Get Out has become a sleeper hit. Made for less than $5m, it’s gone from strength to strength in the American box office, making Jordan Peele the first black writer-director to earn more than $100 million with a debut feature. Because of its dark, comedic edge and sharp racial commentary, I’ve been dying to watch it ever since I stumbled across the trailer on YouTube last year. In fact, I’ve already lined myself up two dates (first to enjoy and argue with my sister about over a Core Sundae afterwards, second to analyse by myself), because horror is best enjoyed with a barrage of people just as terrified as you are.
When you enter a screening, it’s a bit like you’re placing yourself in one of those sensory deprivation tanks. You’re taken out of the familiar surroundings of your living room or bedroom. You’re removed from the distraction of the dog wanting to be fed or the urge to idly scroll through Facebook. You’re perfectly primed to be so scared, you’ll have to go to sleep with several lights on and a knife under your pillow.
Surround sound has the wondrous ability to set the hairs on the back of your neck standing up with the faintest of knocks to the left, a scuttling that sweeps from one side of the room to the next, a soft voice singing in the distance. Every sound in a horror film is chosen to manipulate your emotional response to a scene. It’s fantastic.
Judging by the reviews, Get Out is a genuinely terrifying experience – but it adds something into the mix that other horrors don't. Turning old tropes on their heads, it looks set to remind us that racism is more terrifying than any supernatural fear. To quote Ed Williamson from Den of Geek, “As a thinkpiece it provokes, as a genre film it’s winningly tense, and as a debut it’s about as assured, well-judged and original as you’re likely to see all year.” So do it justice and make sure you see it the way Jordan Peele intended it to be seen.
Get times and tickets for Get Out.