"Get Out" Movie Review
by Clay Waller ‘21
Warning: the following movie review contains spoilers!
Get Out is categorized as a Horror/Thriller movie written and directed by Jordan Peele. Get Out first premiered on January 23rd, 2017 at the Sundance Film Festival. This film is considered a thriller movie, however it is much more intelligent and sophisticated than your standard thriller.
Jordan Peele sets the stage, having an innocent black man walking through a suburb during the night kidnapped within the first two minutes of the movie; this opening scene sets the tempo for the blatant racism spread throughout the film. The basic plot of Get Out contains a fairly new relationship between a black man, Chris Washington (Daniel Kaluuya), and his white girlfriend Rose Armitage (Allison Williams). It is revealed early into the movie that they have been together for about 5 months, which to them is the “meeting the parents” stage in their relationship. Rose takes Chris out of the city to her parents’ house, which is very far from neighboring homes and even farther from the rest of civilization. During the car ride to the house, Rose reveals that her parents do not know that Chris is black, but she insists her parents aren’t racist and that her Dad “would have voted for Obama a third time if he could.”
Throughout the visit to the Armitage home, Chris is surrounded by racial prejudice coming from the white members of Rose’s family and friends. The first red flag that Chris sees is not even when he met the Armitage family, but during the car ride out into the countryside. During the car ride, a deer flies across the road and runs into their car, so Chris and Rose call the police to report the accident. The cop asks to see Rose’s ID, and then he also asks to see Chris’s ID even though he wasn’t driving or involved in the accident. The cop was clearly racially profiling Chris, only asking to see his ID because he is black. This is a major red flag to Chris on the type of people who he is about to encounter. The second red flag for Chris occurs when he arrives at the Armitage home. They have two black servants that work for them around the house and in the yard. Rose’s father Dean Armitage (Bradley Whitford) tries to make Chris feel comfortable by telling him that he is aware that their family having black servants seems cliche and racist, but that Chris should not worry because Dean “would have voted Obama for a third term.” The third red flag for Chris was the talk between him and Rose’s brother Jeremy (Caleb Landry Jones) during dinner. Jeremy asks Chris if he watches professional MMA fighting, and tells Chris that he should train and compete in MMA because he “would be a beast.” This is a clear prejudice towards Chris’s athletic ability due to his race, which made Chris uncomfortable. This is just the start of racially insensitive comments.
The following day the Armitage family has their annual party where they invite many other families and friends over for food and drinks. When these other families and friends arrive, they greet Chris and they all make obviously race-related comments. For example, one man tells Chris that he was a professional golfer, following up with that he knows Tiger Woods and that he thinks Tiger Woods is the best golfer ever. Another example of racially insensitive comments from the families is when Chris meets a man who tells him that fair skin used to be popular, but “the pendulum has swung back” and that “black is now in fashion.” This was clearly off putting to Chris, as these people were trying to make a connection to Chris only about his race.
Get Out has many key moments of racism throughout the entirety of the film, and I got an insight as to some of the daily difficulties that black people have to go through, even when just meeting strangers and the assumptions and stereotypes that they think and say. Chris stayed strong during these moments, making it clear to the viewers that he was used to this, and that having people try to make connections to him only about his race was a common normality that he has to deal with.
With an intense plot and a great job of addressing modern day racial prejudice, Get Out is much more than your average thriller movie. Overall I give Get Out a 4.75/5 stars because of the cinematography, plot, acting, sound effects, and major themes. The cinematography combined with the sound effects really pushes the film into the horror/thriller genre, giving many spooky moments, making you question even your own reality after watching the movie. The plot of the movie combined with the themes gives you a cinematic viewing experience that you have never seen before, and one that is truly unique.
The fact that Jordan Peele decided to create a movie about modern racial prejudice twisted with the elements and plot of a horror/thriller film really stands out to me, as this shows how racism is a true horror to the people subject to it in the world we live in.
The acting to me was very good overall, with ominous movements and facial expressions, as well as the dynamic between Chris and Rose’s family. Rose’s family did a good job acting as “secret racists” towards Chris, and I believe the pace that their true identity was revealed to Chris was timely, as this added to the suspense and viewing experience. I would have given Get Out a 5/5 if it contained more scary moments throughout the movie, however the fear factor of the film is definitely better for the general public. I highly recommend you watch this movie if you haven’t already because you are in for a very enjoyable hour and forty five minutes.