X (2022) Revisited – Horror Party Movies

The Horror Party Movies series shows how we party to the Ti West horror film X, starring Mia Goth, Brittany Snow, Jenna Ortega

With films such as The House of the Devil and The Innkeepers, Ti West showcases his talent for blending atmospheric dread, slow-burning tension, and meticulous attention to detail with retro aesthetics. West’s work often pays homage to the horror classics of the 1970s and 1980s, reflecting his deep appreciation for the genre’s history. His ability to craft compelling narratives and memorable characters has earned him a dedicated following among horror aficionados. This reputation set the stage for his ambitious project, the “X” trilogy, beginning with the critically acclaimed film X to the fantastical technicolor nightmare of Pearl and ending with this summer’s Maxxxine. The first entry is a vibrant and thrilling entry into West’s filmography, combining his signature tension-building with a more playful and exuberant tone. X is a fun and gripping homage to grindhouse cinema, delivering both scares and a nostalgic celebration of horror’s past.

I’m Mike Conway for JoBlo Horror, and today we are heading back to the 1970s to see if this 2022 film has that X-factor today on Horror Party Movies.

X follows burlesque owner Wayne, a man bursting with ambition and dreams of stardom who rounds up a group of young, energetic filmmakers to create a groundbreaking adult film called The Farmer’s Daughters. With his girlfriend, the aspiring actress Maxine, set to star, Wayne is certain they’ll all be famous in no time. They head to rent a guesthouse at a farm in rural Texas, which Wayne rented from the creepy old couple, Howard and Pearl. As soon as the cameras start rolling under the direction of the visionary and too-good-for-this-shit RJ, things take a bloody turn. As the night unfolds, the team realizes they’re in for more than just a money shot. Will they make it through the night’s spine-chilling surprises?

I think I already know what the ol’ party meter has to say about this one, but for shits and gigs, let’s slip it in. According to my scale, X is guaranteed a good time. Who doesn’t like a good dirty picture with friends?

As always, I’ll be making a drink to accompany the movie. So, let’s hop behind the bar and get right to it.







X Horror Party Movies


As with any game, there are some basic rules you can follow or modify.

For today’s game, take a drink when:

People get it on

The Alligator is shown

When Pearl dances

A classic song is heard

With any kill

If alcohol isn’t your bag, there are plenty of other things to choose from. Cannabis, if legal in your state, delta 8, 9, 10, or whatever the hell number they’re at now, caffeine, hot sauce, anything. Just know your tolerance. This is supposed to be fun; we don’t want to send you to the hospital. Basically, don’t be a dumbass.

So, who survives, and what will be left of them? Let’s step behind the adult-only curtain and find out.


The movie opens looking out onto a farm. The barn doors cleverly mask the frame to resemble a 4:3 aspect ratio that makes assholes like me annoyingly point this shit out to people I watch it with. There’s a little bit of murder on this farm and something wild in the basement. What’s in that basement? We’ll find out after this feature-length flashback. We then cut to 24 hours earlier. Our story kicks off with Wayne, a charismatic burlesque owner and part-time Matthew McConaughey impersonator, with plans to shake up the adult film industry. He’s not just dreaming—he’s doing it, dammit! Wayne assembles a vibrant crew of young filmmakers and aspiring stars to create an ambitious adult film, The Farmer’s Daughters. Leading the pack is his girlfriend, Maxine, an aspiring actress with her sights set on stardom and her nose in the booger sugar. Maxine is determined to make a name for herself, believing this film will be her golden ticket. Joining them are the confident and sassy Bobby-Lynne, her easygoing boyfriend Jackson, the idealistic and typical “I went to film school” RJ, and his cautious church mouse girlfriend Lorraine.

Wayne’s enthusiasm is contagious, and the crew sets off on their journey with high hopes. They’re excited about the project, believing it will catapult them to fame and fortune into the mainstream world of adult films. Wayne’s confidence in Maxine’s star power keeps everyone’s spirits high despite the underlying tensions among the group. RJ is particularly determined to bring a touch of artistry to the adult film genre, aiming to elevate it beyond mere exploitation.

The gang heads to a remote farmhouse in rural Texas, rented from the creepy yet seemingly harmless elderly couple, Howard and Pearl. Right off the bat, this place gives off major eerie vibes, especially with Howard’s welcoming Texas greeting. Howard and Pearl don’t know about the adult film being shot on their property, adding a layer of tension that builds as the crew begins their work.

The farmhouse is isolated, surrounded by vast fields, and the atmosphere is thick with foreboding. The interior is cluttered with old furniture and antiques, adding to the sense of unease. Howard and Pearl are strange, their interactions awkward and unsettling. Pearl, in particular, seems to have a strange fixation on the young crew, especially Maxine. Despite the creepy vibe, the crew presses on, determined to make their film.

Pearl, feeling old and envious of the youthful crew, especially Maxine, starts watching them from the shadows. Her longing for the days of her own youth and beauty turns her into a ticking time bomb. Pearl’s suppressed desires and frustrations bubble to the surface, manifesting in disturbing ways. She secretly watches the crew, her yearning gaze lingering on Maxine. This voyeuristic behavior escalates when Pearl makes an unsettling advance toward Maxine, who recoils in shock and rejection. This moment of rejection becomes the catalyst for the violent events that follow.

