Film Review: ‘Get Out’

'Get Out' Review: Jordan Peele's Brilliant
Courtesy of Universal Pictures

Comedian Jordan Peele's race-based horror movie combines genuine thrills with a no-holds-barred critique of black-white relations.

“Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner” meets “The Stepford Wives” in “Get Out,” in which a white girl brings her black boyfriend home to meet her parents, whose superficially warm welcome masks an unthinkably dark secret. Blending race-savvy satire with horror to especially potent effect, this bombshell social critique from first-time director Jordan Peele proves positively fearless — which is not at all the same thing as scareless. In fact, from the steady joy-buzzer thrills to its terrifying notion of a new way that white people have found to perpetuate the peculiar institution of slavery, “Get Out” delivers plenty to frighten and enrage audiences. But it’s the fact that Peele doesn’t pull a single one of his punches that makes his Blumhouse-backed debut a must-see event.

First teased in a secret midnight screening at the Sundance Film Festival, “Get Out” represents a searing political statement wrapped in the guise of a more innocuous genre: the escape-the-crazies survival thriller, à la “Deliverance” or “The Wicker Man,” where sympathetic characters are held captive by a deranged cult. Except in this case, the crazies are the liberal white elite, who dangerously overestimate the degree of their own enlightenment — which means that Peele hasn’t gone after the easy target (assumed-racist Trump voters) but the same group that voted for Obama (and would’ve elected him to a third term, if they could).

In theory, horror may seem like a stretch for Peele (one half of the “Key and Peele” sketch-comedy duo), and yet both genres feed on the desire to provoke a physical reaction from audiences. In “Get Out,” the protagonist, a dark-skinned black man named Chris (Daniel Kaluuya, most recently seen in “Sicario”), is an up-and-coming big-city photographer who’s been dating a white girl, Rose (Allison Williams of “Girls”), for five months — long enough that he can’t wriggle out of an invitation to visit her family, even if the thought makes him nervous. “Do they know I’m black?” he asks.

Their love is color-blind, but the world isn’t — and Chris is rightfully wary of how other people might react to seeing them together. When they get to her folks’ house, however, the Armitage family’s reception couldn’t be warmer. Played by Catherine Keener and Bradley Whitford, her parents are a hypnotherapist and a neurosurgeon, who welcome Chris into their tastefully furnished home without so much as batting an eye.

But there’s something off about the help. Live-in handyman Walter (Marcus Henderson) and housekeeper Georgina (Betty Gabriel) are the only black people for miles around, and to Chris’ eyes, they seem just a little too obedient, moving in an almost lobotomized daze. When not busy with chores, Walter runs at top speed around the estate, while Georgina wastes long hours gazing at her own reflection — zombie-like behaviors whose significance will eventually be revealed, but strike Chris (and the audience) as more than a little unsettling in the meantime.

Equally unnerving are Chris’ hyper-polite interactions with Mr. and Mrs. Armitage, who pretend not to notice their guest’s skin color, while secretly congratulating themselves on how accepting they are, as when Rose’s father shares how proud he is that his dad ran alongside Jesse Owens in the 1936 Olympics, where the gold-medalist’s wins put Hitler in his place — clearly not an opinion he would feel compelled to share if Chris were white. It all strikes the young man as weird, though Chris is obliged to smile and nod, while his only way to reality-check the situation is to ask Rose (who’s convinced that he’s reading too much into everything), or else to call his black best friend, a worst-case-scenario-inclined TSA officer played by comedian Lil Rel Howery.

Rose’s advice: Relax. Their ill-timed visit coincides with a big annual gathering, which brings a bunch of rich people over for a picnic — all of them white, except for a token Asian and one other “brother” (Lakeith Stanfield), whom audiences have seen abducted in the film’s tone-setting opening scene. The Armitages’ friends also seem far more accepting of Chris than he would have anticipated, though their questions leave him feeling uncomfortable, and when he presses Stanfield’s character for his take on the situation, the guy snaps, uttering the unheeded warning of the film’s title.

