US is about Adelaide Wilson (Lupita Nyong’o) and her husband (Winston Duke), son (Evan Alex), and daughter (Shahadi Wright Joseph) on vacation at their summer home in Santa Cruz. This is where Adelaide had a traumatic experience as a child. She gradually becomes more nervous that something bad will happen. Eventually four masked strangers crash their vacation and are revealed to be the family’s dopplegangers. Leading the Wilson’s to fight for survival.
Jordan Peele’s second entry in the horror genre is excellent. He found a way to balance comedy and suspense, while paying homage to classic horror movies. Like finding resourceful ways to escape situations and taking place during the families vacation. Even the technical aspects were great in helping build emotions, to be more precise the lighting, score, and sound. The lighting was great with aspects such as showing just enough of the dopplegangers so you can recognize them as so, but not too much to make them feel less eerie. However as the film progresses and we learn more about the dopplegangers the lighting gradually becomes the same as the families. The score was great because it was a mix of orchestral and hiphop. Each was either used to help build emotions or for comedic relief.
Us is also packed with symbolism and hints at what’s to come next. The biggest symbolism is the scissors and how they represent duality, or 2 parts of a whole. They are the weapon of choice by the tethered as their means to become untethered. Another symbol representing duality are the rabbits. Jordan Peele stated in an interview that they represent duality to him because he is terrified of them yet still think they are cute. He said that their ears also look similar to scissors, referring back to the other symbol of duality. Rabbits also represent rebirth and stand for the tethered’s new life they are attempting to achieve.
I thoroughly enjoyed Us. So much as that I would say it’s probably my new favorite thriller. It contains some of my favorite aspects in movies; comedy, suspense, a good score, and the right amount of weird. These aspects lead to one of my initial thoughts leaving the theater, that it felt as if I had just watched a 2 hour long Key and Peele skit. If you have yet to see Us, I highly recommend you get out there and do.