Earlier this year, Ti West delivered one of the most violent and thrilling slasher movies of the decade, X. It paid homage to the exploitation films of the 1970s, the most notable of which was The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (1974).
The film starred Martin Henderson and Mia Goth amongst others, and audiences who were patient enough to watch the end credits were treated to a surprise trailer for Pearl, a secret prequel that had already been filmed.
Although X was set in Texas, Ti West shot it in New Zealand when most of the world was in lockdown, and although he was assumed to be simply making a new horror movie, he was in fact making two. He wrote the script for Pearl while shooting X, and secretly shot the entire film immediately after principal photography had wrapped.
The title of Pearl relates to the titular character (played by Mia Goth), who fixated on a group of young filmmaking friends in X and killed them one by one on her alligator-infested property. It was an effective and formulaic horror movie, which was met with both critical and audience praise. This new prequel will take viewers back to 1918 to explore Pearl’s back story and the reason for her insanity.
The official synopsis reads: “Trapped on her family’s isolated farm, Pearl must tend to her ailing father under the bitter and overbearing watch of her devout mother. Lusting for a glamorous life like she’s seen in the movies, Pearl’s ambitions, temptations and repressions all collide, in the stunning, technicolor-inspired origin story of X’s iconic villain.”
If the trailer is anything to go by, we look set for a fun and psychotic descent into madness, which not only has a charm that leaps off the screen, but also boasts a quirky assortment of characters with one very demented antagonist leading the way.