By this time, however, Chris has gotten in too deep, as the feel of “Get Out” shifts from eerie suspense-setting to full-on horror-movie mode — though it should be said that Peele has effectively kept audiences on edge since the beginning, sending occasional jolts through the crowd that, once viewers realize they’ve been tweaked, translate into appreciative “you got us!” laughs. Practically all horror movies use humor to modulate the tension, but Peele takes it further, carving out room for full-blown comedy to coexist alongside the increasingly unsettling mystery of what the Armitages have in store for their guest.

The disconcerting score and occasional jump-scares have been there all along, but it’s not until Chris awakens to find himself officially held captive that the movie finally starts to really feel like a Blumhouse production — and Peele relishes how over-the-top he can finally go. By this point, audiences have come to realize whom Chris must kill to get out, and that struggle is pitched at such a degree that audiences actually cheer as he gorily eliminates the white people who stand in his way. Call it payback for all the expendable black characters that Hollywood horror movies have given us over the years. Here’s a movie in which a person of color actually makes it to the closing credits, though Peele might question whether that qualifies as a happy ending.

Clearly, “Get Out” will play very differently to black and white audiences — and if the film doesn’t rile a significant contingent of the latter, it simply isn’t doing its job. But there’s something telling in the underlying anxiety that Peele’s script exploits, from the opening scene (in which an uneasy black man walking alone in a predominately white suburb recalls the fate of Trayvon Martin) to the last, when the arrival of a police car suggests a near-certain turn for the worse.

What a watershed feat Peele has pulled off, delivering such a gloriously twisted thriller that simultaneously has so much to say about the state of affairs in post-Obama America. “Get Out” goes there, so to speak, and though one could argue that it crosses the line, the film’s subversive p.o.v. challenges the place of white privilege from which most pop culture is conceived. By revealing how the ruling majority gives freedoms, but they can also take them away, Peele seizes upon more than just a terrifying horror-movie premise; he exposes a reality in which African-Americans can never breathe easy.

Film Review: 'Get Out'

Reviewed at Sundance Film Festival, Jan. 24, 2017. MPAA Rating: R. Running time: 104 MIN.

Production

A Universal Pictures release and presentation of a Blumhouse Prods., QC Entertainment production, in association with Monkeypaw Prods. Producers: Sean McKittrick, Jason Blum, Edward H. Hamm Jr., Jordan Peele. Executive producers: Raymond Mansfield, Couper Samuelson, Shaun Redick, Jeanette Volturno.

Crew

Director/writer: Jordan Peele. Camera (color, widescreen): Toby Oliver. Editor: Gregory Plotkin.

With

Daniel Kaluuya, Allison Williams, Catherine Keener, Bradley Whitford, Caleb Landry Jones, Stephen Root, Milton "Lil Rel" Howery, Betty Gabriel, Marcus Henderson, Lakeith Stanfield.

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  1. Christi says:

    If the movie was flipped with blks trying to steal a white person brain it wouldn’t make any sense cause a blk person can’t be a closet racists they can’t be racists period so if you flip the script white people so white liberals will steal be racists when it comes to a conclusion cause once they move a white person brains into a blk person body what will that do make them racists white liberals at the end of the are still racists you can flip the script but it want stop a racists person mindset.

  2. Christi says:

    And yes another person will say they don’t get the message if this movie especially if they not African american, are the typical idiots whom are blk men who dont want to face this movie cause it’s truth.Jordan Peele may be mixed race but I respected his idea of this movie cause he lived both sides blk and white.how many biracial people you know would have been bold to expose white liberals I knew my whole life white liberals are the worst I knew once this movie came some people will be in their feelings.

  3. Guillaume says:

    I’m just a good ol’ 70-year old white fella who found this surprisingly well-crafted movie absolutely hilarious! Far more than drama, horror, or thought-provoking social commentary, this film is satirical comedy at its laugh-out-loud funniest. In other words, don’t bother looking too deep, y’all!

  4. salvaje20 says:

    I just watched it and I don’t see the deeper meanings or the racial satire/symbolism that everybody is talking about. It’s just another version of “Self/less” that came out a couple years ago. It’s just another psychological horror flick in a long line of them.

  5. Lynne Throop says:

    This movie is brilliant in its understanding of the REAL dilemma in race relations today, i.e. the LIE of white liberals’ “concern ” and “love” for us (people of color). People, THIS is our enemy! Wake up!

