Us

Us

No score for this one, I'll just randomly point out a few things which were the subject of my thoughts. This review is pure details nitpick and has very little interest in discussing the movie overall. It's actually more about its music than movie itself. Beware. And skip to last part of the review if you wish to read my thoughts on ending.

Jordan Peele is a true movie fan, you can tell by how much he try-hards with details here; and without trying to sound accusatory, I'm saying this as someone who appreciates that segment of film-making because it's probably one of the things that I, myself would do too (if I ever happened to direct a movie), BUT I also think it's a pretty amateurish way of creating something, because the end goal here is to make the audience gasp and notice the details and make them think how smart and witty you are as a director for including that (but not really). While it's cool that you have that kid wearing a Jaws t-shirt while wandering beach, at the same time you have a father character which exists purely as a comic relief for some reason, and you never manage to write him properly as anything other than that. He was the weakest character by far. Even the neighbors had more depth. When you commit to cramming everything with random details you tend to forget about more important things (a character in this case). I guess I wanted this film to be more serious with its approach. For the entirety of its run-time it existed purely in some limbo between a home invasion slasher horror and raunchy comedy while trying to shoehorn this 'message' plot or whatever critique of America Peele wanted to let us know and think about. 'We are Americans' line was pretty dull, it took me out of movie momentarily. Also I'm not even going to address all the finger pointing Pelee does any further, as I just don't care for that aspect.

Using 'N.W.A. - Fuck The Police' is so unsuitable for that scene, even though I know majority did like it, I thought it was lazy and made solely for the audience to have a laugh or think how brilliant it was, while having zero emotional impact and simultaneously breaking the flow of that scene for me. Although 'Good Vibrations' was not a bad choice for that particular murder scene, it had no visible on screen chemistry with what was happening. The last time I genuinely thought a horror movie had a brilliant chemistry between a scene and a song was in You're Next (2011) when this one song was used in an opening murder sequence, and then later on when the good guys run to neighbors house looking for help this song called 'Looking for the Magic' by Dwight Twilley is still playing on repeat (from the first scene), and you don't even have to see the scene at that point, you can practically close your eyes and envision what was going to happen, and you would be totally right, because the song made it so obvious that everyone here is already dead, and there is no help to be provided, it's only further despair that awaits. That's how you connect a song with a scene and make it work. Or you can just be Quentin Tarantino and attach a random track to any scene and make it work, I guess.

I'm sitting here, pondering, what is it that makes some music tracks so tethered to their respective movie scenes. E.g. I recalled a 'Confusion' remix by New Order from the first Blade movie, Pulp Fiction's 'You Can Never Tell', or 'Stuck In The Middle With You' from Reservoir Dogs, heck, even Rick Ross' '1000 Coffins' and 2Pac's 'Unchained' from Django, which in theory were so out of place in that era were somehow well tempered for what was being showcased on the screen that it didn't bother me. Big props to whoever had the idea of using Luniz's 'I Got 5 On It' though, that was smart, even if the scene was corny itself.

Enough with the music, now onto something that actually bothers me. Movie starts as a typical slasher and is plagued by a decent amount of horror tropes that come with it. Like, for example, running to neighbors/friends house for help when you actually don't live in an isolated area (as shown), while knowing who your enemies are and what they are capable of, why not run as far as you can to make a decent gap, and then look for help. It was pretty obvious that super-fast-kid-from-the-underground-on-steroids is gonna catch up with them, sigh. This bothered me since Halloween (1978) when Laurie escaped from Michael to the house across the street (from one house to another basically) when instead she could've literally sprinted of anywhere else, in any other direction and she would be way safer than running from a killer into a closed space. And he was chasing her as a priority target anyway, so that movie was always kinda wack to me.
I mean, sure, 99% slashers would look idiotic if you were to analyse them like this, but it always manages to annoy me to no end, so I had to point that out, too.

The ending plot twist or whatever is actually really good. I didn't think there was gonna be one, for that matter. I didn't mind it, and it's nice that Peele resorted to it, instead of some happy-go-lucky finish which many probably expected. I understand growing to like Lupita's character over the duration of movie and being cheated on what you think happened beforehand, seeing main character struggle to survive , and then win through all adversities, while saving her loved ones, and then all that just to find out that it was she who was the ‘bad one’ from the beginning, and that 'evil' won from the start. Basically being disappointed by it, naturally, and that it didn't turn out as you had hoped to, but despite all that, it doesn't make its ending a bad one, it just makes it the one you didn't expect or want to. To say it's a bad ending is just lying to yourself; these are the same type of people who think Gone Girl ending is bad. The bedroom scene where Lupita's character confronts her husband and confesses what happened in 'her' childhood while facing window and with her back turned to him is amazing because it ties directly into mirror room scene and into ending twist. And the expression on Lupita's son face was priceless in that ending scene, really good facial expression by that young actor.

As of now, I like it a bit more than Get Out. Patiently waiting for what this man does next, hopefully with less fingers pointing this time.

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