With the 89th Academy Awards finally behind us—though the controversy will continue to linger indefinitely—we can all shift our focus to films in 2017. Going into Jordan Peele’s directorial debut, “Get Out,” I had little to no set expectations. I expected a goofy or campy horror flick from one half of the hilarious comedy duo Key and Peele. Instead I viewed one of the smartest and well-crafted horror/suspense films I had seen in quite some time and easily the best film of 2017 thus far.
The film begins with the plot to the famous 1967 film starring Spencer Tracy, Sidney Poitier and Katherine Hepburn, “Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner.” Rose Armitage (Allison Williams) plans to introduce her parents Missy and Dean, played by veteran actors Catherine Keener and Bradley Whitford, to her African-American boyfriend, Chris Washington, played by rising star, Daniel Kaluuya. Chris is quite anxious to travel to the very Caucasian suburb, but his girlfriend assures him everything will be fine.
Upon entering the town, the immediate racism is present and sits in the background like an elephant in the room. Several family members and friends come over to visit and the prejudice begins to consume Chris but also the viewer. I began to feel completely uncomfortable watching the movie. Eventually Chris meets a few other African-American characters, but there is something not right about them. Chris further investigates with the help of his friend, who is a part of the Transportation Security Administration (TSA), who serves as the comic relief, and begins to uncover what exactly is happening to this small, white, privileged town.
The brilliance of this film is that it is a modern take on a classic movie, with a lesson that is still pertinent today. Peele successfully shows modern day privilege and racism through comedy, horror and suspense. What makes the movie exceptional is that even without the cultural and social lessons of the film, it still makes for an amazing horror film.
“Get Out” is completely suspenseful and like any good horror flick, gives the viewer information about the setting and characters in small doses at a time. Who is good and who is bad and who is not what they seem? This film is remarkably like an onion that reveals more layers as we slowly peel away.
If you are looking for a good horror movie, which is usually incredibly hard to find, I highly recommend the extremely satisfying film, “Get Out.”