There are few times in cinematic history when people see a movie and deem it an instant classic. Writer/director Jordan Peele borrowed from the energies of Rosemary’s Baby and Stephen King films to deliver a haunting, easter egg filled masterpiece of social commentary that is so far beyond just being a great thriller/horror movie. Even more significant, it isn’t a black movie that is great and marketed to black audiences, this is just a great movie for EVERYONE.

For those living under a rock, Get Out is a thriller about Chris (Daniel Kaluuya) and his girlfriend, Rose (Allison Williams), as they go through the meet-the-parents milestone of the dating process. The truth behind Rose’s parents acceptance of their interracial relationship is a nerve wracking and mind blowing experience that has to be watched multiple times to be fully appreciated. For the first time in who knows how long, movie ratings site Rotten Tomatoes debuted the movie at or near 100%. The hype is real and for the first time in a long time, the hype is well deserved.

Even from the trailers, I knew that I was going to NEED to see this movie. For months I elbowed my wife that we have to see it only to have her laugh off the notion. Once the movie dropped and the reviews started rolling in, she reluctantly caved in. Now, as we both hear of others who watched the movie, the new thing (aside from discussing the movie itself) is to listen to different people’s experience with regards to the crowd reactions at the theatre. Depending on where you live and the demographic of your audience, the experience could be VERY different. This is ABSOLUTELY why this movie is one that requires at least one theatre experience just to bear witness to that aspect of the film.

My own experience was interesting enough. As the only black couple in the theatre at the time, my wife and I walked in wondering if anyone else in the theatre ‘knew’ what the subject matter of the movie was. We both knew that due to the media hype and reviews that people were going to see this movie simply on the strength of ‘it is a critically acclaimed thriller’ that is all the rave right now. Oh were they surprised!

The first thing my wife and I noticed was that various moments in the film had us both chuckling at moments when the rest of the crowd was awkwardly silent or even cringing. The nefarious subtlety in some of the conversations was funny to my wife and I due to how eerily real world uncomfortable conversations and sayings were. Some of them we’ve either had and been witness to on occasion were being displayed in the movie as ‘wrong’ or questionable to the main character in the movie. It was almost as if we wanted one of the Wayans to pop up in the middle of the movie as is done in Don’t Be a Menace to South Central While Drinking Your Juice in the Hood.

Of course, in this movie, just about every convo or scene would probably have that!

As the movie progressed, we both got wrapped up in the eventual unveiling of Chris’ survival only to realize later that we both didn’t realize the layered significance of so many scenes, discussions, and even background easter eggs. As the interviews and articles flew through both of our social media feeds, we both exponentially increased our love of the film and the performances within.

 

Now and forever more will “The Sunken Place” be a part of black culture as a metaphor for marginalization.

jordan-peele
Writer and director Jordan Peele

In an age when racism is returning to the national discussion as a need for our society to address, Get Out is a stunning artistic conversation starter. Jordan Peele’s ridiculously successful debut film is sure to spawn a host of Hollywood clones. Here’s to hoping the trends sparks a meaningful change in American culture as well.