Us Review (2019) – SXSW (3/10)

Us Review (2019) - SXSW

Writer-director Jordan Peele has created another marvelous new American horror story in his latest film, Us. Jordan Peele Hosting The Twilight Zone Makes CBS...

When You Meet The Enemy, And It Is ‘Us’

March 21, 20195:00 PM ET

SCOTT TOBIAS

Measure Twice …: Lupita Nyong’o stars in Us, the latest horror film written and directed by Jordan Peele.

There’s so much to admire about Us, Jordan Peele’s muscular follow-up to Get Out, that it’s worth appreciating what Peele does when the ebb-and-flow of horror tension reaches low tide. Many of the most celebrated horror maestros are hailed for their big, atmospheric set-pieces, but getting to those moments can often feel like crude narrative patchwork, the listless verses before a killer chorus. Peele excels in these obligatory sections, where his skills as a sketch comedy writer and pop-culture savant can liven up conversations that we’ve been conditioned to expect as the yadda-yadda bridging to nightfall, when a film can finally uncork some suspense and mayhem.

There’s mayhem aplenty to be uncorked in Us, which is as conceptually messy as Get Out was ruthlessly self-contained, but Peele’s quick evolution into a full-service entertainer dispels any fears of a sophomore slump. He can deftly mix-and-match ideas cherry-picked from past classics — the echoing childhood trauma of Don’t Look Now, the alien doppelgängers of Invasion of the Body Snatchers, the masked home-invasion of The Strangers — but he can also handle the banalities of a family car trip to the beach or underscore a gruesome sequence with the theremin whistle of the Beach Boys’ “Good Vibrations.” He’s actively engaged at every moment, which is especially helpful when the film’s bold abstractions start to wriggle away from it a little.

Where Get Out turned a Stepford Wives premise into a bitterly satirical allegory for what it’s like to be black in America, Us opens up to a broader, vaguer, more suggestive diagnosis of social ills, packaged as a metaphysical shocker where the characters are attacked by versions of themselves. Starting with a flashback in 1986, the film opens with young Adelaide Wilson wandering off from a Santa Cruz boardwalk one stormy summer night and entering a hall of mirrors, where she encounters a child that’s her exact reflection—but not. (Think of the famed mirror sequence with Groucho and Harpo Marx in Duck Soup, only utterly bone-chilling.)

Now a grown-up with a husband (Winston Duke) and two children (Evan Alex and Shahadi Wright Joseph) of her own, Adelaide (Lupita Nyong’o) vacations to a secluded home near Santa Cruz and immediately seizes up with panic, as memories of this past trauma bleed insidiously into the present. Seemingly innocuous visual cues land with such a devastating impact that Adelaide pleads with her husband to split town even before a more tangible threat arrives. But as they’re preparing to leave, another family of four arrives on their driveway, dressed in matching red jumpsuits. They also happen to look exactly like they do, making them literally their own worst enemy.

There’s an explanation for this curious phenomenon — a big one, in fact, connected to a network of tunnels cited in the opening titles — but Peele is asking America herself (the Us or U.S. of the title) to look itself in the mirror and consider the destinies of those invisible millions who share our country, but not always our good fortune. The deeper the film goes into accounting for what’s really happening, the less it holds up under scrutiny, both in the logistics of the doppelgängers’ existence and in the abstract themes Peele appears to be exploring. That’s not as damaging to the film as it sounds, but Us plays better as an intuitive experience than a puzzle box where every question has an answer. Peele would rather tease the imagination than tidy things up.

In that respect, Us is a leap forward for Peele as a director, because so much of what he’s trying to express doesn’t make sense on the page, as Get Out did. In a stunning dual performance as Adelaide and her gravel-voiced other, Lupita Nyong’o carries the psychological complexities of a woman whose identity was shattered by an incident over 30 years earlier and who still gets cut by the shards. What’s happening to her is fundamentally inexplicable and unresolvable, so Peele allows that chasm to open up and swallow the rest of the film whole, like a crack in the earth that portends the apocalypse.

It’s also possible to receive Us simply as a gripping home invasion thriller, with Adelaide and her family squaring off against these uncanny, relentless attackers whose origins and motives are a mystery. Though Peele has made it emphatically clear that Us is a horror film, not a comedy — the film itself makes the case just fine on its own, frankly — he seizes the opportunity to lighten up the tone, whether through a funny gesture in the middle of a skirmish or through the casting of Tim Heidecker and Elisabeth Moss as a bourgeois couple who seem to be staging their own version of Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?. Us is a serious film about the American underclass, those who toil out of sight and out of mind. Us is also a lot of fun.

