By Gabrielle Smallwood
Whenever Hollywood has an idea to revolve a movie around race, it tends to focus on a time in the past. It is any time but right this moment. Jordan Peele, making his directorial debut with “Get Out,” was the remarkable indentation we needed in our society.
The movie centers on Chris (Daniel Kaluuya), a black photographer, and his white girlfriend, Rose (Allison Williams). Five months into their relationship, Rose is taking Chris for a trip upstate to meet the parents. He is left apprehensive once a problem occurs: Her parents do not know she is bringing a black man home. Rose is confident and insists that her family will be fine. She reassures him of their liberal status saying, “My dad would have voted for Obama for a third term.”
Trouble starts before even arriving, with the car slamming into a deer and an uncomfortable encounter with a cop who gives Chris a hard time. But with Rose’s privilege, that seems to falter. Her mother, Missy (Catherine Keener) and father, Dean (Bradley Whitford) do not bat an eyelash about his skin color, though Dean consistently drops embarrassing slang to appear more “down.”
Chris starts to notice oddities about the other black people around, such as the maid, Georgina (Betty Gabriel) and the groundskeeper, Walter (Marcus Henderson.) His uneasiness reaches its breaking point at a gathering hosted by the family when he is given the warning to “Get out!” by another black guest, Logan (LaKeith Stanfield.)
Discomfort and fetishism transpire throughout the entire film. It is apparent that black people are auctioned off for their bodies by the highest White bidder. Missy, a psychiatrist and Rose’s mother, forcibly disengages Chris and the other prospects from reality through hypnosis. It forces the person to fall into “the sunken place,” a floating dark abyss, where a piece of you impotently watches White dominance take over your body.
Peele exchanges discomfort with humor in several scenes. Chris’ lively, TSA officer best friend Rod (Lil Rel Howery,) is skeptical about his friend’s trip with warnings for him not to go. After hearing Chris’ experiences with Rose’s family, he crazily (and hilariously) theorizes that they are brainwashing Black people into becoming their sex-slaves. “Get Out” perfectly captures a snip of culturally relevant matters facing America. This social horror film is a must see.