By: Kelly FitzGerald
[Insert profane exclamation here!*&>] because that’s how good it was.
Get Out is amazing. In fact, I am still shaking. It was disturbing, emotionally confusing, surprising, somewhat true, and utterly insane.
I knew I was in for it after watching only the first twenty minutes or so. The overly friendly attitude of Rose Armitage’s family towards Chris was simply nauseating. The sad part is that I found it to be an accurate (heightened) reflection of the way some white families would truly act towards a black man whom was being introduced as their child’s significant other. I’m actually glad they made this into such a twisted narrative because it really sheds light on how twisted our culture still is. The guests of the Armitage family who visited were no exception, making small talk with Chris about his muscles, physicality, and Tiger Woods. To top it all off, Mr. Armitage asserts that he would have voted for Obama in a third term if he could have. The verbal efforts being made by the family and their guests—to prove that they are not racist—raise the red flag that they are.
The soundtrack was another thing that struck me immensely—the musical selections were eerily perfect. Many horror films and psychological thrillers rely on added sound in establishing a heightened eeriness, but I think selections in Get Out were somewhat unconventional. One moment that stuck with me was when Rose was listening to “(I’ve Had) The Time Of My Life,” while sitting in bed with her Fruit Loops and glass of milk. It was a Tarantino moment for me, reminiscent of the scene in Reservoir Dogs where Mr. Blonde dances to “Stuck In The Middle With You,” mid-killing spree. It’s quirky and disturbing, giving us great insight into the psychotic disasters these characters portray.
The strongest part of this film was the imagery. Anyone who studies film knows that everything is included for some purpose. The deer that the couple hit with their car on the way to the Armitage home was something I kept pondering. The moment when Chris looks up after awakening from his hypnosis, he looks up, and BAM!—there’s the deer head on the wall. Similarly, we connect the dots between the masked driver in the opening scene and the black man who is abducted. The mask shows up in the passenger seat of the Armitage’s car that Chris drives off with at the end. The most important imagery, for me, was the cotton. Perhaps it was obvious to others, but I couldn’t figure out what Chris was thinking when he started pulling the cotton out of the chair he was strapped to. It isn’t until the moment that he pulls it from his ears that you realize his genius. The fact that it was cotton that saved Chris from being enslaved is so unbelievably ironic—as cotton is most commonly associated, historically, with the work of slaves. I’d like to know Peele’s insights on this narrative choice. All the imagery and plot details in this film came full circle by the end—nothing was left hanging. At the same time, however, Get Out left so much to talk about and so much to ponder. That, in my opinion, is great storytelling.
In a nutshell, it’s tea, bingo…and racial terror, as highlighted by The Guardian.