Movie Reviews NG

Movie Review – US

Synopsis –

Accompanied by her husband, son and daughter, Adelaide Wilson returns to the beachfront home where she grew up as a child. Haunted by a traumatic experience from the past, Adelaide grows increasingly concerned that something bad is going to happen. Her worst fears soon become a reality when four masked strangers descend upon the house, forcing the Wilsons into a fight for survival. When the masks come off, the family is horrified to learn that each attacker takes the appearance of one of them.

Release date: 29 March 2019 (Nigeria)

Director: Jordan Peele

Budget: 20 million USD

Producers: Jordan Peele, Jason Blum, Sean McKittrick, Ian Cooper

Production companies: Monkeypaw Productions, Blumhouse Productions

Review

If there is any genre of movie that I detest, it has to be Horror.

Like many people who don’t like to be scared unnecessarily, (as if life in itself doesn’t have enough scary scenarios), having to review a movie like ‘US’, meant inevitably watching it.

“US” is a psychological mystery thriller, and is the second movie by award winning actor, writer and filmmaker; Jordan Peele, “GET OUT” being his first.

It follows the life of an African American family of four on a family summer vacation, when Adelaide’s intuition of evil (Adelaide, played by Lupita Nyong’o), comes to pass, as they are confronted by their own doppelgangers –  who are bent on killing them.

Even though we later find out in the movie that this horror is not just exclusive to the family, the movie is still centred around Lupita’s character from childhood till present day, and Lupita did an exceptional job in portraying both the terrified Adelaide and her menacing doppelganger.

She definitely steals the show in this flick, as her fear is contagious.

Her son’s acting, not as much.

The first stand out for me was the excellent choice of music used. The music composer, Michael Abel did an exceptional job in handpicking songs which capture horror, urbanity and the sophistication of the movie. It is spooky yet exciting, while also giving the movie a distinct haunting temperature.

Most horror movies start with white people going where they are not supposed to, just for the fun of it, but this movie espoused another narrative, which saw these Black characters going to the scariest places for family, which is a refreshing thing.

The climax of the movie occurs when Adelaide faces her doppelganger in a duel for their very lives – because only one of them can survive –  using the trademark scissors. The sleekness and appropriateness of the scene is unnerving as the ‘evil’ Adelaide spends less energy but delivers the worst stabs, cuts and attacks. This is possible because she knows how her companion thinks.

There is a subtle psychological puzzle in the scene, about why we humans don’t often win the war against ourselves.

Suffice to say, at the end of the day, in my opinion, the movie falls short in only two aspects.

The first being that it was not a very scary movie.

Like as a non-horror movie fan, I had prepared to run out of the cinema hall in fear. But/and apart from one or two major scares, I enjoyed the movie with satisfying laughter instead. This was probably intentional, as the movie rating is PG 13.

The second reason being that; towards the end of the movie I realized that in the bigger picture laid the ‘trying to take over the world “cliché storyline, by a somewhat zombie race.

The only difference here was that the zombies were doppelgangers, and were out to kill only their targets, plus the doppelgangers were also mindless, but with purpose and precision. Having said that, it won’t stop me from doing the needful if I see my lookalike though.

Asides the 2 reasons I feel/felt the movie felt short in, the movie is definitely a classic in Jordan’s resume, is really interesting, as well as deep. So if you are looking for a non-extreme horror movie, US is just appropriate and also comes highly recommended.

PS: horror movies are famed for dramatic endings, and trust me, the end of US (see what I did there) will mess with you in ways you will never see coming.

Anyway, have you seen US?

What did you think about it?

Rating – ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

8/10

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