Believe it or not, this is real: we're not just coming up with fake movies to keep us occupied while the cinemas are closed.
We could understand why you'd think that when you read that headline, but Slaxx is a genuine horror movie that you can watch right now on Shudder. And yes, it is about a possessed pair of jeans that go on a killing spree over one bloody night.
Slaxx's setting is the flagship store of the fictional Canadian Cotton Clothes company, which has been brilliantly designed to evoke any trendy clothes shop you've been into, as the company prepares for its latest launch. The 'Super Shapers' jeans are proclaimed to fit perfectly no matter what size.
As a result of the new 'Super Shapers' launch, the staff of CCC – including fresh recruit Libby (Romaine Denis) – are locked into the store overnight to stop anything about the jeans being revealed. Unfortunately for the staff, one pair of 'Super Shapers' jeans has a taste for blood – and being caught in a zipper is about to take on a painful new meaning.
If you're questioning just how a pair of jeans can wreak so much carnage, Slaxx answers that emphatically with a series of inventive deaths. This pair of jeans can't just squeeze the life out of someone, they can kill people in such a wide variety of ways that Freddy Krueger and Jason Voorhees would be jealous.
The effects work to bring the jeans to life is seriously impressive too, whether they're drinking up the blood spilt by their victims or stalking their prey down the corridors of CCC's warehouse. There's even room for a Bollywood dance number, with the end credits showing the ingenious methods used to create the killer jeans and blood-soaked effects.
Given that Slaxx lasts for little over 75 minutes, you're not given the time to get bored with its high-concept premise. Each sighting of the killer jeans brings a smile to those all-in on its ridiculous hook, and they're menacing enough that you might look twice at the next pair of display jeans you see.
It helps that nearly all of the characters are horrible people that you'll want to see offed in gruesome ways. There's very little depth given to them beyond Libby and are mostly just there to be creatively killed. Special mention though does have to go to Brett Donahue who is wonderfully horrid as store manager Craig, more concerned with his potential promotion than the murder spree going on.
CCC prides itself on fair trade and ethical fashion so you can probably already tell how they really get their clothes, as hinted at in the opening scene of a young girl in India picking cotton near an "experimental field" for CCC. If you're after a subtle movie, Slaxx is definitely not that as its social commentary is very heavy-handed.
It's clear the point director Elza Kephart (who co-wrote the script) is trying to make about the fashion industry, but there's no deep revelation here and all it serves to do is kill the momentum. There's also a sour note when the reason for the possession of the jeans is revealed, but to say why would be a spoiler.
Weirdly, Slaxx feels almost ashamed at times of the fact it's a slasher movie centred on a pair of killer jeans. That's not to say Kephart shouldn't have made a social point with her horror movie, but there's a subtler way to do it where you trust the audience to make the connection, rather than laying it on thick.
Anyone coming to Slaxx hoping for a killer jean slasher horror movie will still get their fill though. Some of the deaths might take place off-screen (likely due to creative reasons), but it doesn't skimp on the gore and manages to frequently outdo itself. You just may find yourself wishing it only focused on its killer jean rampage though as it does it so well.
Slaxx is available to watch now on Shudder.
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