Movie Name: It!
Studio: Gold Star Films, Ltd.
Release Date(s): November 15, 1967
MPAA Rating: Not Rated
A fire at a warehouse leaves only a statue in the rubble, and Arthur Primm (Roddy McDowall) realizes that there is something special about the statue. The statue is the golem of legend and the legend tells that he who wields the golem has immense power. Arthur takes control of the golem to do his bidding, but Arthur himself is unbalance…and now the golem has been reawakened and cannot be stopped!
Directed by Herbert J. Leder, It! is a British horror film. The movie was initially released in the United States with the film The Frozen Dead.
I had a movie book growing up which featured a big picture of It!, and an image of the golem carrying an unconscious Ellen (Jill Haworth). The picture was rather creepy and I always wanted to see the movie.
The story for It! has a strange flow. The movie has very slow pacing and is a rather traditional horror movie for the first two thirds. The movie shows the golem come to live and kill. The last part of the movie has a bizarre twist involving the military and nuclear weapons. It isn’t exactly where you’d expect it which is both refreshing, but also a bit anticlimactic.
The movie mostly revolves around Roddy McDowall who plays a very Norman Bates type character. He’s already damaged when the movie starts so you can’t see it as a corruption tale. It seems like the movie would be better served as a story showing how power corrupts, but at least the movie provides something different.
The director wanted a Hammer film look for the movie and he succeeded. If you saw It! and didn’t know it wasn’t Hammer, you’d probably think it was. It has a certain class to the production that Hammer always took and despite other films getting darker and gorier, Hammer often went for classic gothic horror, and It! follows that path.
It! isn’t a great movie, but it also isn’t a bad film. I think the golem is an interesting subject for horror since it was meant to be the savior of people. It goes to the idea of that the soul is the heart of good and evil and whoever’s soul is controlling the golem will determine the golem’s path. The movie has a very classic horror ending with the monster available to return, but unfortunately, It! never came back.