  6. J Lee says:

    Wow, to describe the Asian character as just “token” reveals the writer’s lack of understanding about the complexities of race-relations in America.

    It sounds like a lot of this film’s nuance was lost on many people. Get educated. Yikes.

  7. Jeff says:

    Spoiler, much?

  8. Boomer Mom says:

    Peele may be familiar with Franz Fanon’s concept “colonialization of the mind.” His depiction of the black body captured and co-opted for white pleasure, amusement, exploitation, and re-appropriation echoes Fanon’s idea that European colonialization resulted in the African “mind” being captured and transformed into systemic dependency. Men and women in this film are stolen from their lives and literally from their own bodies. Their talents are appropriated for white perceived needs – for stereotyped sexual pleasure, for stereotyped physical prowess, for stereotyped expectation of subservience. The refreshing turn at the end of Get Out for me, was the missing trope – I think Peele will know what I mean – the “Magic Negro” (Google if you don’t know) in this insightful film does not rescue the white victim, but rather saves the black hero. An excellent reversal of the usual Hollywood trope of the black man, who is tragic but doomed, as he saves the white hero.

  9. I believe Mr. Peele is “interracial” himself.

    And, the whole idea of ‘racism’, itself, is such stupid minded thinking… and, so archaic… among the human being gene pool — today — that to simply call it out for what it is — abhorrent and horrifying — (either as blatant aggression or insidious passive aggression; aka: microaggression) and simply frame that within a “horror movie” genre…

    is really quite simple… and, genius. (The best to Mr. Peele and his new movie.) Thank you.

  10. James says:

    I honestly think Peele is trolling white liberals (who have given this film 100% on rotten tomatoes and seem completely blind to how anti-interracial couples this movie is) and black people in general, a lot of whom are using this film to make anti-interracial couples arguments on social media. I think he wishes people would hate this piece of segregationist garbage–which clearly plays up stereotypes black men/white women face daily–or at least point out that it is no way anti-racist.

  11. ROGER says:

    I agree with the author’s praise in his second sentence about race savvy social satire. One question though: The premise of the movie is that white people envy blacks physical characteristics and “coolness” and so kidnap blacks so they can put white brains into black bodies.

    So here’s the question: had the premise of the move been flipped and been that black people envy white people for their intellect and so kidnap white people to put white brains into black bodies, would the author still praise the movie for its “race savvy social satire”?

    • DS says:

      I think you have misunderstood the premise of this movie (I would not even call that the premise). I think that this is a more accurate description: white people, or white liberals’s “love” for black people is based on the fetishisation of the black body or so called “genetic make-up” that they associate with youth, sexual prowess, strength ect… and I think the crux of the issue here is not this dangerous perception in itself but more on the attitude of ownership over black bodies, that they are theirs to look at, comment upon, touch, own ect… So I don’t think your flipped script would address the same issues.

    • Yai says:

      Roger, I think if a film were to “flip the script” if you will and have blacks stealing the intellect of whites it would be considered racist for the simple fact that it would perpetuate a myth that was debunked long ago after the credibility of The Bell Curve was undermined. Simply put, the very thought of such a film reveals a level of unconcious bias we have. Because a black man may want to be white just so he could get approved for a loan easier or not be stopped by the police every time he drives home in his BMW. There are facets of white privilege that are real and frustrating to many blacks but a superior intellect is certainly not one of them. If anything it is the ability to obtain favor in this country without regard to merit, that makes “whiteness” even vaguely desirable.

    • Cameron J. says:

      White people are not smarter than Black people lol…the opposite set of preconceptions are true, whereas your intellect example was personal bias creeping in. Check yourself.

      • Roger says:

        Hi Yai, I agree that a film which “flipped the script” would be viewed as racist because the idea that whites are intellectually superior to blacks is a myth. Then Yai – would you agree that it is also a myth that black people are more physically attractive and desirable than whites? I would say this is as much a myth as the myth of white intellectual superiority. “Get Out” uses as a central tenant of the plot line the premise that blacks are more attractive and desirable or, to satisfy the folks who would quibble about semantics in an effort to avoid the obvious implications of answering the question – some people PERCEIVE blacks to be more attractive and desirable than whites. So something strikes me as amiss here. A film with the premise that whites are superior to blacks in some way (intellectual superiority) would be panned as racist, while a film with the premise that blacks are superior to whites in some way (physical attractiveness and desirability) is not only NOT racist, but considered by many including our esteemed film critic Peter D., to be “race-savvy social commentary”. Why this apparent contradiction?

