When I walked out of Get Out, I felt like I’d seen a pretty good horror movie. Sure, it relied on some plot devices I didn’t care for (ahem *hypnosis* ahem). It had some slow parts that I kinda thought could’ve moved faster. Still, the movie has an undeniable gut punch at the end that turns a typical horror movie trope on its head. Then I started thinking about some of the other parts of the movie that didn’t make sense to me – like the one character who does midnight sprints, the mysterious bingo game, the way a character eats dry cereal while drinking milk. Then you start putting together the meanings of those scenes. Then you start seeing meaning in other scenes and your brain starts exploring the potential significance of loads of different characters and events in the movie. Then you realize every frigging moment in this movie is smartly written. Go see it now and you’ll be talking about it for hours.
Get Out is actually very meta about its imagery. The hero of the movie is an African-American character visiting his girlfriend’s parents who spends much of the movie politely overlooking or charitably interpreting others’ racist comments. He’s never quite sure if he’s seeing something racist, or just clumsily insensitive, or simply projecting his own insecurities. Watching the movie is much the same experience. You wonder if characters are being racist, or sinister, or both. You’re never quite sure how to interpret events and whether he has anything to be concerned about. But once you start seeing racial imagery or connecting the dots of the plot, you start second guessing every aspect of the movie. Does this character reflect the condescending nature of certain modern movies or am I just imagining things? Why is that one character so obsessed with “bucks?” Why is that other one holding a lacrosse stick? Was that one sequence deliberately filmed to resemble a modern slave auction? The movie gives you a lot to room to explore.
You need to go see Get Out right now because you have to see this movie twice. Once you can let go over worrying about the plot and just look for other details. Each conversation has subtext. Each event has significance. This movie is deep. There’s the surface level story that’s interesting enough. There’s the secret plot going on that you understand later (but the pieces are all in plain sight from the beginning). Then there’s the underlying racial themes that creep through the entire movie, sometimes just at the periphery. Sometimes they’re so subtle that you’re not even sure if you really saw them or if it’s all in your imagination.
So go see Get Out. There’s a ton to unpack. Go see it and take your friends so that you’ll have someone to talk to about what you saw. There’s a lot to talk about. Go see it and when you’re walking out you might first think that you saw a pretty good horror movie with some silly parts and a terrific finale. Then you’ll start thinking about it and wondering about what the meaning different scenes were. Then you’ll realize you’ve seen the smartest, deepest, most fearless horror movie to come out in years.