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Peele’s “Get Out” excites, provides excellent social commentary

Livvy Cohen, Staff Writer

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Leading up to the release of new horror movie “Get Out,” the expectations were high. Advertisements and trailers presented little information about the context of the movie, but I had my hopes up thanks to Jordan Peele of “Key and Peele,” the director and writer of the movie.

Before its release in theaters, the new thriller starring Daniel Kaluuya and Allison Williams received an incredible 100% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. During its opening weekend, “Get Out” made $33.4 million, seeing instant success.

The story follows the relationship between Chris Washington (Daniel Kaluuya), an African-American man, and his girlfriend Rose Armitage (Allison Williams), a white woman. Chris, traveling with Rose, goes to meet her parents, Dean (Bradley Whitford) and Missy Armitage (Catherine Keener), for the first time. Sounds like a cliche romance, right? Very, very wrong.

Before going, Chris is wary of the fact that Rose’s parents are unaware he’s a black man. Rose comforts him, introducing a recurring joke about how her father would vote for Obama a third term if he could. Upon arriving at Rose’s parent’s home, it is already tense at the start.

Chris sees a groundskeeper and maid working for the family, both of which are black. An uneasy feeling creeps up on both viewers and the main character. During meals, Rose’s family members all ask questions revolving around his race and make uncomfortable comments towards Chris, quickly proving to be a flagrantly racist family as the plot unfolded. The thickening plot revolving around race and violence wouldn’t have been nearly as successful if it wasn’t for the actors who portrayed them.

Rose, an innocent young woman who quickly turns vicious, was played by Williams who managed to pull off the both extreme sides of her character. Her parents, Dean and Missy, added to the creep-factor of this family, causing an extreme uneasy feeling at any given moment that they were on the screen. Rose’s brother, Jeremy, played by Caleb Landry Jones, was possibly the most disturbing and menacing of them all. Jones brought both appearance and actions into this role, resulting in an eerie and despicable character.

During Chris’s trip, his best friend Rodney “Rod” Williams (Lil Rel Howery) is kept updated by all the unusual events, including hypnotism, strange dreams, and extremely unusual people he meets. Rod managed to keep tense situations light, serving as the much-needed comic relief in this hair-raising, blood-tingling movie.

“Get Out” managed to discuss the idea of white power and enslavement in a tactful way, pressing viewers to discuss and consider the theme of the plot rather than giving a sense of Peele simply “preaching to the crowd.”

Peele successfully presented the fact that there are white people exclaiming their empathy for the stereotypes and lack of empathy for the black community, while still feeling the need to maintain a sense of control over them.

“Get Out” proved to be worth the excitement that I held beforehand, as it successfully took the popular genre of horror/thriller to discuss significant issues of racism in today’s society in a creative way.

9/10

Genre: Horror, Thriller, Satire

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Peele’s “Get Out” excites, provides excellent social commentary