Backed by Blumhouse Productions, who’ve recently presented the very original The Visit and Split, Get Out is an energising and intense thriller from writer/director Jordan Peele with his debut feature. You may know Peele best from the Comedy Central series Key and Peele, if you don’t go find it, and so this switch into thriller/horror is very exciting indeed.
The film sets us up within the relationship between Chris, played by Brit Daniel Kaluuya, a young African-American photographer and his white girlfriend Rose, portrayed by Allison Williams who you’ll know best from HBO’s Girls. It’s their first visit to her family home upstate and out in the secluded countryside. Rose wants to introduce him to the family but he’s very aware that she hasn’t told her family that he’s black but she reassures him that they’ll love him and ‘aren’t racists’.
After we head out on the weekend getaway, we arrive and meet parents Dean (an excellent Bradley Whitford) and Missy (the wonderful Catherine Keener) who appear to go out of their way to welcome him but as events start to unravel, and ‘home help’ is met, it feels like there’s something very unusual happening behind the façade. Chris is a nice guy though and believes it’s their nervous nature that’s making things odd but after meeting two people who work for the family, it’s clear something else is definitely going on.
Peele’s film doesn’t hide behind the natural, straightforward thoughts of those unintentional, uncomfortable first ‘moments’ of a family meeting someone’s new partner and that feeling is very much out in the open. This is what’s unique and interesting about Get Out, as well as numerous other moments that come up early on in the movie. In truth, it’s one of those films that’s difficult to talk about too much without giving a lot away, but for me it’s a unique experience that’s unlike anything I’ve seen in a while. Every twist and turn changes your mind of what’s happening and even with big reveals and insights, it’s still exciting to see where you’re taken next. There’s an important scene involved hypnosis that even reminded me of the Scarlett Johansson movie Under The Skin, in both suggestion and escapism from the real world.
For an original thriller, Get Out is right up there because it not only highlights situations that some white people pretend doesn’t happen, it also features top performances from Kaluuya as Chris who’s the essence of the movie throughout. As Rose’s mother, Keener who gets to a take on a character that I’ve not seen her do before, and is excellent as always. On the Blu-ray extras, the Q&A reveals that Peele felt there was a gap in the market that’s never been plugged regarding racism and the way people are treated, and this couldn’t be truer.
Get Out also features one of the best finales in ages as well and doesn’t mess around, in fact it’s very, very satisfying. Everything you think you’d want to happen, if you were there, happens, it’s great and thankfully avoids all the usual stretching out of a particular scenario by getting on with it. Peele has set the bar high with a captivating and intense thriller, so get on it now.