Jordan Peele’s “Get Out”

Jordan Peele's

Written and directed by comedian Jordan Peele, formerly of the hit TV show “Key and Peele,” “Get Out” was one of the best movies of the year. The horror movie was actually a mixture of many genres, but horror and comedy were the most prevalent.

The movie follows the couple. Chris and Rose played by Daniel Kaluuya and Allison Williams. The story starts with Chris being nervous to go to Rose’s parents’ house because he’s black, and her family is white. He asks her in the very beginning of the movie, “Have you told [your parents] that I’m black?” He only becomes more nervous when Rose nonchalantly tells him that she hasn’t told them yet because she doesn’t think it’s a problem, and because she says that her parents aren’t racist.

On the way to Rose’s parents’ house in upstate New York, Chris and Rose hit a deer, which damages their car, and flies off the side of the road. This is the first moment in the movie where Jordan Peele expertly and subtly places race relations in the U.S. at the forefront of the movie. As Chris goes to check out the dying deer, Rose calls and talks to a white police officer. As soon as Chris goes back to the car, the officer asks to see his driver’s license. Chris reaches for it, even though he wasn’t driving, but Rose successfully convinces the officer that it wasn’t necessary. This is a clear illustrations of the shaky relationship between the police—specifically white policemen—and black people.

When Rose and Chris finally reach Rose’s parents’ house, things already seem off to Chris. He doesn’t expect to see other black people there, but there are two of them: Georgina the maid, and Walter, the gardener. Their behavior is vastly different from Chris’ previous interactions with black people, and he finds it weird that the only black people there happen to work for Rose’s parents. However, Rose’s parents seem normal to him. Even if her brother is a little weird, Chris sort of gets over his initial anxiety. This is where the twists and jump scares start, so this is where I’ll end talking about the plot in order to avoid spoilers.

The best part of the movie, without a doubt, is Peele’s expert way of foreshadowing throughout the movie. On a second viewing of the movie, every action by many of the characters is revealed to be for their own motives. This was done so subtly, however, that it was almost impossible to catch on a first viewing.

There was also the huge theme of race relations in America, at least as they pertain to black Americans, which I thought was handled brilliantly by Peele. He managed to make a statement without compromising quality, which is a very difficult task. He didn’t criticize the obvious racism that exists openly in right-wing circles, but instead chose to criticize white liberals for their subtle racism, and the uncomfortable situations it puts black people in.

Another strong point of the movie was the comic relief, more often than not delivered by Lil Rel Howery’s character Rod, which never seemed out of place or unnecessary. Rod is a TSA agent, which are stereotypically not very useful, but proves to be an important character in the plot. Unlike many characters inserted in movies for comic relief, Rod is actually pivotal to the plot, not just there to make the audience laugh.

The final strong point of the movie were the performances by the actors in their roles. Daniel Kaluuya and Allison Williams were perfect in their roles as the main characters, as was the aforementioned Lil Rel Howery as Rod. However, I believe that the best performances in the movie are those of Rose’s mom, dad, and brother, played by Catherine Keener, Bradley Whitford, and Caleb Landry Jones, respectively. They gave outstanding performances that supplemented the rest of the movie, and added to the greatness of it. Their characters were shrouded in an eerie mystery until the end of the movie, which is a testament to their ability to play ambiguous characters so well.

Overall, “Get Out” was a really great movie. The twists were unexpected, the performances outstanding, and the ability of this movie to stay entertaining on repeat viewings is one of the greatest of any movie. Jordan Peele should be applauded for his work for years to come, and I know I’ll watch his next movie. It is one of the best movies of the year, and its nomination for best picture at this years’ Oscars is definitely deserved.