1 July 2006 | BaronBl00d
Momma's Boy Gets a Piece of the Rock
Highly implausible story about a museum curator that soon discovers the secret scroll that brings to life a real Golem to do his bidding. This part of the story is inventive yet not wholly convincing. The set designs, the acting, the direction, and the Golem itself all look and feel authentic at times, yet the script has so many problems that none of these things are able to gel like they should. Roddy McDowell plays prissy, circumspect, socially awkward Arthur Primm very well. I almost even believed he was interested in sexy, sultry, blonde Jill Haworth! His performance helps give the film a bit of credibility, but the film, as early as the first scene where we see Primm alone, tries to turn a golem story into a golem and Psycho story as Primm talks to his mother and then we see her dead skeleton dressed in dressing gown in a chair after having heard her talk with her son. Director Herbert Leder isn't quite sure what he is trying to do here in this film. Wiithout the Psycho touches, It! might have been a pretty entertaining film if a little more development had gone into Primm. I know Leder was trying to show us WHY Primm was the way he was, but, c'mon, pulling a Norman Bates on an English museum curator that otherwise seemed to live and function pretty normally wasn't the way to go about IT. It's possible but, as I said, highly implausible. It also takes away from the story of the Golem. Why was it in the museum? Why did it kill first and secondly when it had NOT been invoked by the scroll? The explanation of the Golem myth was interesting and the character acting is very able all around with Aubrey Richards and Ernest Clark standing out as McDowell's superiors. While the first half of the film manages to create some slow-paced suspense, the second half quickly dissolves into one ridiculous scene after another - with an English country manor, the Golem, and nuclear weapons figuring into a climatic end. For a more complete introduction into Golem lore, see the German masterpiece Der Golem.