Fright Fortnight: X revisits the classic 70s slasher

4 mins read

You might picture cheesy, clichéd horror with cheap jump scares when you think of slashers, but with X, you couldn’t be more wrong.

In X, A group of young adult filmmakers set out to shoot an adult movie in a remote Texas ranch in 1979.

When the creepy elderly couple they are renting an outhouse from learn what is going on, things spiral out of control.

X has a fantastic cast with actors such as Mia Goth, Martin Henderson, Brittany Snow, Jenna Ortega, and rapper Kid Cudi who play the film crew.

Mia Goth is mesmerising in this movie as she is able to make overalls and bright blue eyeshadow look good. Jenna Ortega, also does a great job in this movie.

X touches on topics such as sexuality, religion, and female liberation. The female characters are empowered by their choice of work rather than being condemned for it.

It’s refreshing to see these female characters on the big screen express their desires, despite what people may think.

It frequently has a preacher on television who openly condemns all sexual behaviour while using Christianity to justify his opinions.

This echoes throughout the entire movie and stands in stark contrast with what is happening at the bottom of their yard.

The film crew openly speak about these topics which helps the audience to feel a sense of connection with them. The characters feel relatable as they are real people with wants and dreams.

(L-R) Owen Campbells, Brittany Snow, Kid Cudi and Jenny Ortega in X. Image Credit: A24

It is unusual from a standard slasher when the viewer usually just waits to see who is murdered first. The audience actually grows to like these characters and understand them.

The crew know what they want in life and how to get it.  Maxine, Mia Goth’s character repeatedly says “I will not accept a life I do not deserve”. This is a mantra that I’m sure we all could live by.

The movie has a lot of eerie and terrifying scenes. These emulate the style of 1970s slasher movies where characters typically die in bizarre and gory ways.

The kills in this movie are very violent and unexpected with fantastic special effects making your stomach turn a little.

Director Ti West will make you feel safe watching scenes and then shatter this feeling with jumpscares, helping to separate X from the cheesiness of the 1970s

The only downside to this movie is that it can feel quite slow in the beginning which may bother some viewers. The movie has a run time of 1 hour 45 minutes, so may leave some questions unanswered.

The movie is to have a sequel called Maxine, so hopefully, some aspects of the movie are answered in this.

Camp, sleazy, and thought-provoking, I would highly recommend this film to anyone who would love to see a modernised version of the classic horror genre.

X is now available to stream on Amazon Prime Video.

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Music Editor of Brig Newspaper. 3rd year film, media and journalism student.

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