(This Is Not) US, (This Is) US: A Look At The New Jordan Peele Film

Never in my life has a movie trailer given me a chill, so I had to make it to the theatre to see US.   Now, it doesn’t take a lot to get me to go the theatre considering they have recliners and Slurpees but whatever, that’s not the point.  This movie was dope.  I loved horror movies as a kid, and anything with monsters, I ate all that shit up.  Then I got older and realized watching people die horrifically ain’t all it’s cracked up to be (unless you’re killed by The Predator, a Xenomorph, The Terminator or Freddy Krueger). US brought it back to good old fashioned clean horror fun… Ok, it wasn’t that clean but it was a hell of a lot of fun!

The movie focuses on a family that goes to their beach house and gets terrorized by doppelgängers.  There’s a lot more to it than that obviously, and the movie takes you for a bit of a spin, sort of like Cabin In The Woods did. It’s just without all the cool monsters, underground offering pits, and evil Sigourney Weavers. But trust me when I say it takes you for a bit of a spin.       

The acting was pretty on point throughout.  The mother, played by Lupita Nyong’o, who you may know from 12 Years a Slave and Black Panther, was wonderful, but she really shined as the “shadow” version of herself. At one point, she captures the essence of hatred she feels towards her “real world self” and it’s chilling, to say the least.  Winston Duke, also from The Black Panther and Avengers: Infinity War, played the father in a likable, yet formulaic “healthy father figure” kind of way, scripted with all the worst dad jokes you can think of.  The children were great as well but the most impressive was the son, played by Evan Alex (he has yet to star in any other major roles but I hope to see him again).  Here, Evan shined playing the “shadow” version of himself VS. his “real world self.” I wanted a longer cat and mouse scene with him but I still left happy.  It really showed the talent of these actors watching them portray themselves in different mindsets

Now,  I do have kind of a weak stomach for sadistic violence but due to my internet access at the right age, I’ve seen everything and it does take quite a bit to faze me.  I was a little worried about what I was about to witness when the dopples‘ weapon of choice were scissors though, but there weren’t too many scenes that made me cringe.  Sorry folks, just good ol’ fashioned off camera stabbings and suspense.  That made the movie better anyway.  It was hoping you are smart enough to know what happens when you’re stabbed through the hand with scissors and not having you focus on over-the-top violence gave the film* a chance to be more about the story. (*note: I believe if you write, produce, and direct a movie, it’s entitled to the term film as opposed to “movie.”)

I gotta give props to Jordan Peele, this is his second horror/suspense flick that was well received but he doesn’t get the crown for Master of Suspense yet.  We’ll have to see how his Twilight Zone series pans out as well as his next few movies too.  Just remember, M. Night Shammalamma ding dong doggy bone had two good first films as well and we all know what came after Unbreakable

Would I watch this movie again? Maybe one day. I’d buy it though. Am I glad I watched this movie? Most definitely. It brought me back to that horror feeling I loved as a kid, and I love feeling nostalgic. Should you watch this movie?  Obviously yo, especially if you like horror movies with decent acting, well done original stories, and fight scenes set to a remix of “I Got 5 On It” you never knew you wanted to hear.

4/5  Rated Kane