Us

Us ★★★

I was pretty out the loop with new movies in 2019 when this came out so I avoided all the hype and initial discussion, though I really liked Get Out so I should've probably gotten to it earlier. This is an exciting, if a bit more obviously flawed sophmore follow-up on Get Out from Jordan Peele. Hits similar beats while upping the ante, but overall not feeling as totally satisfying.

I really liked the visuals here, lots of clever shots and interestingly staged scenes. Central performances are great, Lupita Nyong'o is killing it and Winston Duke is such a wholesome dad character in this. Its social commentary is less obvious and more ambitious than Get Out, with lots of cool ideas thrown in and mixed. However sometimes a more direct approach can be better off - since despite how clever a lot of this film's writing is, I don't think it fully came together for me.

I liked the beginning of the film a lot, really cool foreshadowing and an ominous mood casting a cloud over the instances of comedy. Then it starts getting crazy with a home invasion scenario that felt a little tired, we've seen it done so many times now and the attempts(?) to be scary here just weren't working. This middle portion of the film had me laughing at points at how absurd yet surprisingly straight-faced it was playing things (like the little kid growling?) - I just wasn't sure if it was working as intended.

It gets more interesting for the latter half of the movie, where it expands its scope in ways I wasn't expecting. Though it puts so much value on its twist, which isn't really all that surprising. Felt a bit like Jordan Peele was really hyping himself up, M Night Shyamalan style, for the ending run - with maybe a little too much exposition which then clashes with the general more understated metaphor and messaging.

But on the whole this is a lot of fun and hardly a disappointment even if I remember Get Out being more immediately gratifying. I feel like Jordan Peele's for sure got plenty more good films in him and I'm excited for whatever's next.

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