Written & Directed by Jordan Peele
Produced by Jason Blum, Edward H. Hamm Jr., Sean McKittrick and Jordan Peele
Caleb Landry Jones
Cinematography by Toby Oliver
Release date: February 24, 2017 (United States)
Summary: When Chris (Daniel Kaluuya) goes home with his white girlfriend Rose (Allison Williams), he is apprehensive as she hasn't told her parents that he is black. Once they get there things turn creepy.
Review: The brilliance of this film is that it captures that "black face in a white space" feeling and manages to turn into what it is—a horror show. Ok it might not in reality be a horror show, but as depicted in most of the film, it can get it a bit—odd.
It's not often you get to see black folk at the center of a horror movie that doesn't involve voodoo or something like that, but this film does—while also weaving in issues of race. In other words, Chris' blackness. It just doesn’t deal with it in the way you think. Not in an overt way. Everything is dealt with as it is in life—with subtlety.
Before Chris and Rose even get to the parents house they have to deal with Chris' blackness in a simple incident that deals with it in a very real way. As soon as the couple gets to her parents house things become creepy as hell, especially as Chris meets the black employees at the parents home. The parents are played to perfection by Bradley Whitford and Catherine Keener as is their creepy ass employees played by Marcus Henderson and Betty Gabriel. Things continue to descend into creepiness as his girlfriend's brother (Caleb Landry Jones) shows up to the family dinner and seems more fascinated with Chris than her Obama loving father. The whole time there you can feel that there’s something creepy underfoot and none of it good.
After a creepy ass first day and night, things only get creepier at the annual get together Rose’s parents have the next day with their white friends. The party scenes expertly depicts that "black face in a white space" feeling and what's it like to bite your tongue when a white person doesn't say something outright racist, but is definitely culturally insensitive.
The film does a great job at depicting everything in a creepy and surreal way especially through the performances of the cast. Every single one of the cast listed above knock their performances out of the park. Without giving anything away, they played their roles perfectly in accordance with the story. When everything is revealed, and it is, you’re still left guessing what’s going to happen until the end.
Great job by Writer/Director Jordan Peele, in his directorial debut, for maintaining the clever ambiguity of the story throughout. What makes this film great is that it is so layered with creepiness and racial undertones you really don't know what's going on—until you do.
I intentionally left a lot of things in my review vague because the mystery of the story is one of the best parts. For those of you who have seen the movie below is a great slideshow. I figured most of these out, but it's still a cool addendum to the film.
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