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"Get Out" goes beyond standard horror tropes with thrilling results

Jordan Peele has made a name for himself working on and starring in the famous sketch show Key and Peele. Now, he has officially made his directorial debut with 2017’s horror-comedy “Get Out.”

Chris (Daniel Kaluuya), a black man, is skeptical of meeting Rose’s (Allison Williams) white family. Rose comforts him and tells him how her dad wishes he could have voted for Obama a third time. Chris agrees to visit, but soon after arriving he and Rose begin to sense a strangeness from her family.

As a standard horror film, “Get Out” does a lot right - putting it above the low standard set out by the rest of the genre. It utilizes some atypical jump scares found in nearly all horror movies today, but its structure and setup are finely tuned unlike the rest of the genre. Most films toss narrative quality for shock value but Peele refuses to give in to the norm, composing a script that utilizes points as more than just one-note jokes or single scares.

There are a few gripes to have with the film, the most glaring one being the final act. It strays from the first two tonally, but successfully expands upon the theme of the African-American experience in today’s society. The final act is not an entirely lost cause as there are some comedic highlights. Some characters receive uneven screentime that can feel confusing and take away from key scenes only to end up having minimal impact on the film’s finish.

As for the performances, Kaluuya is successful in what is a difficult role to pull off. His composure and vessel into the horror aspects are vital to making the film as successful as it is. That said, LilRel Howery is the stand out star as Chris’ friend/TSA agent.

All in all, “Get Out” succeeds at communicating its message about race and being black in America. It is powerful without feeling overbearing yet its constant presence follows Chris around, with its uneasiness can be profusely felt by all audiences. Use of Childish Gambino’s “Redbone” in the opening credits is essential insight towards how cognizant Jordan Peele is of his end goal.

Grade: A-

“Get Out” opens in theaters Friday, Feb. 24.

draju@theeagleonline.com


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