I wanted to see Get Out from the moment it, well, got out, followed by all those not so interesting, angry and hateful comments and articles about how it’s anti-white and pro racism and such. Honestly, I get really disappointed when I see those kinds of things out there, especially before the movie comes out, and especially coming from horror fans. I am researching horror genre in an academic context, and I’m always excited about smth new in horror genre, but let’s be realistic for a moment here: do we as a society, and more importantly, as individuals, have to disect every work of art only to get our comments and opinions out there in the dark public sphere even though they are completely unfounded and plain old crass? Do we really crave that much for our 15 mins under the spotlight, no matter the consequences? Since when have we become social media puppets and stopped enjoying the genre that we all love and cherish so much (I do mean horror, yes)?
I’ve noticed that this kind of treatment sometimes puts me off from watching a good movie, not because I get under the influence of these opinions out there but because those opinions and comments suck the last will to enjoy any kind of movie out of me. And I really love horror!
Get Out follows an African American ( because we are not allowed to say black anymore, as it is not politically correct in this post racism era of ours where we should be above it all) guy named Chris Washington (a white connotation hidden over here, some might say) who goes to spend the weekend with his white girlfriend and her liberal white family. The atmosphere is quite unsettling from the moment they arrive to their destination, and Chris starts to notice some strange things happening in and around the house. There is a series of teasers regarding racial stereotypes, which makes the whole viewing experience even more unsettling, especially when we start experiencing Chris’ own confusion about the whole situation. Throughout the film, we as viewers have a choice: to see everything just 1) black and white, which most of the people embraced with such vigour and criticism, but no one seemed to notice that in between every black and white there is always that 2) gray area that tells a whole different story, a story about human nature, the monstrosity of it all, at which point it really doesn’t matter if your skin is black or white or any other shade of human, or if you’re a woman or a man. The director Jordan Peele tackled all his experiences, social issues, cultural differences and suburban fears in contemporary America perfectly and with just the right amount of comic relief (a practice commonly used in Grand Guignol, a 19th century French theatre of horror, where in one night of entertainment there would be an exchange of horror and comedy in order to confuse, scare and amaze the audiences), but, whether that was his intention or not, he also revealed the dark side of human nature in all its glory, a recurrent theme in many horror films that reminds us of the horrors of the real world that we live in, and the frailty of our own lives.
Also, don’t forget that this is one of the rare horror films where we end up with a final boy in the end, and not the final girl 🙂 I bet Carol Clover, one of my favorite theoreticians of the genre, would have something to say about that!
So, I would suggest to stop overthinking everything and to enjoy the twists and turns that our favorite genre, horror, has in store for us in the future. Even Gavin Mcinnes over at Rebel Media agrees with me: Get Out is not racist 🙂