    • Arthur says:

      @ROGER “Had the premise of the movie been flipped and been that black people envy white people for their intellect and so kidnap white people to put white brains into black bodies”

      How would you steal someone’s intellect by switching brains? All you would do is place your brain into their body, which wouldn’t make you any smarter.

      • ROGER says:

        No Cameron, I’m not going to “check myself”. I don’t think whites are more intelligent than blacks. I also don’t think blacks are “cooler” than whites or have bodies that are physcially more attractive than whites. The premise of the movie Get Out was that blacks are both cooler and more physcially attractive than whites, and from your comment “the opposite set of preconceptions are true” am I to take that you find truth in this premise? If so, it is definately you who needs to “check yourself”. And while you’re “checking yourself” consider how your post answers my question of what would people think of the movie if the premise had been reversed?

  12. Lou says:

    so if this against all of those anti-black hollywood horror movies then its an anti-liberal movie.

    its the liberals that own & govern hollywood.

    so why do blacks always vote for liberals? liberals hate blacks and use them for votes.

    ask black voters what has white liberal hollywood and what have white liberal politicians done for them lately?

    also, ask blacks what did the first black liberal president do to alleviate racism, prejudice, crime and poverty for the black community in America?

    • Vickie says:

      Roger, what movie did you see. The movie was about perceived stereotypes that whites and blacks have about each other. In addition to the realities that Black people deal with in a racist society and the privilege that Whites have in this society. Peele, in this movie in no way stated that black people are cooler or whites are more inteliigent than Blacks. What he did was bring out the perceptions that held by Whites and Black for each other and someones perception is their reality, and they have to deal with that. For anyone seeing the movie, he just lays it out there for you to see and have honest conversations about. I loved the movie and agree that it is intelligent and thought provoking.

    • Medina says:

      The premise of the movie is not the blacks are “cooler or more physically attractive than whites”. its that white racists has implied as much and implied a distain for blackness as it equally covets the very characteristics they despise. The premise is also that missing black people are less of a concern in society (something that’s been proven time & time again with media coverage).

      The notion that whites are superior in every way and the inherent focus of everything is par for the course in most movies and nobody bats an eye. But suddenly this movie is a problem. That’s hilarious.

      • Roger says:

        That’s fine Vickie, if you want to say “perceptions’ and “perceived stereotypes” instead of saying “black people (literally) are cooler”. So instead of saying that the premise of the movie was that blacks are (literally) cooler and more attractive than whites, I’ll say the premise of the movie was that blacks are PERCEIVED as being cooler and more attractive than whites Then I’ll go right back to what I asked in my original post: suppose the movie’s premise had been altered and had been that blacks envied whites for their PERCEIVED superiority in intelligence and so kidnapped whites to do some sort of “Order of the Coagula’ process on them to put white intellect into their own black bodies. Would such a movie be praised as “race savvy social satire’, or would it be panned as racist? What do you think Vickie? While thinking about it, I suggest reading Cameron J’s post above. I suspect his would represent the typical response were the movie’s premise to be flipped in this way.

    • ronehjr says:

      You don’t know anything about the brain

      • Roger says:

        Kelli,
        Appreciate the response. You’re trying real hard to not see my point though. I’d say when you delve of into statements such as this: “the real world fact that Whites… continues to this day in so many facets.”, you’re not only trying to avoid seeing my point, l but you’re tossing out (perhaps intentionally, perhaps unknowingly) deflections and distractions to avoid trying to see my point.
        My question is very clear: Would the movie still be considered race savvy social commentary, if the premise were flipped? , you never answer that question. Just give a straight-forward to answer to the question Kelli. If the premise of the movie were to be flipped and to be that some blacks perceived whites to be of greater intelligence than blacks and so performed an Order of Coagula-type process on whites to put white intellect into their bodies, would this still be considered race-savvy social satire, nor not?
        Roger

      • Kelli says:

        “suppose the movie’s premise had been altered and had been that blacks envied whites for their PERCEIVED superiority in intelligence and so kidnapped whites to do some sort of “Order of the Coagula’ process on them to put white intellect into their own black bodies. Would such a movie be praised as “race savvy social satire’, or would it be panned as racist?”

