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Synopsis: Set in present day along the iconic Northern California coastline, Adelaide Wilson, a woman returning to her beachside childhood home with her husband, Gabe, and their two children for an idyllic summer getaway. After spending a tense beach day with their friends, Adelaide and her family return to their vacation home. When darkness falls, the Wilsons discover the silhouette of four figures holding hands as they stand in the driveway. US pits an endearing American family against a terrifying and uncanny opponent: doppelgängers of themselves. (Universal Pictures)
Starring: Lupita Nyong’o, Winston Duke, and Elisabeth Moss
Writer: Jordan Peele
Director: Jordan Peele
Rating: R (United States)
Running Time: 116mins
After the release of Get Out, writer/director Jordan Peele has set quite the high bar for himself. For his second film, Us, he goes back to horror to tell a story with arguably less social commentary than Get Out but remains centered around a set of African-American characters. Anyone who has seen any of the film’s trailers or any of the film’s promotional material pretty much know the premise. For those for who haven’t, the film is about a family known as the Wilsons. While on vacation, the family are faced with doppelgangers of themselves.
One of the more engaging aspects of the film is how is skirts multiple genre lines. The Wilsons were an ordinary, relatable family with the usual dysfunction. They were fun to watch together. The story would then become a cat and mouse game between the Wilsons and their doppelgangers as their intentions were not exactly the best. The story was leave you on the edge of your seat with some great camerawork and a haunting score while several hilarious moments helped break up the tension. Compared to Get Out, this film is funnier but the balance as a whole won’t be for everyone.
In terms of the acting, this film would ask more of its actors as they would each have to play multiple roles. Thankfully, the actors all excelled in each playing two distinct characters. The most noticeable of them was of course Nyong’o as Adelaide, the matriarch of the Wilson family. Nyong’o shows the most range here as Adelaide would have a compelling arc over the course of the film all while playing a completely different character from Adelaide and pretty much any other character she has played, letting it loose as her doppelganger.
Overall, Us is another achievement in Jordan Peele’s repertoire. Both equally thrilling and hilarious, the film skirts the genre line with ease. Peele once again proves his mastery of the horror genre by creating another unique cinematic experience and definitely displays his directing chops. The family dynamic was engaging and the acting exceptional, Nyong’o was superb. Get Out was hard to top and this may indeed surpass it.