Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Movie #410: Get Out

Get Out is a horror movie directed by Jordan Peele and starring Daniel Kaluuya, Bradley Whitford, Catherine Keener, Caleb Landry Jones, Allison Williams, Stephen Root, Lil Rey Howery, Betty Gabriel, and Marcus Henderson.

Chris (Kaluuya) is a young black photographer who goes home with his white girlfriend Rose (Williams) to visit her parents for the weekend. He's nervous enough about that, but discovers that her parents are not only vaguely racist in ways he's probably really used to, but her mother Missy (Keener) is a psychiatrist happy to hypnotize away his smoking habit and her brother Jeremy (Jones) is aggressive and drunk. Likewise, the two household staff, Georgina and Walter (Gabriel and Henderson, respectively) are just...strange. They're black, but they don't respond to Chris like they are.

Well, spoiler alert: The whole thing is a setup. The Armitage family belongs to a cult (an "order", actually, though it's a really brief mention) and the weekend is actually an auction for Chris. His intended fate is to have Jim Hudson (Root)'s brain transplanted into his body, where a sliver of his mind will forever live in "the sunken place," a black pit inside his own mind. They've been stealing black people for this purpose for a long time. Why black people? Oh, they're just in fashion.

This movie is goddamn fantastic, and I say that knowing that I'm a white guy watching it which means I'm missing untold amounts of nuance that I just don't have the life experience to get. Kaluuya's performance is amazing, and his ability to look vaguely uncomfortable for a long beat and then just break is chilling. Williams, likewise, keeps you guessing pretty late in the game as to whether she's really in on it, and you really don't want her to be. The final beat, when Chris' TSA buddy Rod (Howery) shows up, had the whole theater holding its breath.

I'm really, really looking forward to Peele doing more horror. I hope he does. The genre needs this kind of talent, and it needs this kind of perspective.

My grade: A
Rewatch value: Probably low because it's so damn intense

Next up: John Wick: Chapter 2