Disclaimer: RLJ Entertainment has provided me with a copy of this film free of charge for the purposes of review. All opinions contained within are my own honest reflections.
2020's Slaxx is a movie that I wanted to see during its virtual run at Fantasia Fest but, due to extremely limited screeners (only going to very big outlets) I was unable to see it. Indeed, this gave the movie a certain buzz and hype. A trendy clothing store is launching a new pair of jeans during a chaotic Monday-Madness sale. While the staff are going crazy to get ready for the opening all hell breaks loose when a pair of jeans comes to life, killing everyone in sight. I have to admit that the first time I watched Slaxx I thought it was fun but it felt like certain aspects weren't as developed as I thought they could have been. However, watching it recently watching since its initial festival run I feel like I've come around.
From the outset director Elza Kephart's film is as subtle as a sledgehammer when it comes to being a blood spraying satire on 'woke' cooperation's, shallow influencers, and vanity seeking trend-setters. Kephart holds a mirror up to consumers and shows how something like jeans can come at the very real, very high cost of human lives. This serious subject matter actually juxtaposes quite well with it's surreal, even absurdist premise. I think that its fun watching a pair of pants kill people yet, I think that its enjoyable but doesn't shy away from having something important to say. The message is certain one we have seen before to come degree in other films but never in a way that so perfectly blends savagely sardonic humor. The writing is equally parts fresh and cutting and, for better or worse doesn't spare sensitive topics like worker exploitations and eating disorders. The latter I feel is a good example of how this movie is somewhat shallow some of its humor. Instead of offering a smart examination of certain topics it comes off as punching down and a bit cringe-worthy. I will say that the movie does have a lot of fun with the horror genre and there was some nice subversions of tropes that kept me on my toes. Not to mention the film is well photo, acted with some moments that were so odd yet so utterly brilliant (which I won't spoil here).
Slaxx is a movie that is enjoyable, despite some so-so humor. For anyone that worked in retail or for a big cooperation its not really that far off. Black humor and a biting satirical bent makes this movie a must-watch.