Language : English
Director : Jordan Peele
Writers : Jordan Peele
Cast : Lupita Nyong’o, Winston Duke, Elisabeth Moss, Tim Heidecker, Shahadi Wright Joseph, Evan Alex, Yahya Abdul-Mateen II
Genre : Horror | Mystery | Thriller
Streaming on Amazon Prime.
Jordan Peele takes us on a gripping chase in this twist laden identity horror. After a suspense-setting sequence set in the past that ends on a scary note, the movie comes to the present, giving us time to get accustomed to a very likable, humorous family of four, who seek to have fun at their beach house. Just as things get settled, eerie reminders of the past seem to haunt Adelaide, the mother, starting to connect pieces. Things settle for a moment, and then explode into a terrifying experience as the family gets a visit from people who, to say the least, remind them of themselves.
The movie succeeds in frightening you more than most horror movies would, yet when it wants to follow a comic-style Hollywood quest route, filled with slapstick, situational irony and dark one-liners, then that works as well. As things progress, it becomes more of the latter, but with enough pointers in place to ensure the audience things will turn darker again.
Through the top-class screenplay, engaging pace and unique moments, we go deeper into what turns out to not only be a dramatic reveal, but a metaphor for a divided society. It feels mind-blowing, and for a brief moment, the puzzle feels explained by a ghastly world that was hiding in the background.
However, once that initial awe fades away, you realize that crucial parts of the climax were rushed, and the very creative universe it showcased was never explored enough. Rather, it all came to a sudden halt, leaving lots of questions to be answered.
Despite this flaw, this Jordan Peele adventure is an exhilarating one worth re-watching anytime.
Verdict : 6/7 stars
Jordan Peele gave the cast eleven horror films to watch so they would have “a shared language” when filming: Jaws (1975), Dead Again (1991), The Shining (1980), The Babadook (2014), It Follows (2014), A Tale of Two Sisters (2003), The Birds (1963), Funny Games (1997), Martyrs (2008), Let the Right One In (2008), and The Sixth Sense (1999).
Lupita Nyong’o based Red’s voice on Robert F. Kennedy Jr. and specifically the spasmodic dysphonia he suffers from.
Like The Lost Boys (1987), several key scenes take place on the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk. This is even referenced in-universe, when Adelaide’s mother (Anna Diop) says, “You know, they’re shooting a movie over there by the carousel.”
The words Get Out (2017), which was the title of Jordan Peele’s previous film, can be seen carved into the sides of the entrance of the hall of mirrors.
Between takes, Lupita Nyong’o would remain in character as Red, much to the consternation of the cast and crew.
The doppelgängers toying with and taunting the Wilsons while they’re situated on the couch, simply watching in fear, is a reference to Funny Games (1997)/Funny Games (2007)