Now now, A24’s “X” has nothing to do with the “X-Men” series. It’s actually named after the MPAA’s over 17 and up before NC-17 became its successor. Set in 1979, a film crew from Texas rent an elderly couple’s place to shoot a pornographic film . Suddenly, all heck breaks lose.
X was officially released in Spring, 2022. (same month Matt Reeves’ The Batman came out) It received positive reviews from critics and movie goers alike. A prequel titled, “Pearl” is out right now. A sequel is currently in development with Mia Goth reprising her role as Maxine. I’ve yet to see Pearl. By the way, it’s officially Halloween Month 2022. So I’ll be reviewing a few horror films.
This review contains no SPOILERS. I’m giving many of you a chance to see this sleeper hit. I’ve yet to see Pearl. Is X an unexpected modern classic or a dud? Let’s find out shall we?
Promote & Demote Aspects
Promote: Mia Goth, Brittany Snow, Kid Cudi & Jenna Ortega all did a decent job for their respective performances.
Ti West (The House of the Devil, The Sacrament, In a Valley of Violence) did an awesome job directing. He also wrote the script double-checking every single plot point remains intact.
Sam Levinson (Euphoria) serves as an executive producer.
Death Scenes are very savage. If you have a weak stomach, be prepared.
The actress who played Pearl is a familiar face. If you’ve already seen X, you probably know who she is.
Scare Factor never overindulges on Jump Scares. They’re used sparingly. The real terror is the elderly couple that made my skin tingle. Subverts certain horror tropes like splitting up until the killer annihilates one character after another.
Pacing didn’t feel slow or fast. Felt pretty stable. Not boring from start to finish. Also worth a rewatch for subtle clues.
Cinematography perfectly captures camera instability making it look like you’re with the film crew.
Chemistry between Maxine and her film crew serves as the main highlight.
If you recall in a trailer for X, Blue Oyster Cult’s “Don’t Fear the Reaper” is played in one significant scene. Also pays homage to “Halloween.” The original John Carpenter masterpiece, not Rob Zombie’s mishap.
X’s a throwback to horror films from the 70s. Most notably, “The Texas Chainsaw Massacre.” It also takes cues from “Boogie Nights.” A cross between Leatherface & Dirk Diggler.
The film is primarily set in Texas. It gets an Extra Point. I’m a Texan myself.
I can’t tell you how it ends. You’re gonna have to see for yourself.
A Post-Credits Scene sets up the recently released prequel, Pearl.
Demote: I couldn’t find nothing wrong. I’m giving the Cast & Crew an Extra Point for making a flawless film as possible.
The Final Verdict: A, FOR APEX!
X is an unexpected modern classic that managed to keep me on the edge of my seat. It’s one of my favorite films of 2022 along with “Top Gun: Maverick,” “The Batman,” “Bullet Train,” “Dragon Ball Super: Super Hero,” “Elvis,” “Beavis and Butthead Do the Universe” & “Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness.” X is a must see for anyone who’s a pure horror movie fan. Definitely worth your spare time.