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Get Out’s Hidden Messages

A successful movie with a powerful message.

Abbie Jovanovich, Graphic Designer

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Get Out was released the weekend of February 24th and was instantly sold out. The trailers for the movie gave zero indicationsdd to the plot, other than to show it was going to be suspenseful with horror-movie aspects. Even after keeping the plot a complete secret, the movie was incredibly successful, and it’s only been out for two weeks.

Jordan Peele poses at the Emmys, where he’s interviewed about his (then) upcoming project Get Out. Photo credit to splitsider.com.

The movie was directed by known comedian Jordan Peele. This was the first movie he’s ever directed, and it turned out to be a great success. It made $30.5 million dollars the premiere weekend (a huge profit considering the film only cost $4.5 million) (The Wall Street Journal).

But the most shocking thing is that a new black director with an unknown lead character (Daniel Kaluuya, a UK actor who’s mostly known in America for starring in an episode of the Netflix show Black Mirror), starring in a film that is the number one movie in the box office after its first weekend.

The movie, while being equally suspensive, scary, and humorous, touched on real things people deal with today. Throughout the movie, the main character Chris, a black man who was on a weekend family reunion with his white girlfriend Rose’s family, is met with different racial issues real people meet everyday.

When Chris and Rose arrive at her parent’s home, Chris immediately notices things are off. Photo credit to imdb.com.

While Chris’ case ended up being much more life threatening, Jordan Peele wanted to brush on racial issues he sees everyday. In an interview he had with Nerdist, he explains “American history is littered with the bodies of black men jailed, beaten, and killed due to the simple words of a white woman.”

Get Out’s plot starts immediately when the movie begins. The first scene, Peele admits, was meant to echo Trayvon Martin (a black teen shot in a suburban neighborhood in Florida). A black man is seen walking home on the phone with his girlfriend, when a car pulls up and parks along the curb next to him. He ends up getting beaten and taken.

Peele explained in an interview with All Things Considered, “I wanted to represent the fact that what many people may not understand is the fear that a black man has when walking in a white suburb at night is real.” The scene was shot so the audience was in the position to see and feel it, and it definitely worked.

After the movie was released, critics and others have claimed the movie is “anti-white.” Peele addresses this in saying, “This movie is not about the idea that white people are racist and no one else is, or that white people are villains. We all have issues to deal with in regards to race internally” (All Things Considered).

 

If you haven’t seen the movie yet, stop reading.

 

In the movie, Rose invites Chris to stay the weekend with her parents, who happen to live in a very secluded lavish mansion with the nearest neighbors across a lake. Chris makes it clear in the beginning, he’s nervous about going, given that Chris is the first black man Rose has brought home.

Rose’s father tries to make him comfortable by telling him he would have voted for Obama for a third term if he could, but his words are overshadowed by the black help Rose’s parents have on their property. The more Chris interacts with the maid and the landscaper, the more he notices them missing social cues and the clearer it becomes to Chris that something is very wrong.

Rose tries her best to make Chris comfortable during their family reunion. Photo credit to imdb.com.

The rest of Rose’s family arrives, and Chris is immediately unsettled. Each relative meets Chris with a different stereotype (saying they know Tiger Woods, feeling his muscles,  etc). Things get even creepier when Rose and Chris go to take a walk, and Rose’s family stay behind to auction off Chris.

It turns out Rose’s family has been running an organization for generations. Started with her grandfather, Rose’s “family” (outside her immediate family, the “relatives” Chris met earlier were really clients who were seeing how much they liked Chris for his parts) is in charge of roping a black person into their family, auctioning them off for the highest bidder, and then performing a surgery (with the help of hypnosis from Rose’s mother to make the person compliant) to put a majority of the white person’s brain in the black person’s body. Thus far, the operations have been completely successful, with the white person in complete control of the body and the black person in a suppressed place, where they can see and hear everything the body experiences, but have no control.

Sparing some details, Chris manages to get free. As he’s running away, Rose gets a gun and catches up to him with the help of her grandfather, who’s in the body of the landscaper. Chris manages to stop the grandfather, and subdo Rose, when a police car pulls up with it’s lights on.

Chris, who has been subject to so much racism over the past weekend, almost killed many times, hypnotised, almost became a prisoner in his own body, knew he, a black man, would be seen as the oppressor against the white woman dying on the road and the other bodies littered back to the house. He held his hands up and backed away from Rose slowly. The cop ended up being his best friend who had spent days looking for him after they lost contact, but the scene still holds power to how black people, black men, are seen.

There’s a scene before Rose’s betrayal to Chris becomes known, where Chris finds old pictures of Rose and various black people in a shoebox. It’s her and numerous black men, and a black girl, who is actually the maid at the house. You’re led to believe that Rose, a white woman who wouldn’t lie and just didn’t know what she was doing, was also being hypnotized and was being forced to forget these people, which makes her betrayal so much more powerful.

The movie was incredibly powerful and had such an intricate story. For a movie that gave no plot hints in its trailers, and for a new director and lesser-known cast, Get Out has been more than successful in just its first two weeks.

Get Out was truly eye opening. It was equal parts real, scary, and funny. It is an hour and 44 minutes long, and each one will hold you on the edge of your seat. The movie has been given 8/10 stars on IMDB, and 99% on Rotten Tomatoes.  

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6 Comments

6 Responses to “Get Out’s Hidden Messages”

  1. Zoe on March 15th, 2017 10:22 am

    “He also played the best friend “comedic relief” character” actually the character was played by LilRel Howery. Please edit. Jordan Peele is fantastic and wrote AND directed the movie, but did not act in it.

    [Reply]

    Courtney Huhta Reply:

    We fixed it! We apologize for that.

    [Reply]

  2. Nikita on March 16th, 2017 6:12 am

    Jordan Peele was not the friend in the movie. That is another comedian playing that role. Also the guests that attended Rose’s house were not relatives and it wasn’t a family reunion.

    [Reply]

    Courtney Huhta Reply:

    We fixed it! We apologize for that.

    [Reply]

  3. Bessie on March 18th, 2017 11:13 pm

    The best friend is not played by Peele. And I don’t recall anyone touching Chris’s hair, although that is usually a go-to awkward interaction between whites and Blacks

    [Reply]

    Courtney Huhta Reply:

    We fixed it! Sorry about that.

    [Reply]

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