Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Get Out: Movie Review


Humorous, bizarre and very well made.
Get Out is the type of movie that just begs you to keep watching. The theme of systemic racism has been explored before, the psychological thriller/supernatural element of the suburbs has been done before, even the horror ending has been done before (at least similarly), but none of it has been put together in quite this way before. It’s a very complete movie with brilliantly designed cinematography, and a score that perfectly balances the uneasiness and inherent humour. 2017

Directed by: Jordan Peele

Screenplay by: Jordan Peele

Starring: Daniel Kaluuya, Allison Williams, and Bradley Whitford

Daniel Kaluuya’s Chris is concerned about going home to meet his girlfriend’s parents; they’re white, he’s black, and he’s her first black boyfriend. But it’s okay, because her dad would have voted for Obama for a third time if he could have. That joke occurs early on and more than once, but it’s the portrayal of racism that the movie opens with that really pulls viewers in. A black man is walking alone in the evening along a well-lit street in a nicely-manicured neighbourhood with beautifully designed houses and white picket fences. He rightfully gets very nervous as a car slows down where he’s walking.

Arguably, it’s that type of systemic racism that writer and director Jordan Peele wanted to comment on in this movie. It’s a very different type of racism in the outcome of the plot, and that’s probably why Get Out has hit the epicenter of movie-going sociology: a message for the critics, an absurdly entertaining horror-comedy story for the fans. That works in this case because the movie that it’s all packaged up in is really well made. It’s beautifully shot and compellingly told.

After that opening scene where a black man is ambushed in a white neighbourhood, we cut to the title credits. Not only does it tell us that we’re going to be treated to some interesting performances from Catherine Keener, Bradley Whitford, Stephen Root and Lakeith Stanfield, but the combination of beautiful country cinematography a score that suggests there is more than what meets the eye begging viewers to stay tuned.

The meat of the movie follows Chris as he is introduced to Rose’s white, very rich, parents. They have black servants and a lot of rich white friends, and he finds the whole set-up very strange. Rose seems supportive but unconvinced that anything peculiar is going on. Something peculiar is definitely going on. Luckily for Chris and the audience that his friend Rod (LilRel Howery) is on the case. His humourous attempts to help Chris uncover the truth were excellent, and the very final scene had a clever twist.

It’s humorous, it’s bizarre, and it’s also very well made which should entice everybody. The final third of the movie is full horror, so fans of that genre will probably get more out if it than the rest of us, but I quite enjoyed the hour and three quarters that I spent in Jordan Peele’s world.
Best of 2017