Released March 22, 2019 Universal Pictures
Us; a modern-day horror film by Jordan Peele, topped the box office this weekend grossing $70 million and breaking records for horror and live action films. Peele takes us through the suspenseful and thought provoking life of Adelaide Wilson, played by Lupita Nyong’o.
The movie begins set in 1986, when a young Adelaide visits the Santa Cruz boardwalk with her parents. When her father becomes distracted, she wanders off into a house of mirrors and stumbles upon what appears to be herself, except it wasn’t her reflection. Then, something indescribable happens.
Fast forward to present day, a now older Adelaide reluctantly returns to Santa Cruz for a family vacation with her husband Gabe Wilson (Winston Duke), teenage daughter Zora Wilson (Shahadi Wright) and young son Jason Wilson (Evan Alex). During their day at the beach, a series of coincidences occur hinting that her past could be back to haunt her. When the Wilson family returned to their vacation home, there was a weird family standing in the driveway who look just like them. That’s when sh*t gets real!
Lupita Nyong’o played an amazing role as Adelaide and Red. Her characters were focused, fearless and everything a woman should embody as a mother and/or wife. It was definitely an award worthy performance; not to mention, refreshing to see an all black cast in a horror film.
Watching this movie requires your undivided attention and even then, you may have to see it again. Peele does an amazing job of hiding social issues in plain sight, while also paying homage to classic horror films like Jaws, The Shining and others. I would definitely recommend seeing the movie.
(Stop here if you haven’t seen the movie, spoilers and commentary ahead.)
After seeing this movie, my brain was wrecked with theories, so I did a little research and here’s what I discovered…
Remember the scene at the beach where Jason, who’s wearing a Jaws tee shirt, goes missing and Adelaide runs through the sand screaming his name just like in the movie, Jaws? Or, what about their friends they meet at the beach whose teenage twin daughters act just like the twin girls from the Shining? Did you also see his constant reference to 11:11 or Jeremiah 11:11?In this case, I would suggest you google it and come up with your own outlook based on your own spiritual beliefs.
I believe Peele also features stereo-typical social classes. For example, the untethered represent the lower class whose basic instinct is survival by any means. Adelaide and her family represent the middle class who enjoys some of the luxuries in life, while taking others for granted. But when the time comes, they stick together and fight to survive. The upper class representation are the Wilson’s (white) friends who enjoy the luxuries of life, but lack togetherness, family and basic survival skills.
Peele’s writing is genius in this film to include: numerology/bible verses, socialism, references to other horror films, while also incorporating a twisted and suspenseful story line. After seeing Get Out, and Us, I anticipate seeing future projects from Jordan Peele.