Director: Jordan Peele
Writer/s: Jordan Peele
Starring: Lupita Nyong’o, Winston Duke, Shahadi Wright Joseph, Evan Alex, and more.
Jordan Peele has officially made his return to the director’s chair for his next film “Us”. The mad genius brings to the table a horror film inspired by many others that have come before. The trailers have had audiences shook. The concept have had mega-fans (such as myself) just giddy for the full product. To put it simply, the hype is real. I was ecstatic to finally get my eyes on this film and witness what would be the next film to challenge its viewers from the mind of Jordan Peele. So here is my review of “Us”.
“A family’s serenity turns to chaos when a group of doppelgängers begins to terrorize them.”
It is safe to say that Jordan Peele has delivered yet another film that has the world talking. His second round in the director chair has provided film fans with a suspenseful horror film that leaves just about everyone thinking for hours on end once the credits have begun to roll. Personally, I am still cooking over “Us”. It is a blend of multiple genres and I thoroughly enjoyed each one as they came to fruition. As labeled, “Us” is a horror movie. A suspense-filled horror film. As I once again repeat myself like a broken record, remember, there are multiple sub-genres of horror. When I say this is a horror film, they does not mean jump scare horror. While that is not the exact genre, there are still plenty of scare-inducing scenes to catch the jumpy viewers off guard.
Next to the horror and thriller vibes of “Us”, I also would label this film as an excellent dark comedy. Without spoiling any scenes, there are simply some moments that are set within absolutely morbid scenarios yet there are lines and actions that are downright hilarious. One moment, I found myself heavily invested in the high-tension scenes only to be genuinely laughing the very next moment. While many of the actors within “Us” had some comedic moments, Winston Duke easily had the lead in regards to the most comedic moments. Even with all this said, one would think that comedy of this caliber would distract an audience from the horror vibes. Impressively enough, the film effortlessly blends the two elements together, in my opinion. I personally would credit Peele’s extensive history in dark comedy with his show, “Key & Peele”, which shared similar themes and concepts as “Us”.
Performance wise, “Us” is the real deal. First and foremost, Miss Lupita Nyong’o. Lupita is an absolute wrecking ball when it comes to her performances as Adelaide and Red. As Adelaide, we see an honest, caring, and very cautious woman. Gentle and alert. We see a real woman simply trying to make the best out of a family vacation turned upside down where she then goes into mama bear mode. On the flip side, we get the character “Red” from Lupita. Red is the mirror of Adelaide. While she looks just like her, we receive a violent and sinister character. Lupita is unbelievable as Red. She is chilling, terrifying, and haunting. Her entire squad is, actually. But in regards to Lupita, unbelievable and I applaud her.
As I just said, this entire cast is stellar. Lupita, Winston Duke, Shahadi Wright Joseph, and Evan Alex as the main family and the counter family are fantastic on both sides of the coin. Winston Duke brings to the table an everyday dad just trying to have a good time with his family. The dad jokes are set to 100 in here and they almost always got me laughing to some range. But jokes aside, Winston Duke delivered a unique flavor of dark comedy to “Us” and this flair is a cornerstone of the film.
Shahadi Wright Joseph and Evan Alex play the kids to Winston Duke and Lupita Nyong’o. These two are incredible as well. As the trend goes, the two deliver chilling and unsettling performances as the evil versions of themselves while the real versions are survivors. Again, all around, this cast is quite fantastic.
As Jordan Peele did with “Get Out”, he does so again with “Us” but not as outright. The story of this film is quite ambiguous and in many different ways than just the true story itself. There are so many different aspects of this film that can be broken down into multiple meanings and ultimately prove as symbolism to something in today’s society. While the surface of the film proves to be a terror themed horror film, the networks within the film prove to be something much more. From the colors used, to the verbiage, to the names, and/or to the events and actions used. Everything can have a completely different meaning, you just have to dig a little deeper. It is no wonder that Peele is taking over the next imagining of “The Twilight Zone” because “Get Out” and “Us” are essentially Twilight Zone episodes on LSD.
As I was expecting, Jordan Peele’s second run in the director’s chair did not disappoint. While I was left confused and wanting answers by the time the credits began to roll, it did not interfere with me receiving this film favorably. On a terror scale, “Us” hit a home run. Taking influence from films like “The Shining”, “It Follows”, and “The Strangers”. Peele picked all the right models to gain inspiration from. In Peele fashion, “Us” is a multi-layered film that begs multiple watches and careful study. While there is plenty to enjoy from a casual watching viewpoint. Other film fans have their plates full with the ambiguous “Us”. Prepare yourself as you sit down for “Us”. It is truly a unique ride.
- Quite possibly one of my favorite dark comedy’s in recent history.
- The evil version of the family has downright terrifying mannerisms. Absolutely loved them.
- Epic horror score
- My rating is held back to a 9, like “Get Out” was, on grounds of some things just being far too reaching. Even for the fantastical scale that the films present themselves on.
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