Monday, March 6, 2017

"Get Out" Won't Get Out of My Mind

Sometimes I enjoy movies in the moment.

However, the truly good movies are the ones I continue to ponder days, weeks, and months after I see them. Moonlight has been like that. I continue to think about how artfully the struggles of coming of age were told. While I enjoyed Hidden Figures in the moment, I have not thought about it much since. After I saw Loving, I found an archive of Life magazine that told the story of the Lovings, an interracial couple from 1966 Virginia in the film. I was reminded about how important photography can be as a storytelling medium, not merely a blip of memory. My wife and I saw The Lobster last summer, and we still talk about how wonderfully bizarre and socially astute it was.

I cannot imagine that the recent release "Get Out" will hang on until the next round of award nominations 8 months later. But this movie matters, and I will cheer if this film is able to hang on until next year's awards. I'm not much for the horror genre, but this story is perfectly tense and adequately repulsive with a good suspension of disbelief. Jordan Peele offers surgically-placed comic relief and does not betray his comedy roots. But all of these things are the mediators for Peele's framing of racial and societal issues that brought to mind Fahrenheit 451.

As a recent guest on the comedic news quiz show "Wait Wait Don't Tell Me," Host Peter Sagal posed a hypothetical question of white response to the Peele's film, "O God, do I say those things?"

Peele replied not-so-tongue-in-cheek, "The answer is yes. Yes, you do."

I believe I have avoided spoilers here. I write today because I continue to have discussions with a congregation member about this film 4 days later. Get Out has become part of my continuing quest to hear, read, watch, and tell a good story.

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