Dying to show you a good time.
X is a 2022 slasher film directed by Ti West, written by Ti West, produced by Little Lamb and Mad Solar Productions, and distributed by A24. The film stars Mia Goth and Jenna Ortega. This is the first film in the X franchise. It was followed by a prequel called Pearl and will be followed by a sequel called MaXXXine.
"Shhh. It'll be our little secret." - Pearl
When a group of young filmmakers sets out to shoot a pornographic movie in the slums of Texas, they arrive at the farmhouse of an elderly couple. While all seems well at first, things start to get very bloody when the elderly couple finds out just exactly what the filmmakers are doing.
My Favorite Thing About X
X is a different kind of movie.
My favorite thing is probably the direction. Ti West brings a slick, stylized horror movie that feels like its in the vein of a Texas Chainsaw Massacre or House of 1000 Corpses. It has that grimy, nasty feel to it while also having some beautiful cinematography. West knows how to set up perfectly normal shots that make you feel uneasy. He also knows how to set up shots that have super creepy things in the background. His direction gave you this looming sense of dread in the first half of the movie and then outright terror in the second half.
My Least Favorite Thing About X
The Rotten Tomatoes audience consensus for X reads "X isn't every horror fan's idea of a good time, but it's often unique and never boring."
While I appreciate the filmmaking and I understand what they were going for in this movie...I have never been more disgusted by a film in my entire life. I mean, some of the stuff I saw in this movie was scarring. And not in a good way. It's scary, but not in a fun way. I was so insanely uncomfortable during the back half of this movie. It was so...uggghhhh. It made me want to vomit. It goes to places that I never thought a film would go. This movie is rated R. It absolutely, one hundred percent, no questions asked, should be rated NC-17. Traumatizing is the only way I can describe it.
Why I Kind of Hated X
The reason I said "kind of hated" is because I enjoyed the first half of this movie. However, as soon as the carnage...and other stuff...kicks in, I was watching this movie through my fingers. There is one scene where I genuinely put my hands in front of my computer to block out images because I was so disturbed by what I was watching. Once again, I understand that this movie is going for certain things, but I was not at all prepared for what this film was going to bring. Oy. It is nuts. And not in a good way.
Final Thoughts and Score
While X may be a well made movie, it is the only film in the world that has successfully made me nauseous and made me want to turn it off because I was so uncomfortable. The MPAA needs to slap this movie across the face with an NC-17 rating. Please.
I will go Sour here. I can't go Moldy because it's well made. Age range is 18+.
SWEET N' SOUR SCALE
Sweet (Great) Savory (Good)
Fun Factor: 1/10
Directed by Ti West
Rated R (should be NC-17) for strong bloody violence, frightening images, strong sexual content, nudity, drug use, language, thematic elements
Released on March 18, 2022
1 hour and 46 minutes
Mia Goth as Maxine Minx / Pearl
Jenna Ortega as Lorraine
Brittany Snow as Bobby-Lynne
Kid Cudi as Jackson Hole
Martin Henderson as Wayne Gilroy
Owen Campbell as RJ Nichols
Stephen Ure as Howard
James Gaylyn as Sheriff Dentler