Us is directed by Jordan Peele and it is described as his new nightmare come to life. In Us, Peele invites us to experience what life would be like if we all had evil, twisted doppelgangers out to get us with red jumpsuits and long golden sheers. This is what unfortunately happens to the Wilson family who thought they were going to have a fun summer vacation. Little did they know. Us stars Lupita Nyong’o, Winston Duke, Shahadi Wright Joseph and Evan Alex.
When it comes to directors everyone has their favourites, it’s usually Tarantino and Nolan. For me, I really only had one favourite director and that was Damien Chazelle, now I have two. Damien Chazelle and Jordan Peele. This man has made a highly respectable name in horror with just two movies. He is bold, creative and in my opinion he is the most exciting person working in Hollywood right now. I love Get Out, it was a movie which hooked me from the very first scene and kept my attention up until the very end. It was a movie I had never seen before, a movie which I had no idea how it could possibly end. Peele managed to replicate that experience with Us.
Us is the only movie I have seen where when it ended, I felt like I had only seen a part of it. I spent hours thinking about the ending and the overall story and themes. This is a movie that demands to be seen more than once. I am going to go see it again this weekend to prepare for my spoiler review. What I love about Us is how ambiguous it is. Peele has said that he doesn’t want to give too many answers, he wants the audience to walk away with their own theories. I like that, movies nowadays give you all the answers and the conversation that follows doesn’t last, if it even starts. With Us, the conversation will last for a while.
The cast does a phenomenal job. Lupita Nyong’o is spectacular as Adelaide and Red. The contrast between them is so apparent and clear. From the voice changes to the physical behaviour, she completely transforms herself. Her scenes with the doppelganger are especially impressive. The entire cast transforms into their counterpart really effectively, Winston Duke gets a lot of the laughs, however he is extremely creepy as his doppelganger. The two kids in this movie are also really great. I really like Shahadi Wright Joseph as the daughter, her role in the family is not one usually seen in horror movies and I really liked that. Evan Alex gets asked to do quite a bit from an acting point of view but just like the others he delivers.
From the beginning till the end, Us is a perfect mixture of horror, tension and comedy. Peele masters these elements as he uses them wisely and in the right amount just like he did in Get Out only in this movie the horror element is played up. Get Out was scary but the loose ends were tied up so to speak, in Us, certainty is never present. This makes the movie unpredictable and incredibly intense. There is a scene which takes place around the halfway point of the movie which perfectly fuses horror and comedy. It was honestly one of the best scenes of the movie for me.
One thing which caught my attention is the constant change of settings. With a movie like this it’s very easy to back yourself into a corner and limit the movie to one or two settings but in the case of Us, the story cleverly puts the characters into different places which make the most out of them. From a house of mirrors, the beach to the eerie Rabbit Hole. The change of places makes for a consistently fresh and exciting pace to the story. I also love how Peele uses history as a tool or a detail for the story. Whether that be American history or African American history.
My favourite thing about this entire movie is how even though it is a horror movie, it also has endless layers of depth and meaning which are never confirmed nor denied. This leaves the door wide open for conversations. The reason why this movie is so popular at the moment is because people are excited to share what they think the movie is about or about a theory they saw. It gets people talking and for a horror movie to do that is beyond impressive. Peele is constantly breaking down walls and I couldn’t be more excited to see what he does next.
Overall Us is a fantastic experience that will leave you thinking and going over it in your head for hours on end. Thanks to it’s stellar cast, iconic concept, dark humor and well balanced scares, Us proves that not only is horror still going on strong, there are still original stories to be told but also that a horror movie of all movies is getting people talking and discussing. Us is a movie that is never defined, there is no fact, no one call tell you what the movie is as a fact. It is open to everyone yet it still feels relatively finished as far as this story goes. It is really exciting to see this new wave of horror wash over us and I can’t wait for what’s to come.