Book vs Movie | It by Stephen King


It’s the age old question asked by any film or print fan around the planet. I know how many times I’ve been asked, ‘why would you read that, they made a movie?’ Obviously it’s because the book is always better.

But is it really?


Goodreads Synopsis:

To the children, the town was their whole world. To the adults, knowing better, Derry, Maine was just their home town: familiar, well-ordered for the most part. A good place to live.
It was the children who saw – and felt – what made Derry so horribly different. In the storm drains, in the sewers, IT lurked, taking on the shape of every nightmare, each one’s deepest dread. Sometimes IT reached up, seizing, tearing, killing . . .
The adults, knowing better, knew nothing.
Time passed and the children grew up, moved away. The horror of IT was deep-buried, wrapped in forgetfulness. Until they were called back, once more to confront IT as IT stirred and coiled in the sullen depths of their memories, reaching up again to make their past nightmares a terrible present reality.

My Thoughts

I saw the original IT miniseries for the first time only a couple years ago.  I know that it scared a lot of people, but it didn’t scare me at all, not even a little bit.  I wasn’t impressed with Tim Curry as Pennywise.  It was just too goofy for me to believe that he was terrifying.  I thought the kids did a decent job of capturing the friendships, but mostly I wasn’t impressed.

I did love the book, which I also read in the last few years.  Though it wasn’t as long as others, the moment I put the book down I’ve wished that the rumors of a remake were true and I’d see a really great adaptation, because the book begged for a really scary movie.  The creators behind the new IT movie thankfully got it all right!

All of the kids were incredible.  They nailed the connection and friendships, which were vital for a movie.  Their friendship was the heart of the story.  All of the kids were awesome, but Finn Wolfhard as Richie Tozier really stole the show!  Richie was already one of the most vibrant characters in the book, and Finn seemed to get who he was and really brought him to life.  Beep beep, Richie!

Bill Skarsgård’s interpretation of Pennywise was terrifying!  Of all the fears that IT manifested, none of them were as scary as Pennywise.  He was the perfect casting choice, because he turned Pennywise into a true nightmare.


Comparing the movie to Stephen King’s novel, I’d say both of them were strong in different ways.  Obviously the book is able to dive deeper into each character, and the history of Derry.  As good as these actors were, I’d still choose to read about them rather than watch, only because in a book I just get more.  However, the scenes that I didn’t like in the novel (like something that happened in the end) weren’t included, which made the movie more enjoyable.  Plus, the reality of Pennywise was so much more in the movie… It’s a hard choice.


I want to give this to the movie, that’s my initial reaction, but every time I try to type it I can’t.  The book is too epic for it to lose to a 2 hour movie.  Instead, I’ll call it a tie.  The book was the basis for the wonderful movie, and the movie couldn’t have been as good as it was without it.  However, many movies fail no matter how good the book is, so that makes the movie special too.  Then, where the book was weak, the movie was strong, and vice versa.  They were equally worth watching/reading, I say.

Now, go read the book, and then go watch the movie!  Birdie says so!

We all float down here, and you will, too - Imgur

About Birdie

Don’t look for her in any bar, club, crazy raging party, or anywhere there may be a large gathering of strangers. She’s more likely to be found tucked into the corner of the couch watching one of her favorite shows, or preferably under a comforter with her current novel.

55 Responses

  1. First off, Tim Curry was the original Pennywise!?!?!?! I need to watch this, I’m a huge Tim Curry fan!
    I just saw the movie this past week (and will probably go to see it again next week because I LOVED it that much). I am in the same boat as you where I loved the book and we had so much in the book, but what I really loved about the movie (as I didn’t know they were making two parts until I pretty much went to see IT and Stephen King tweeted about it) was that they kept the kids and the adults separate. I found they bounced around too much in the book, and it hurt my head. The separation was perfect to me; and wasn’t it amazing how they developed these kids, I loved them, and I felt sad for Billy like, I was in the theatre and I was like to my friend, ‘how am I feeling sad right now?’. I even told my co-worker, who I may go with to see it again, that I could watch the movie all day, it was just the right amount of terrifying for me. It was terrifyingly wonder! 🙂


      1. I completely agree! He was the perfect level of scary, like I hated looking at him, but I wanted to stare at him the whole time. Like does that even make sense?!
        Ugh right?! I felt such a connection between the brothers; I truely felt their connection, and I felt sad for Billy! And yes, we got that one scene with his father yelling at him, and that was it. We got more of Reggie’s mom than anything else! (she drove me up the wall, which just means she was a really good character!)

        I still want to watch the mini series, I’m kinda glad to hear they kept it separate. There is something to be said about kid friendships! 🙂


  2. I just re-watched the original last night and was still not impressed. We watched the new one this past weekend and it was good, but not scary. I have not read the book yet, but when I heard about an orgy scene my interest was piqued even less, lol. Is there an orgy scene in the book?


      1. Lol. My mom almost bruised my hand because she was squeezing it so much!! It takes a lot to scare me though.

        I feel like that scene would be so awkward to read, lol. I am glad it was left out of the movies too!

        That is a good point. I am usually fine with violence in books and movies, but don’t enjoy graphic sex scenes. It’s always been a preference, but I can see why that would be a good discussion and an interesting thing to point out!


      2. I definitely don’t enjoy seeing graphic sex scenes. Sex is something I think should stay personal still, ya know. I am okay with some violence. We actually stopped watching The Walking Dead because of the amount of violence Negan brought to the show.


  3. I’ve been interested in reading the book, but have been daunted by the sheer size 😂 I like to joke that it’s bigger than the Bible. My mom used to own it, but had to get rid of it when we moved, she as only able to keep a few Stephen King books, sadly.
    I kind of want to see this, but sort of don’t. I’m a wuss when it comes to watching horror. Reading horror is okay, but watching it is another thing altogether.


  4. I thought they did a great job with the movie, although I wish I’d known ahead of time that there’s a chapter 2 planned. Interesting choice they made to split the movie so that we only see the kids in this one. I thought the kids were excellent, and Pennywise was terrifying. I read the book so many years ago that it really isn’t fresh at all in my mind, but I loved it at the time (although I remember being dissatisfied with the ending).


      1. I’m usually dissatisfied with his endings as well. It’s weird, because I’m absolutely a fan, but I end up feeling that he has a hard time sticking the landing in a lot of his books. Still love reading them though!


  5. owlsreads

    Oh my god, as someone who watched IT as a smol child, Pennywise was the scariest!!!! beings!!!!! out there!!!!!! I just watched the remake last night, and I have to agree with you: Bill is so so so so much worse 😱 I still haven’t read the book, but now I kind of want to 😛


  6. The book is brilliant, I reviewed it on my blog I haven’t seen the latest film but what annoys me is How much they change the ending, for e.g. Tommyknockers they completely turn the end on its head.


  7. Such a great movie! 😀 I agree, the cast really was fantastic. Haha, and the young actor playing Richie definitely did steal the show. 😛 I feel like every time he opened his mouth I was laughing. He was really good in Stranger Things, and seeing him in It only cemented that since it really showed his acting range. 🙂
    I already wanna watch the movie again. lol I need to read the book, too, though. I almost bought it the other day but ended up passing at the last second. One day, though! 😀
    Awesome post. It’s always fun comparing movies/shows with their original source material and seeing how they vary.


  8. Of course the book is far interesting than the movie, however the director of the movie recently mentioned that the sequel of the IT movie (part 2) will dig deeper into the book. But still either the book or the movie, it still follows a normal horror movie concept we all know- a scary clown in a scary old house, or old cabin, or scary castle…


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