        Roger such a movie would be seen as science fiction. Inherent in this tale – indeed the gas in the car of this tale – is the real world fact that Whites previously held, and due to the state of social affairs, CURRENTLY hold, the ability to enslave another people. The switching of brains to obtain physical attributes was only allegory for the reality of the exploitation of blacks for their physicality – admired and hated simultaneously – since the slave trade began and continues to this day in so many facets. Blacks (or any other race in this country) have never been in this position so this would not be a credible scenario that allowed enough suspension of disbelief to set the horrific stage. Let me clear something up, however, Blacks do not perceive whites to have superior intellect, whites perceive that about themselves. What I love about this movie, and what I see in the defensive reactions of some whites, and the over-the-top acceptance of other whites who don’t want to admit to the discomfort that they felt, is that for the first time EVER, on celluloid, though fantastical fiction, White people are realizing that blacks are scared of THEM. That they are often the monster in the dark just waiting to jump out at you. That even the most educated, socialized, liberalized still see Blacks as things to be exploited in one way or another and that ultimately, in our current society, Black lives really DON’T matter. That was the point.

      • Roger says:

        I guess you didn’t watch the part of the Zimmerman trial where Racheal Jeantel testified or read transcripts of her testimony. I’m talking specifically about the part where Trayvon tells Jeantel that someone is folllowing him and refers to him as a creepy-ass cracker, and the part where Trayvon says he is going to go to him and find out why he was following him. Jeantel describes how she told him to forget and just go home, don’t put himself in danger because the guy could be a child rapist. Jeantel claims she was practically begging him to just go home but Trayvon insists on going to the man and confronting him. Importantly, Jeantel states that Trayvon said he was actually right outside his (fathers) house when he said he wanted to go and confront the man. This is important because the scuffle between Zimmerman and Martin occurred some distance from Trayvon’s fathers house. So while it is true that Zimmerman followed Martin, it is also true that Zimmerman discontinued following Travon and it was in fact Trayvon who then pursued Zimmerman, catching up to him and then assaulting him, just like he told Jeantel he would on the phone.

        You don’t need to take my word on this Medina. You can look up the transcript of the court proceeding on the internet and read all this yourself. I suspect you are not going to do that though. You mind appears made up on this issue and the triviality of facts and evidence will bear no weight for you on this issue.

        Also –I don’t think Trayvon “deserved it”. I do think though that actions have consequences. If you take the action of assaulting someone, whether they were following you or not, then don’t be surprised if the consequence of that action is that the person has a gun and shoots you.

      • Roger says:

        Medina: “The notion that whites are superior in every way and the inherent focus of everything is par for the course in most movies and nobody bats an eye.”

        “Most movies”, “superior in every way” . Ok – name a half dozen movies (shouldn’t be difficult since “most” movies would apply) which posit the notion that “whites are superior to blacks in every way”

        Fair enough, Medina, I’ll agree that the premise of the movie was that blacks are cooler and more physically attractive than whites is a premise advanced in the movie by white racists. Who advances the premise in the movie, or even if the premise is true or false, supportable or unsupportable, is irrelevant. The fact is that the premise of the film, the whole reason the whites perpetrate their evil, the only reason the main character is even at the location where the vast majority of the film takes place, relies on the premise that blacks are (or, as you astutely point out, these white folks believe) that blacks are cooler and more physically attractive than whites.
        That IS the premise Medina. Given that premise, I’ll ask again… had the premise of the move been flipped and been that black people envy white people for their intellect and so kidnap white people to put white brains into black bodies, would the author still praise the movie for its “race savvy social satire”.

      • mcgwynne says:

        Medina’s problem is in his personal perception that “White privilege” is in “most movies”. He sees things through a racial lens. Bound to make him feel bad. Guess he likes the “victim” role. Trouble with that is you have to play it all the time.

