Get Out

Film still courtesy Universal Pictures.

Jordan Peele’s Get Out is the most trenchant studio release in years, a slow-building, often hilarious horror thriller built upon a dead-serious idea: that a black man walking alone through white suburbs is in as much danger as any slasher-flick teenager. Peele opens with that image, showing us, in a long and tense single take, a young man making his way down a sidewalk at night, studying the interchangeable homes for an address. A car eases up behind him, moving too slowly, and the revelation — a sick joke you might choke on as you laugh — is that Get Out needs none of the phantasmagoric trappings of its genre to terrify. What’s the usual restless spirit or chainsaw maniac got on a paranoid white dude with a concealed carry?

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