X and the Fear of Growing Old

There’s a phobia for everything. I knew there was a name for the fear of old people, too, so I googled it. Yep. It’s gerontophobia. Not to be confused with gerascophobia, which is the fear of growing older (and don’t we all have a little touch of that one?), gerontophobia is the literal fear or hatred of elderly people, the sense of revulsion engendered in a sufferer simply by looking at or being around old folks. If you suffer from gerontophobia, Ti West’s latest offering X is gonna press that button for you. Would it help to know that the two geriatric characters in the film are actually played by younger actors under heavy makeup and prosthetics? (SPOILER WARNING: Mia Goth does a fine job serving as both the film’s Survivor Girl and its senior citizen serial killer.) And it’s doubtful too many of the SJWs are gonna complain about “ageism” with that casting choice, either, considering what the old geezers actually *do* in the movie. (We’ll just say the portrayals are hardly flattering, and this has nothing to do with the characters’ advanced ages and everything to do with them being batshit crazy.)

One cannot justifiably accuse the filmmaker of exploitation, though. If the villains in X make the audience squirm, it’s never because West is making the statement that being old is itself taboo or “gross”. It’s much the opposite, really; West shows that old people are still people, with lead villain Pearl shown possessing the same thoughts, feelings, and desires of younger women. The depiction elicits empathy for her. Right up until she starts hacking and slashing all the nubile young bodies around her.

Categorized as darkness

By The Evil Cheezman

Purveyor of sacred truths and purloined letters; literary acrobat; spiritual godson of Edgar Allan Poe, P.T. Barnum, and Ed Wood; WAYNE MILLER is the head architect of EVIL CHEEZ PRODUCTIONS, serving up the finest in entertainment and edification for the stage, the page, and the twain screens, silver and computer. He is the axe-murderer who once met Andy Griffith.

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