  13. Rex says:

    Many, MANY white people will not be offended by this because they all know other white people — relatives, friends, colleagues — who love draping themselves with the “black people love us” flag and patting themselves on the back, invariably on Facebook or other social media so their friends can see what progressive SJW’s they are, or to assume that those who see through their delusion are automatically Trump-loving conservative bigots, which couldn’t be farther from the truth. By the way, check out the LONG-standing website blackpeopleloveus.com to see a very funny take on this EXACT SAME concept. I’m sure Peele saw it at some point over the years, and likewise realized the potential horror inherent in it.

    • Alex says:

      Well spotted, I’m pretty sure he’s seen that site — Peele’s wife is actually the *creator* of blackpeopleloveus.com!

  14. loco73 says:

    “Daniel Kaluuya, a dark-skinned actor most recently seen in “Sicario”

    Glad you mentioned he was in “Sicario”. I really liked his work with Emily Blunt and their on-screen interaction. I hope he gets more projects to star in…who knows maybe even one with Emily Blunt again!

  15. Chris says:

    As a White male, I don’t feel threatened by this movie’s premise, but am very much looking forward to having my thinking challenged by it. I can’t judge the movie until after I’ve seen it, but this review has definitely whetted my appetite. Thought-provoking, race-conscious films have been all-too-rare in the horror genre. This looks like fun.

  16. Joe truth says:

    More anti white trash from hollyweird.

    Imagine a movie where the white guy goes to meet his Mexican girlfriend’s family, and the family hates whites, and then try to off him?

    Or if some Jewish Hasidic girl brings her white goy boyfriend to meet the parents, and the Jewish family tries to kill her goy boyfriend.

    Both films would be seen as bigoted and hateful. They would be called racist or anti Semitic. They would be panned by reviewers no doubt.

    But when white goys are the baddies (as usual) reviewers heap on the PC praise.

    Trust me, I’ve known plenty of white guys that dated Mexican, or black, or Jewish girls, and got the cold shoulder (or worse) from un approving family members on the girls side. I’ve even known of white guys beat up by the brothers of Mexican girls because the brothers didn’t want their sister dating a gringo.

    I myself am married to an Asian women, and I get more than my fair share of dirty looks when going to dinner with her in Asian areas of Southern California.

    • Saw the Sneak Preview, Sun night, followed by a Q & A with the writer & director, Jordan Peele (Key & Peele)! A real ‘rollercoaster ride’!!. It reminded me of viewing the original “Psycho” with a packed audience at the movies! It was wild, scary & fun!

      • David Brown says:

        Well said Joe truth. Entertaining movie up to a point but in reality so facile. As a Brit watching this crap it felt like just another opportunist taking advantage of American black/ white sensitivity. I wish everyone could just move on from it all but sadly they’ll just stir the pot more and make a load of money out of it in the process.Easy target.

  17. Ahmed says:

    I just feel the need to say this…. THIS IS HOW TO DO A BEST MOVIE REVIEW. No spoilers, but just enough information to get you curious. I’m very impressed.

    • Prefab4 says:

      Ahmed, hey: I’m a big Ira Levin fan, and I actually feel like this site blew the story in the first sentence, with its “meets the Stepford Wives” allusion.

  18. Drew Lehmann says:

    better put a big spoiler alert at the top of your review to let everyone know that you’re going to give away everything about the movie. Or just heed the warning of the movie title and “Get Out” of this review.

  19. What’s really funny is the writer of this is exactly the type of annoying, overly PC, liberals are the best most non racist people ever, that this movie is showcasing as awful and he doesn’t seem to realize it. As someone who voted for Trump (but not exactly a Trump supporter I just hate SJWs) I find that very ironic.

    • allenbosh says:

      You should be ashamed to even admit you voted for Trump. Real intelligent blacks like Peele and myself see racist on the liberal side and the conservative side. I think most blacks see it too. Face the facts, whites have perpetrated racism towards the black race since 1619 in this country and with Trump in office, it doesn’t seem to be getting any better.

