Get Out  (2017)

I was never into horror movies when I was a kid. I grew up in more of the "slasher" era than the "psychological" horror era, so as I've gotten older and horror movies have gotten more cerebral, I've found myself watching more and more of them. I had kind of been avoiding "Get Out" because the "tears pouring out of the eyes" scene freaked me out just enough that I wasn't sure I wanted to watch it...but I finally had a night without my wife or Baby Varacchi, so I dove in.

Chris is a black guy dating Rose, a white girl. The first time he goes to meet her parents, he's apprehensive because she's never brought home a man from another race. The family starts off fine, going out of their way to welcome Chris and point out just how not racist they are. The weekend happens to coincide with a huge annual party, full of friends that are also quick to prove how much they love "the blacks". Things get more weird and more tense and more dark, until a third act when things finally unravel and explode.

While the first two acts were tense, director Jordan Peele lets loose in the final act with a lot of violence and blood. Despite my aversion to the gory slasher flick, it was actually a welcome release from the tension that was built up.

The acting stood out, because every character was "acting" - Rose's father was a racist mad scientist neurosurgeon pretending to be a nice guy; Rose's mother was a racist hypnotist psychiatrist pretending to be a nice woman. There were a lot of levels to work through, especially for the other black members of the cast. Normally actors are tasked with having to react naturally, but in this case, they had to react as though someone else was controlling them. It led to some incredible moments of transformation, with things as subtle as small facial reactions or a tear running down a cheek.

Parts of this movie sufficiently freaked me out, parts made me laugh, parts depressed me, and even the biggest plot twist caught me by surprise. Despite not being able to relate to being oppressed due to my race, I was going for the ride with Chris the whole way.

[Celluloid Hero] gives "Get Out" an 8 out of 10.




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