Pearl’s longing is deep; she sees in Maxine everything she used to be—young, beautiful, and full of potential. The rejection stings deeply, and it’s clear that Pearl’s emotions are spiraling out of control. Her fixation on Maxine becomes dangerous as envy and bitterness take hold. Howard, who initially appears as a frail and passive figure, is shown to be complicit in Pearl’s violent tendencies. Their twisted relationship and shared dark past come to light, adding depth to their characters and amplifying the horror. As night falls, Pearl’s behavior shifts from sleazily unsettling to outright dangerous and horny. And soon, the filmmakers’ dream of stardom quickly turns into a fight for survival.

Based on the opening, we all know that not too many people make it out alive. But before I get to the awesome kills in this flick, I want to talk for a minute about the show’s star, Mia Goth. As Maxine, she brings depth and intensity that really elevates the entire movie. The journey from an ambitious actress to a fierce survivor is a challenging arc, but Goth handles it with such finesse. It’s everything you could ask for and more in a final girl. But it’s not just her portrayal as Maxine to which I sing her praises. It’s also that of Pearl. Normally, I allow myself just enough information going into a movie. Just like when I first saw Tom Cruise in Tropic Thunder under all those prosthetics, I had absolutely no idea Goth was also Pearl until the credits rolled. She adopts a hunched posture, shuffling walk, and tremulous gestures that make Pearl appear vulnerable yet unsettling. This physical transformation is complemented by her vocal performance, where she uses a raspy, quavering voice that adds to Pearl’s believable, eerie presence. It’s really a masterclass in character acting and one that is truly heightened in the next chapter of the series.

Praises for Goth aside, let’s talk about the money shots of the film: The Kills.

I probably should mention this is SPOILER heavy, even though the opening of the film let you know it’s a bloodbath. First, let’s talk about RJ. After Bobby-Lynne serenades not only her peers, but also the audience, with a touching cover of Landslide, Jenna Ortega’s Lorraine speaks up and says she wants to be in the movie. Now, this is a no-go for RJ, but after some convincing from Wayne, he ends up filming his girlfriend have sex with a well-blessed Jackson. This devastates RJ, propelling him to leave the group and the picture. At this point on my first viewing, I had no idea where the story was heading. I was beginning to think RJ was going to completely loose his shit and start targeting the entire film crew, that is, until he comes across Pearl standing in his path. His attempt to abandon the shoot is cut short in the most brutal way possible. Pearl, feeling rejected and enraged, stops him in his tracks. Pearl’s sudden and savage attack is both shocking and gruesome the way she repeatedly stabs RJ in the neck until his head is completely off. It actually reminds me of a certain video that circulated the net in the early 2000s. If you know, you know. And what makes this scene elevated even more is the song “Don’t Fear the Reaper” coming from the stereo. Hands down, this is the best kill in the movie.

That’s not to downplay the rest of the kills. You have Wayne heading to the barn to get literally nailed and fulfilling his promise foreshadowed earlier that the film will make eyes pop out of their heads. You have Bobby-Lynne getting fed to the gator which was also cleverly foreshadowed earlier on the sign of the burlesque building. Jackson Hole gets an actual hole in his chest via shotgun blast. And Lorraine eventually meets her end by screaming her head off even though she has been mostly quiet the entire film. Every single kill in this movie rocks so fucking hard, and that’s due to not only the performances, but also because of the script.

At one point in the movie, RJ mentions that it’s possible to make a good dirty movie. And that’s exactly what director Ti West did here. He took the formula of a good old-fashioned dirty as hell slasher and elevated it by delivering well thought out characters, meticulous attention to detail, and perfect – pardon the pun – execution. Like I mentioned earlier, I had no idea where this was going to go other than the fact almost everyone dies. There was also another moment in the film, brought to us again by RJ, where he says you can’t change the story halfway through the movie. X proves the contrary. Yes, the killers are the old folks, but their reasoning behind the mayhem is something I have never seen before in all my horror watching years. Just brilliant.

X came out at the beginning of 2022 to rave reviews. It also had the surprise prequel Pearl released later that year, which was my favorite film of 2022. Even though I feel the latter is a better movie, X is something I feel is best enjoyed with a crowd who can laugh, cheer, and maybe even cringe together. If you haven’t seen them, definitely check them out, and then support horror even more by going to see Maxxxine. Until next time, have a good one.

A couple previous episodes of the Best Horror Party Movies series can be seen below. To see more, and to check out some of our other shows, head over to the JoBlo Horror Originals YouTube channel – and subscribe while you’re there!

Source: Arrow in the Head

About the Author

11 Articles Published

Mike Conway has been a film fanatic since the age of 4 ever since his dad, who didn't know any better, took him to see A Nightmare On Elm Street 4. When he's not introducing his own son to horror movies, Mike loves being with his family, listening to and playing metal, pinball, and cooking. After seeing Mallrats as a teen, he was inspired to write his first screenplay and hasn't stopped since. While he has made several short films, he hopes to soon get a feature under his belt. In addition to running the JoBlo Horror YouTube Channel, Mike writes, edits, and narrates for JoBlo Horror Originals. He resides in South Carolina with his wife, son, and four dogs where he's constantly vacuuming up dog hair.