By: Movie Snurb (Three Beers) –
XOXO is a Netflix Original film and follows six strangers as their lives intertwine and change forever during one fateful night at the biggest Rave in America, XOXO. XOXO is supposed to be like EDC, where people who look like they belong at Burning Man, flock to hear EDM, and dance their ass off. We follow a young guy who gets booked at XOXO after having a song blow-up on YouTube. His best-friend and manager helped him book it, but has trouble finding his friend at XOXO after accidentally taking LSD. We follow a girl who is meeting a guy she met online for the first time. We see an older guy (played by Chris D’Elia) who doesn’t enjoy the new techno scene, but who is forced to go to XOXO for monetary reasons. Lastly, we follow a couple who are going to XOXO for the last time together because one has to move away for a job while the other stays for school. Everyone is searching for something bigger or their calling, or even true love, and it all culminates at XOXO.
XOXO is actually a fun ride through a haze of drugs, promiscuity, and music. The use of music with visual aesthetics to show the effect of LSD at a rave like EDC or XOXO is brilliant. I honestly believe the film could’ve benefited from being released in theaters. The bright visuals along with the blaring EDM would’ve made for an incredible experience.
The film also boasts a very realistic feel. At times you’d think you were watching a documentary about EDC rather then a film about a fake rave called XOXO. The filmmakers really had an eye to detail as for certain areas of a rave or the outfits that the ravers would wear. It’d be easy to just put normal clothes on the extras or some glow sticks and call it good. However, the costume design was very keen on certain outfits or how people make wear their hair or even shoes and make-up. It was nice to see such attention to detail with what could’ve been a throwaway film.
I loved the music for the film. Any film about music should’ve have a killer soundtrack, that honestly is one of the most important parts to a music film. There are some scenes in the film that could stand on their own as music videos. The use of music intensifies and helps show what tripping on LSD at a rave would be like. Without such great music the film would fall apart, because it’s the music that helps move this film along, it acts as its lifeblood. This soundtrack is an album that could stand on its own.
This film at times is rather cheesy and cliché. It doesn’t take away from the overall quality of the film. However, it makes the film predictable with certain characters’ story arcs. For example, the girl who is meeting the guy she met online for the first time- well, surprise, surprise he turns out to be total douche. If you’re paying one iota of attention, you’ll see that coming a mile away. Along with the ending; I won’t complain about the ending, but it is a little cheesy.
At times when it comes to the people on drugs the acting is a little much. I get that they are supposed to be on drugs, but they don’t need to be that obvious about it. Some people will be whacked out of their minds, but this film makes it seem like they’re more frequent then the rare drug addict at a typical rave.
XOXO is a fun EDM trip that is a quick and easy watch. If you hate EDM or the new age culture, then I don’t recommend this film. If you like EDM and need to kill 90 minutes, then I’d get on Netflix and check it out.
XOXO (2016) Drinking Game
Take a Drink: every time you find yourself grooving to the music.
Do a Shot: every time you see someone rolling.
Take a Drink: whenever something trippy happens.
Finish your Drink: for the great music.