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Trivia reports that "Pearl" was shot in great secrecy and at the same time as X, the first film, with light and dark (at least for me) of the Ti West trilogy. If this is how things turned out, it must be said that the greatest efforts, director, writers and performers, put it here, in "Pearl," without any doubt.
Everything revolves around the outstanding performance of Mia Goth who is also a screenwriter, producer and everything revolves around her character who gives the film its title and whom we will see old in X (I will add no more). In short, the actress is the star of a work that on the one hand refers to the sunshine of those Technicolor films that told of the dreams and hopes of the early years of the last century and on the other takes us into a dark and ruthless story. So precise and intense that West's attempts to give us severed heads and battered bodies prove futile, because we already experience the discomfort and anxiety abundantly with the protagonist, without needing the horror imagery.
Pearl is a young woman living on a remote Texas farm with her mother, a German immigrant, and her father who lives in a near-neurovegetative state.
Howard her husband is somewhere in Europe serving as a soldier in the great war that is ending. And as the Spanish pandemic rages, Pearl dreams of escaping, of being an actress and becoming a famous dancer in one of those cheerful, musical, majestically choreographed films of the time. So obsessed and convinced is she that she rehearses her dance numbers in front of a cow and a goat without forgetting to confide in the alligator in the pond near her home to which she feeds.
And it is in this context that Pearl's anxieties explode, closed off from her mother, ultra-conservative and abandoned by her husband and above all forced into a mediocre life. An audition to enter a play gives her hope, as does a bohemian projectionist she meets in town.
Innocent and naive, but at the same time ruthless and out of control, the woman fights against those who oppose her, those who abandon her, and those who do not believe in her.

Less surprising, however, is the fact that the film got an under-18 ban. It smacks more of a clever marketing move than anything else. As has always been the case.