X (2022, Ti West)

I keep getting Eli Roth (Cabin Fever) and Ti West (Cabin Fever 2) confused. I suppose the closest I’ve ever come to liking a Ti West movie was House of the Devil, and if I’d looked him up first I might’ve skipped this one, but a well-regarded horror about a bootstrap porno movie filming on the property of elderly murderers was too good to pass up. The camerawork is on point, and when changing scenes the editing will flip back and forth between the old and the new, a certain sense of the avant-garde like they’re doin’ in France.

Mia Goth is our entry point character, and also plays the old woman, loves to play in movies where the lead actress plays multiple roles from different generations. Cameraman Owen Campbell (paranoid main kid from Super Dark Times) dies first, stabbed in the throat for refusing the old woman’s advances, and the cowboy in charge (Martin Henderson of The Ring Remake) comes next, unwisely putting his eye up to a suspicious hole. The old man just shoots porn actor Kid Cudi (recently great in Bill & Ted Face the Music) in the swamp, actress Brittany Snow (Prom Night Remake) is pushed into the gator pond, and soundgirl Jenna Ortega (Scream Reboot) is shot escaping. The movie-in-the-movie is called Farmer’s Daughter, and they sing “Landslide” after shooting, it’s all very Fleetwood-inspired. Oh no, they’re making a prequel.

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