. However, the movie gives us the genius of Stephen King's horror story mixed with the feel of a Hitchcock thriller. It doesn't have the "in your face gore" as most movies nowadays. Which, if you're like me, makes it better because you can allow yourself to picture those moments however you want. (Sometimes that can even be scarier than what Hollywood gives us) The film's gold star of course belongs to Tim Curry. He is able to give Pennywise several different "faces." He can be fun and jovial as he lures his young prey closer. BUT he can also be truly, and utterly terrifying. Mixing in a dark, and twisted comedy as he drives the Derry 7 to their breaking points. However, the performances of all the children is manages to rival that of Curry's, and deserves ample recognition. Yes, you will have cheesy acting with your lo-tech special effects. Yes, this adaptation is no where near what is in the novel(blame the censors). However, this was good enough to give people nightmares, and an everlasting paranoia about clowns, back when it was first aired. For the blood, and violence, that this films lacks; it gives voices and faces to the characters you will be picturing in your dreams as you expand upon the scenes yourself.

      I would recommend this to a friend

    • Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

      Pennywise IS Tim Curry and that's "It"!

      Posted
      LuvDisneyatTimes
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      I had a privilege once. My friend was a manager at the local Blockbuster and he would give me the key to the back room every week and let me 'borrow' all the movies to be released I thought I could handle. In exchange, I would review them so he knew what to commend and why as if he, himself, had watched them. It was a wonderful arrangement. When reviewing a film, I ask myself whether - in a few years - if this film were to be remade would it beat this one and if not, why not? First, this a TV Mini-Series, not a motion picture. Perhaps, if was envisioned as a motion picture, certain constant inferior elements wouldn't have reminded us it was 'just TV'. The kid actors did a better job than the adults - except for Richard Thomas who seemed to outshine his co-stars on the adult side. Jonathan Brandis was excellent. Absolutely. He brought exactly what was needed for the part of Bill. I actually believed he may have stuttered at one time in his life. I wish he was still around. He would be an actor I would look forward to seeing. Adam Faraizl was also awesome as Eddie. Who knew the weak kid with psychosomatic asthma could stand up to the evil clown Pennywise so convincingly? Pennywise scared the s**t out of me. Tim Curry was so good in his role that the thought of replacing him in a newer version of this story in a film would frighten any actor - and rightfully so. He was SO good, some guys named their band after his character. Biggest failure? The monster at the end. A spider? Really? This is why the book is ALWAYS better. Key performances by Curry, Brandis and others held this one together to make it something to own for me, in spite of "It"s flaws.

      I would recommend this to a friend

    • Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

      A Blast from the Past

      Posted
      thrall
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      By now, everyone who was going see the 2017 model IT has seen it, but it surprises me that many viewers didn't know there was a 1990 TV (!) version of this shocker. This Bluray presents that teleview of this King classic in grand style. Originally spread over two nights with an all star cast, this version just ROCKS! While (naturally) not as graphic as the latest version, this one is actually even creepier, as much is left to your imagination..............the true test of great film making. Further, I find the child casting stronger in this version, along with the "now and then" narrative more interesting. Granted, the tv version had more time to delve into that storyline, and it's time well spent. Curious, but note this telefilm was released 27 years prior to the new theatrical one......................! I love both versions of IT, and would highly recommend this disc to both new and older fans of this shocker.

      I would recommend this to a friend

    • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

      A surprisingly good movie that holds up well today

      Posted
      TTC817
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      Originally airing over the course of two nights in 1990, this was the first adaptation of Stephen King's terrifying tale of Pennywise the Clown, and the "Losers Club" that must do battle with him. For an older movie that was made for TV, it is still surprisingly edgy and scary. Admittedly, some elements have not aged well, namely anything pertaining to the low budget special effects, but it remains effective for the most part despite an overlong run time. The disc has solid picture and sound; there are a few scenes that look rough, but it looks far better than a 1990 TV movie has any right to. The 2017 film was better because of its R rating and decision to split the "kid" and "adult" halves into two separate movies (with Part 2 of that due out in 2019) but this one is solid for what it is. I can still give it a firm recommendation.

      I would recommend this to a friend

    • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

      IT's from the 90's

      Posted
      BoxSet
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      Having missed IT when the miniseries first aired, I was delighted to see it restored on Blu-ray. The power of the story lies in the underdog kids who band together in a Goonies-style quest to defend themselves from the bogeyman Clown haunting their town. Our sympathy for these characters carries over to their adult lives when they have to band together 30 years later, restore their relationships, and finally defeat Pennywise. Yes, the effects are a bit dated, and the Clown is played with some camp by Tim Curry. But he is nonetheless a frightening caricature of bad dreams for children, and the performances of the actors along with solid direction make this horror tale work. The bond the main characters share and their true love and affection for each other is the true strength of this version. Recommended if you want a more heartfelt, though no less tragic telling of Stephen King's IT.

      I would recommend this to a friend

    • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

      This movie is why im petrified of Clowns

      Posted
      geminidreamatl30
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      been a stephen king fan (he's my favorite writer) since 1993. I was only 10 when this aired on TV in 1990 and i was told not to watch it as it was scary so i snuck watched it and i had nightmares for weeks. it was very scary and disturbing in some parts. i became petrified of clowns (tim curry played a scary murderous clown/alien creature who deserved an emmy named Pennywise). its a decent adaptation of the book but did leave out a lot of graphic details and moments. they were remaking IT into 2 parts theatricially so hopefully they will be more faithful. the casting was perfect for each roll. the film jumps between the 60s and the 90s with the 60s being the losers club meeting and fighting pennywise the first time. 90s being them as adults going back to fight him again as he has started killing again. i do not know why i bought this since im scared of any sort of clown but prob cause its a good movie and i love stephen king lol.

      I would recommend this to a friend



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