Creep on in on in. Jordan Peele follows up Get Out with a stellar sophomore performance. Lupita Nyong’o shines, but Winston Duke steals the show.
A family’s serenity turns to chaos when a group of doppelgängers begins to terrorize them.
What is your deepest fear? For some it’s heights, or spiders. Some people have fears that we can even begin to imagine, like the fear of peaches. But what about fearing oneself? Deep down we truly are our own worst enemy right? Have you ever seen someone out in public that you swore was someone you know, or stumbled upon a photo of someone who looks just like you? It can be creepy, the old adage that if you ever time travel, you are forbidden to ever see yourself, because the human psyche couldn’t handle something like that. Well now imagine not only seeing a mirror reflection of yourself, but that very person is here to kill you. The concept of duality is very interesting when used correctly in film. What if we all had our down double out there somewhere, but we just didn’t know it? Duality is a very large theme within Jordan Peele’s new movie Us, his incredible follow up to the cultural phenomenon that was Get Out.
I can’t even fathom the amount of pressure Jordan Peele must have felt when making and writing this movie. Get Out literally changed his life forever and will be regarded as one of the best horror movies of all time, and perhaps one of the best movies of this decade. Those are some rather large shoes to fill for your follow up. But, if you had one great idea, you’re bound to have more right? Well, not only is Us going to be a smash hit, in some ways he ups the ante from his previous movie. Onions have layers, Ogres have layers, this movie has many layers. Sometimes adding a ton of layers won’t always translate to success and people enjoying your movie more. In fact peeling back too many layers can be tiresome and at times boring. There’s a ton to digest with Us, it packs a punch. The movie at times can feel psychedelic and almost hypnotic with the imagery we are given. Peele crafts some spectacular shots, one that includes shadows of our family as they walk on the beach. Like I mentioned, duality and mirror images are a large aspect of this film. Speaking of the family, let’s meet the Wilson’s shall we?
Nothing screams vacation like fighting with your family. Now being hunted down and having your doppelgänger trying to kill you is a whole other ball game. Adelaide (Lupita Nyong’o) Gabe (Winston Duke) Jason (Evan Alex) and Zora (Shahadi Wright Joseph) are just your typical American family trying to have some fun at the beach. Now, for a movie like this, there is no way I’m giving away anything, I wouldn’t do that. Just know, the trailers don’t even scratch the surface of what this movie is, which I was pleasantly surprised with. Jordan Peele did an incredible job keeping this thing hush-hush. Lupita gives one hell of a performance, one of the best that I can remember in a horror movie. She’s doing a lot here, because these four are also playing their counterparts. But Winston Duke man, that’s my new guy. The way I would describe him is simple, he’s – “that’s how I would act kind of guy.” What he’s saying, how he’s acting, he’s doing all the things use average joes would do when faced with these circumstances. The best part about this whole film, is how Peele is able to serve up comedy in some scary and suspenseful moments. One misstep and it could have fallen so flat on its face, but it’s the chemistry between our four leads that make it work. They really feel like a family, it’s some of the funniest moments I can ever remember in a horror movie. I want to see this again, which I will, solely for one comedic moment, because I was howling with laughter. The rest of the cast, which is pretty small was just so perfectly crafted. Elizabeth Moss, Tim Heidecker and Cali and Noelle Sheldon play family friends and they were all terrific as well. Fun fact with the twin girls, they played Emma, Ross and Rachel’s daughter in Friends, and now I made you feel old.
My only small gripe with the film was the ending, like I said there is a ton to peel back, no pun intended. I wasn’t exactly sure what Peele was going for and he’s asking a lot from his audience, and either you’re going to go there with him or like myself just have maybe a few questions that seem unanswerable. I am not letting that take away from this terrific, suspenseful, master craft of cinema. Jordan Peele is the real deal, and we have just another gifted film maker among us and I can’t wait to see what he does next. Go see it, go see it twice, lets support this man, because he deserves hit. Us could have the biggest box-office openings in history, couldn’t be happier for the guy.
Nate’s Movie Tour Reviews – Us = 94/100