  20. Kitty says:

    This movie seems so racist. I am mixed and very clearly Afro American, and proud of it. When I met my White fiancee’s family, who are also rural and own a farm, they were sweet and NORMAL. Most people I meet in small towns are NORMAL, even in all white towns. Some people are assholes, or ignorant, sure, but these films pepetuate stereotypes. Why can’t we have an interracial couple in a movie in which no one’s parents care about race?

    • teensotmove says:

      Why does it seem so racist? Do you know your and the racism of this country by whites history? Pretty brutal. I have an interracial daughter and I know the racism I faced raising her with the mother racist family. You are living in lala land thinking that racism doesn’t exist, where everyone is seeing kumbaya. It’s not happening, not now anyways.

      • Michelle says:

        I don’t think he is saying that racism doesn’t exist. It seems like he is saying that it only focuses on the racist people and it would be nice to see some normal people who actually don’t care about race as only seeing racist people perpetuates stereotypes. While it was a very well done movie, it did, in fact, only show the racist white people and their need to control – which could perpetuate the stereotype that all white people are racist and/or want control.

  21. John doe says:

    This is just what america needs more race hate at this rate the hate will never end thanks a lot Hollywood

  22. Vins Harrelson says:

    I am looking forward to seeing this, in spite of this spoiler-ridden review. Jordan Peele, even without his comedic compatriot, Keegan Michael Key, has a sharp sense of humor that causes you to think about what you’re laughing at. (I am going for the laughs, not the spooks, pardon the pun!)

  23. Risean says:

    in which an uneasy black man walking alone in a predominately white suburb recalls the fate of Trayvon Martin…

    I get that this is supposed to be an evocative comment, but have you ever been Sanford? I’m a black woman, with 2 black teenage sons, and we’ve lived in Sanford for 10+ years. Even better, I had family (black) that lived in the same complex where Trayvon was murdered and I used to live in a complex that was a 5 to 10 minute walk away (to this day, I still don’t live far from where that happened).

    At no point has any of my family felt “uneasy” here, not to say that there aren’t issues, because there are and will be for a long time considering that this city has strong roots in racism from its inception. And while there are definitely more white people in this part of the city than in other parts, it is by no means a lily white area. Heck, the elementary school right outside the gated complex where Trayvon was killed is dedicated to a black woman with significant ties in the AA community and, until very recently, a well-respected black man was the principal.

    Just, next time you mention an area, make sure you know a little bit about it first. Facts are beneficial to appearing educated. Alternative Facts, on the other hand, well, you see how that’s currently playing out.

  24. John G. Hill says:

    I guess I’m the idiot, reading a review in Variety which essentially gives away the entire film. I won’t do it again. I thought there was a standard here.

    • mcgwynne says:

      There used to be a standard back in the day when they hired writers instead of PR people who work for the studio. I’ve been in the industry for almost fifty years and have seen both Variety and the Hollywood Reporter go from being business news and box office reports to shills for the indies with commercial graphic ops and no real respect for the actual productions.

      • Peter Debruge says:

        That’s totally unfair. If you’ve been reading Variety that long, you know we used to discuss the entire plot of a film, including the ending. If anything, we’re more spoiler conscious now than ever — and I assure you that the review keeps the movie’s big surprise/reveal under wraps, while discussing what’s already out there via trailers, etc.

  25. BE says:

    I noticed the same thing in the otherwise good review of this film. None of the other black actors (from the live in handyman to the housekeeper..) as so noted in the review are or need to be described as dark/brown or light skinned, so why the young actor playing the lead? Especially as we see his picture is included in the review, furthermore Allison Williams from HBO’s GIRLS (whose work I personally love..) is not described as a “very white girl”, so why again would his complexion need to be made a point of? Why isn’t simply his work credit enough or for that matter then both leads are described as the “black boyfriend” is played by.. and the “white daughter” is played by…

    If its not done for everyone then there should be no need to single anyone out based on their complexion whatever that may be. What could have been a totally thorough and good review was unfortunately disappointing to see that part of this piece aimed at that one actor as intended or not it was unnecessary and felt biased in my opinion.

  26. chelseafung says:

    “The couple are Chris (Daniel Kaluuya, a dark-skinned actor most recently seen in “Sicario”) and Rose (Allison Williams of “Girls”)” –Is the ‘a dark-skinned actor’ specification pertinent to this review?

