If you haven’t seen Get Out yet, I’m not quite sure what you’re waiting for. This movie that has already grossed over $130 Million (mind you, it was created on a $4.5 million budget) speaks for itself. Get Out is a horror movie unlike any you’ve ever seen before! It will have you in your feelings regardless of race, creed, gender or your feelings towards horror movies. I was very careful about the media (articles, social media memes, press releases, etc) I took in prior to watching it so that I could have as fresh of an opinion and experience as possible. So be warned: MILD SPOILER ALERT.
Reaction One: Aw Hell
The movie opens up with a lot of imagery. Before you even meet the characters, you first meet Chris’ art work, apartment and get an introduction to who you will be dealing with. Then you meet Chris and Rose, an average looking interracial couple that you’ve honestly seen walking down the street before. They can both be seen as generally attractive and have a banter that you appreciate when in a relationship. Soon enough we are plagued with the question that sits with us throughout the movie:
“Do your parents know that I’m black?”
When Rose responds, it triggered that oh too familiar feeling of otherness. We (people of color) have grown accustomed to trying to ‘prep’ people for us before we enter a space. Whether it’s meeting the parents or going on an interview, the idea that we are probably not what they are expecting is a constant reminder of who we are not. As a black woman I’m ready with the “Oh Hell No” at the tip of my tongue, because time and time again we have watched the reactions of white families when a person of color steps into the scene. That uncomfortable space where people are not only physically adjusting themselves but also mentally adjusting themselves has already started to spin its web. The twist here is that unlike movies like ‘Guess Who’, which is a comedy where a black daughter brings a white man home to meet her family, there is no danger associated with bringing a white man home. There may be questions of fetishims and disapproval, but never fear of the possibility that their family history may wield some ugly dirty secrets about their treatment of black people not too long ago.
Reaction Two: Hell Yeah
For me, the ‘Hell Yeah’ moment began when we were introduced to Rod. Chris’s best friend/roll dog. You know that Rod is about that life and that he will tell you the truth regardless of what you think. AND he will still be right by your side when you need it. Rod is every black person’s response to ‘if you ever got locked up who would you call to bail you out’ #GetYouARod. Once Rod is introduced, we know that we have someone that will state the obvious to Chris (even if it’s sometimes over exaggerated) and support his suspicions that can often be completely missed by someone that has never had to deal with subtle hints of prejudice, fetishism or racism. Once Rod comes on board I was finally like “HELL YEAH Chris that’s weird”, and glad that Rod was able to agree with me and actually tell him.
Reaction Three: FINALLY!
If you have read this far, and still haven’t seen the movie, I won’t ruin it for you. The last 10-15 minutes of the movie will have you clapping, yelling and gasping at the screen experiencing events that you probably have never seen before. After going through this journey to white suburbia in upstate NY with Chris: aware that he is uncomfortable, aware of his blackness and aware of the manipulation that is apparent throughout the movie, we are rooting for him to win, succeed and prosper. To trust in his instincts the first time around and not wait for other people (Rose) to be on his side. It takes a lot of strength to fully exist and appreciate your space and who you allow in and out of it. So at the end of the movie, if you are not here for every moment, it may be time to reflect on why it’s making you uncomfortable. We (black people) have been subjected to watch time and time again another slave movie of people being hanged, whipped, raped and mistreated so Get Out felt like a good ‘flip the switch’ moment.
Not So Final thoughts:
This movie was unlike any that I’ve ever seen. I suggest everyone sees it and talks about it openly and honestly with people of all races, genders, etc. There are so many different viewpoints and discussions that can and need to happen ranging from interracial dating to microaggressions and fetishims and the very real ‘sunken place’. There are sooo many feels. The more I reflected on the movie, the cast, and the director, I began to think about the oreo effect and how in a way this movie can be a tribute to it. If you don’t know what I mean when I say ‘the oreo effect’ think about any time either you’ve heard or said something amongst the lines of “You’re not really black; you’re like an oreo: black on the outside white on the inside; they aren’t those types black people”, ring any bells? The idea of a black body being okay as long as it’s infused with white consciousness is a very real issue and fight especially when that mindset is forced upon you by your surroundings. I believe that Jordan Peele found that ‘oreo moment’ and truly put it on blast.
Have you seen Get Out? Let us know what you think!
Three women going through life.