"Pearl" is a prequel to the horror movie "X" . The 2 movies were filmed with only a month between them using the same locations. For some ridiculous reason it took "Pearl" 9 months after it's US release to get a EU release, also completely skipping a cinema release of the movie. Are movie companies literally encouraging people to find alternate ways of getting a copy of new movies? Anyway, here it is on Blu-ray in the EU, better very late than never.
"Pearl" is not really a pure horror movie like "X" was. It is a story of a young girl's descend into madness. Yes, you'll find some blood and gore here too, but it doesn't play the biggest part of the movie. Mia Goth wrote this sequel with director Ti West, while they were working on "X". It functions as a backstory for the murderous old woman in "X", and wow, does it work well.
Mia Goth is nothing short of outstanding in "Pearl". She has constant mood changes. She can be kind and nice and then from one second to the next she can despair or change to a murderous psychopath. When people get scared of her, it is usually already too late.
I am special! A star!
Pearl lives a lonely, isolated and boring life on a small farm with her mother [Tandi Wright] and her father [Matthew Sunderland] who is literally a vegetable. Pearl is married to a soldier who is away fighting in the trenches in WW1. Pearl is very unhappy with her life on the farm and she thinks she is meant for much more and is destined to become a dancer and a big star. Her German born mother seems very strict and hard on Pearl, but clearly she knows more about Pearl than most people do and is simply scared of her.
One day the whole world is gonna know my name!
While "X" had a lot of "The Texas Chain Saw Massacre"  vibes to it in the way it was filmed, "Pearl" is filmed totally different. It has a Technicolor look with a very different use of colors. The events in "Pearl" happened in 1918 while the story in "X" happened in 1979. This means that the bright colored house in "Pearl" was old with very faded colors in "X".
I find, that it makes most sense to watch the 2 movies in the order they were released, at least when you watch them for the first time. "X" has some hints and bits and pieces of Pearl's backstory. When you have watched "X" then watch "Pearl" and get the missing pieces of backstory and then quite possibly you'll want to watch "X" again.
I have only watched "Pearl" once and I was blown away by Mia Goth's performance. She is an amazing actress. I am certainly going to be watching "Pearl" again in the next few days. It is a masterpiece of madness. Just don't expect a real horror movie, because it isn't. It is basically a drama with some horror elements.
The best thing about it all is that it is meant to be a trilogy. A third movie "MaXXXine" is planned following Mia Goth's character Maxine from "X". I didn't even like "X" much, when I saw it for the first time in the cinema back in 2022. Maybe it was because I find old people disgusting. Let's just say that I have changed my mind about that movie later on and "Pearl" has certainly helped. I really can't wait for the next movie.
After having watched "Pearl" a second time, I'm gonna go for a top rating. This is the best prequel I have ever watched. It is a perfect movie and Mia Goth truly is a star.