- Daniel Kaluuya
- Allison Williams
- Bradley Whitford
- Catherine Keener
- Lil Rey Howery
- Caleb Landry Jones
- Marcus Henderson
- Betty Gabriel
An auspicious debut from TV comic Jordan Peele, Get Out is horror/mystery with a socially aware slant and provocative examination of race relations that is both chilling and
Chris Washington(Daniel Kaluuya) is an African-American photographer who has been dating Rose Armitage(Allison Williams) , who is white. Rose invites him to meet her parents, but Chris is apprehensive of their reaction. They live in plush surroundings in upstate New York and Rose eventually persuades Chris to come with her. Upon arrival, things seem to go well with neurosurgeon Dean(Bradley Whitford) and psychiatrist Missy(Catherine Keener). But although Missy and Dean seem to welcome Chris , their attempts at being friendly and not bothered by his ethnicity come off as very heavy-handed. This is despite the fact they claim to be open-minded people and ones of culture. There is something decidedly off about them that only continues in the ensuing days. Chris was warned by his best friend Rod( Lil Rey Howery) about the way the parents might react but he thought his friend was being overly paranoid and over thinking things. Adding to this deep unease is that two of the servants, in the house are African-American and act very strangely towards Chris. Rose assures him that her family is cool with him, but Chris is unable to shake off the vibe that something sinister is underlying him stating there. As the feeling of paranoia and terror increases(though he attempts to pass it off as Rose’s parents being shocked she is dating a black man), Missy at one point hypnotises Chris without him agreeing to it, Chris soon realises that he is at the centre of something very twisted indeed. He was mainly worried about how Rose’s parents and social circle would reacted to him dating their daughter, but that’s the least of his worries in this creepy horror flick with something to say.
As first time director, Jordan Peele infuses Get Out with a building tension right from the start. He’s clearly well versed in horror as he is in comedy, which both featuring throughout. It’s the confidence of Peele as a first time director that stands out here and impresses with how he takes the time to set up the story and pull you in on the horror that unravels. You’ll probably never look at bingo or the chiming of a spoon on a teacup the same way again after viewing Get Out. While being a very disturbing horror film with oodles of atmosphere, Get Out is also at times laugh out loud funny. It’s got a snappy wit that is best embodied by Chris’s best friend. He says outrageous things but they are often not far from the strange truth st the centre of the film. Wit also appears in the form of satire at people who claim to be open-minded, when in actual fact are very much prejudice. Peele’s writing, which won an Oscar, lampoons this and blends it with the unnerving sense of something being very wrong with the family Chris meets. Get Out is the kind of film I can imagine revisiting again, in order to discover things I may have not noticed upon first viewing. And that’s a compliment at least in my movie viewing book. A dissonant music score keeps you constantly on edge with screeching violins and occasional choral chanting. Also pervading the heavy atmosphere is a moody cinematography that’s also extremely complimentary to the story.
Heading the cast is the talented Daniel Kaluuya. He possesses a kindness, skepticism and realisation as Chris that makes you relate to him. His look of bewilderment at the events often mirrors our own way of approaching the unusual catalogue of creepiness that takes form. Put simply, Kaluuya is an impressive lead who is clearly going places. Allison Williams is also very good as Rose; who might not be what you think when you first look at her and is a testament to the talent of Williams. Bradley Whitford and Catherine Keener are sublimely excellent as the unusual patents whose privileged existence masks something extremely sinister. Both exude a certain level of menace but intelligence too, which is a dangerous yet effective combo. Further creepiness comes in the form of Caleb Landry Jones who has a very offbeat but worrying vibe to him, backed up by Marcus Henderson and Betty Gabriel who seem to have stepped out of The Stepford Wives and into the 21st century. Stealing the show in his appearances has to be Lil Rel Howery, who is an absolute hoot providing the social commentary and outrageous humour of the piece. He’s laugh out loud and heroic at the same time and I very much enjoyed his performance whenever he appeared.
Splendidly unusual, darkly amusing and topical in themes, Get Out succeeds as a very creepy and unnerving horror that stands out indeed and comes highly recommended from me.