It really is wonderful when a film can catch you off guard. I knew absolutely nothing about Get Out before I watched it. I hadn’t seen any trailers, read any reviews or spoken to anyone who had an opinion on it. There won’t be any spoilers in this review, but if you’re planning on watching Get Out and want the full unadulterated viewing experience, I would recommend that you stop reading on. There is a sinister intensity to the film from the get go. A creepy atmosphere of uncertainty and anxiety. It’s very much a film about racial tension and modern race relations and just when you think you’ve got the plot sussed out, the film goes in an entirely different direction.
Chris and Rose are a young couple who have been dating for 5 months. With a trip to visit Rose’s parents arranged Chris is concerned about how they will respond to the relationship. He’s worried that they won’t be completely supportive of their daughter dating a black man. After a rather archetypal “jump scare” en-route to Rose’s parents, the film then starts to get really tense as the family seem to be weirdly overly enthusiastic and interested in Chris. The unease escalates as we discover that the family have 2 black servants working for them who appear to be mentally unstable. From there the film descends even further into different realms of strange after the house is used to host a big party for (mainly) upper classed / elderley white folk.
Firstly, the performances in Get Out are terrific across the board. It really is a performance driven piece. For a horror film, there isn’t a great amount of violence or gore, and the real frights come from the interactions between characters. Daniel Kaluuya is excellent in the central role and for a British actor puts on one of the best American accents I’ve heard in a while.
There’s a wonderful balance of comedy, drama, surrealism and horror that really put Get Out on a much higher plateau than most modern horror films, or indeed most modern films in general. As a directorial debut for Jordan Peele it’s a genuinely scary and intelligent film and I eagerly anticipate his future work. It’s my favourite film of the year so far and I have a feeling it may be at the end of the year also.