Jordan Peele: 'Us'

First of all, it is impossible to talk about "Us" without spoiling any part of the movie. So as a disclaimer, there are spoilers in this review!

"Us" is Jordan Peele's second film that follows the summer beach vacation of a family of four. Lupita Nyong'o, who plays the main character, Adelaide, is a bit reluctant to visit her childhood beach home because of a tragic experience in one of the theme parks by the beach. Despite her hesitation to go to the beach, her husband, Gabe, convinces her to go. As they make their way to the beach, odd coincidences and flashbacks start occurring for Adelaide, that spiral once nighttime approaches and a family appears on their driveway. 

Jordan Peele does an amazing job of knowing how to make a film absolutely terrifying and also knowing the appropriate times for comedic relief. Although the movie is marketed as a horror film, the overarching message poses a much deeper insight into the sociopolitics in the United States ('Us') today. Peele uses the doppelgangers to show how capitalism has essentially made people into two different characters. The nice, abiding citizen is shown on the outside, but the true inner cynicism is fighting to get out. In the film, you see how each character is striving to be someone different. Zora, the younger daughter, doesn't want to be the track runner her parents want her to be. Jason, the son, is constantly wearing a mask to hide his face. Even the family friend, Kitty, talks about getting plastic surgery to change who she is. 

Towards the end of the movie, you see Adelaide travel to the underground which are the tunnels that are referred to during the beginning of the movie. The underground represents the dark and depressing place that the doppelgangers come from but also showcases the divide in social class in society. Adelaide's doppelganger briefly touches on this during the beginning of the movie, when she said that all she had to play with were sharp, cold rocks, while Adelaide was up above playing with soft toys. Throughout the movie, you see this switch in entering social classes and Adelaide's doppelganger leads her to where she grew up. The divide or 'redlining' of social classes is further solidified as you see the doppelgangers in their red suits joining hands across America. 

Overall, "Us" was an amazing movie that not only had you on the edge of your seats but also constantly thinking of what each action means. The actors in the movie play contrasting roles so incredibly well. Jordan Peele has definitely become a favorite director of mine with these two movies and maybe he'll be yours after watching "Us" too. 

Photo Credit: 1,2