Get Out

A year late, right? Summary, in case you’re as far behind the curve as I am: A mixed race 20-somethings couple visits the lady’s white family’s estate out in the boondocks (or, as you call it when you’re rich, “by the lake”), and the dude feels less comfortable / more out of place with every passing hour.  Especially once the annual reunion gathering thingy kicks into gear. I wish I could say that the year of knowledge that Get Out existed and of the largely untouched niche it occupied was the reason I found it so predictable, but that’s not it. The truth is, the plot developments I guessed as the movie progressed, I would have been able to guess last February if I’d seen it then at the drive-in, as God intended.

The good news is, that’s not really a flaw of the movie. When you are writing a horror movie[1] as social commentary, it is understood that you amplify the fear you are exploring. And (he said, without meaning to appropriate anyone’s experience so much as simply to agree with the portrayal here) the black man’s fear of being the outsider / his fear of the white man broadly in general is not a genre that has been explored particularly thoroughly. Anger, displacement, revenge fantasies? Sure, since the heady blaxploitation days of the 1970s. But actual fear? Not so much.

What makes me sad is that the kind of people who see nothing wrong with being afraid of walking through the so-called ‘hood will probably not ever have seen this, and would probably roll their eyes at how over the top ridiculous the movie is, if they did see it. Like I said: over the top is the point, and it doesn’t detract from very real fear. It just casts a light upon it, to make it easier to see.

Also, though, the scene with the flashing cop car lights was by far the most frightening-to-me thing that happened, and there’s nothing exaggerative in that scene at all.

[1] I’m not sure this properly is a horror movie, and my tag reflects this, but it’s certainly close enough to go on with.

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