    • Peter Debruge says:

      Yes, I’m glad you picked up on what detail in my review. Within the African-American community, differences of skin tone mean a great deal, especially in mixed-race dating situations (see MOONLIGHT director Barry Jenkins’ excellent MEDICINE FOR MELANCHOLY). Peele’s an incredibly sharp social critic and he clearly considered this when casting Kaluuya. GET OUT isn’t a PC movie, but I hope it provokes some politically-essential conversations.

      • MaryW says:

        Umm, “Within the African-American community, differences of skin tone mean a great deal, especially in mixed-race dating situations” you might want to step back off this, white guy.

    • Belle says:

      I think so because honestly,you don`t see that many darker skinned actors on screen.They do tend to be lighter skinned.

      • Amelia says:

        Oh, please. I was in a long-term interracial relationship with a dark-skinned black man. Skin tone does matter to many in the black community. And the fact that he was dark-skinned and going to meet the family of his lily-white girlfriend does in the white community. As soon as I saw Daniel on screen, I thought, “Good. Peele ‘went there.'”

    • mcgwynne says:

      Would this be funny if it wasn’t about race? As for the “payback” citation and the following sentence about “all the expendable black actors Hollywood has given us over the years. ” Guess I missed those movies where black people don’t “…make it to the end credits.”

      • Amelia says:

        That was in response to Mary and somehow wound up under Belle’s post.

      • Actually it’s usually less about race and more about gender. Regardless of race males are overwhelmingly killed in horror movies while females are overwhelmingly spared or even (to ridiculous levels) touted as the heroes, even if most females couldn’t fight monsters nearly as big as the ones they are up against. I’m 100% sure a lot more of it has to do with males being disposable than what the race of. the male may be.

      • Peter Debruge says:

        You can start with this one (DEEP BLUE SEA): https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=Om12IKHRego

        When it comes to horror movies, this is one of the genre’s most shameful clichés.

  27. Jennifer Hornsby says:

    Those who make use of the concept of white privilege hold a theory about how privilege works. It is not an abstract theory; but since it concerns systemic injustice and ignorance, it can’t be spelled out simply in a list of facts. It you don’t recognize the concept, then that might be because you have failed, perhaps through your own unwillingness, to understand it.

  28. mcgwynne says:

    Just explain to me and others just how is a person’s “privilege” “blindingly obvious “?
    Very dangerous to lump people into identity groups.
    Look up phrenology and how it got the National Socialists in trouble back the 1930’s Germany.

  29. ROGER says:

    Instead of reflexively kicking out the “white privilege” accusation, why not post something critically analyzing Jared’s post?

  30. Joe truth says:

    Trish,

    Are you if the tribe? If you are, then get lost.

    If you aren’t, then you’re a foolish Shabbos goy.

  31. Jared Nelson says:

    I don’t recognize the concept of “white privilege,” it’s purely an abstract theory. If you’d like to talk actual facts, go ahead.

  32. mcgwynne says:

    Seventeen is NOT a child Medina. Plus he was bigger than Zimmerman so it might be you whose being melodramatic. Trayvon was also the aggressor according to original reports. The entire event was tragic and should not have happened. Sadly the political climate of the era had much to do with both the event and its politicization following that sad day. The rule of law is the way out of Hell.

  33. Medina says:

    Trayvon Martin was defending himself from a man who literally stalked a child and attacked him on the child’s way back from the store who was on the phone with his girlfriend. Had Dre – in the movie – managed to wrestle away from his assailant and bash his skull on the ground he’d still have been the victim.

    This is the exact problem with some people, they justify the murder of a black person by finding every excuse in the book explain away the obvious. And its exactly this “Trayvon deserved it” mentality that sets the solid foundation for the fear many of us have.

  34. Arthur says:

    Peele is a lot more famous and worth more money than Peretti, how exactly is she pitying him? Wow, you’re actually getting physically sick just from hearing about problems that different races have to deal with, you must have quite the frail constitution.

  35. Trish says:

    Good lord, I’m whiter than a ghost, but your white privilege is blindingly obvious

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