Written/Directed/Produced by Ti West
Distributed by A24
What it’s about
A group of twenty somethings set off to film an adult film in rural Texas, renting a location from elderly couple – Howard and Pearl. With dreams of stardom and celebrity, the crew of six begin filming their movie only to learn that something is terribly off about Howard and Pearl.
Mia Goth (Suspiria 2017) plays a double role in the film. Maxine Minx, the porn actress AND Pearl, the old lady. This was the best part about the movie- her duality. It wasn’t until after the film that I realized it was the same actress portraying both characters. The team of six are determined to make the most artful and successful pornography film ever, truning them all into massive stars. With RJ at the camera helm with his artsy direction, girlfriend Lorraine (Jenna Ortega- Insidious: Chapter 2) on audio, Wayne (Martin Henderson- Little Fish 2005) the hot shot producer and the stars; Jackson, a former marine, Bobby Lynn,a southern seductress and Maxine.
What I Thought
If Boogie Nights met Texas Chainsaw Massacre. Only instead of Leatherface we have a creepy, horny old lady.
Although a decent slasher, it wasn’t perfect for me.
I DID like the practical effects, the gore scenes and the sheer amount of blood used in this movie.
I did NOT enjoy the pacing, waiting until almost two thirds in before it really picked up. I also found a lack of character development, so I had a hard time feeling any real empathy or connecting to any of the characters, other than Pearl.
You feel bad for Pearl. A former dancer and beauty queen, she’s now stuck inside her senior body, not able to do the things she once loved. Like, making love to her husband for example. Howard has a bad heart so their physical connection has dwindled making her feel extremely lonely and empty.
Seeing the young crowd of “filmmakers”, creepily watching them perform their scenes through windows, awakens a visceral spark inside, turning this meek old lady into one brutal killer.
I loved all the gore once it started rolling. Some fantastic makeup and special effects. LOTS OF BLOOD. The soundtrack was also pretty great considering the film takes place in 1979.
The only outstanding performance in this movie for me, was Mia Goth.
I think it could have been better. If only we just cut out one or two of the many sex scenes to explore the characters more. Although it was refreshing to see a brand new Slasher flick that WASN’T a remake, it didn’t deliver for me like I had hoped. It wasn’t as tense as I expected, and I didn’t love it. A decent watch but don’t go in with high expectations.
Where to find it
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