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Written by top40

Hello Again and Thanks for reading it is I David "Top40" Ellenberger with an update on the status of my lawsuit against Alphabet inc case # 4:20-CV-04877-SVK  and the website and life in general. By now if you regularly visit InternetTop40.com you may have read this section "author info" or Bio. So I am adding to it with more bio and more info. I originally liked the idea of voting on the internet 20-25 years ago when I first got online with WebTV (does anyone remember that?). The technology at that time was not advanced enough to easily be able to vote online or watch videos or much else for that matter but I was hooked and look at what we can do now with videos, IOT, and everything else, but I digress. I started InternetTop40.com about 5 years ago and the user base has been going up steadily ever since. I wanted to be another Facebook, with music and voting and that is all coming together slowly but surely. BTW if you want to help or have any interest please feel free to email me anytime.  Now in my previous Author Info or bio page I made it clear or at least I thought I made it clear, I am personally suing Alphabet inc. in Federal Court for Fraud. I have evidence to prove they are not counting all the pageviews, among other things and defrauding myself and probably millions of other website owners and content creators out of Billions of dollars. So if I wasn't clear or you didn't know it's true I am suing Alphabet inc. in Federal Court for Fraud the case was recently moved from my state of Kentucky to N. California to make it easier for Alphabet inc. to steam roll me or so they think. Needless to say if you are interested and I hope you are you can look the case up online under my name "David Russell Ellenberger" or the case # which is 4:20-CV-04877-SVK.

Now, I want to make it clear to you and everyone that I am not suing Alphabet inc. aka Google for fraud just because I want a million dollars for nothing. I am suing Google for fraud because I think they are committing  a serious crime with worldwide and societal ramifications, it is a  very serious problem.  I am suing Google for fraud because to put it simply the analytics numbers don't add up at least not in my favor or yours, there is something very fishy going on with the Google analytics numbers. Of course Google has an excuse for every one of them but I have reasons and the actual numbers and they don't add up, more about the numbers later. Companies like Google are making Billions of dollars a year in profits telling us data is the most valuable thing and misleading us and misdirecting the media and the world every chance they can.  Now data is valuable and they are making billions in profits seemingly like magic but there is no magic to it just corruption and lies. One thing Alphabet inc. aka Google is really making their money from and that is advertising dollars and they are putting all of this advertising on the websites other people have created. Websites that I have created and  websites you have created and websites millions of others around the world have created websites or content. For example Just writing a text is creating content and that's where Google puts the billions in advertising they receive and keeping most of it for themselves. Yes content others have created and yet somehow they are keeping almost all of these billions for themselves and not distributing it equitably to the real workers the true content creators who actually deserve the advertising monies. Google has made it's billions on the backs of you and me. Think about that for a minute, how can they continue to justify this? They Can't, it has to change.

For example if I were to prevail in the current lawsuit just half of the monies or $20 billion put into a basic account and compounded at 5% annually we could realistically employ over 800,000 people at $24,000 a year, indefinitely.  Sounds unbelievable but its true and if we only employed 400,000 people we could pay them $48,000 a year indefinitely. Its all true. Its simply a matter of having the money and the will to do it. Now is 400,000 people a lot well yes it would be more employees than almost any other company in the world and more than half the population of the entire city of Louisville, Ky.

I David Russell Ellenberger through my website InternetTop40.com am suing Google to try to help right a wrong. A wrong committed by Google that has simply gotten out of hand. Most people may think they can't do anything about it. Nothing can stop Google, the politicians don't care they use all of Googles data to further their own campaigns and line their own pockets while the rest of us keep on creating the content for Google, nothing can be done, this however is not the case, we can do something. The politicians and Alphabet inc. aka Google have done nothing to help society at large other than organize it so they can keep more money in secret and pay off all their buddies with their fraudulently obtained money. It's gotten so bad that the politicians and others in control won't even talk about it, they ignore it and hope it goes away, they won't even try to stop google because it is helping them too much and maybe they are scared of Google or who knows what they may be thinking. But it looks like fraud and it's coming to an end.

I'm telling you we can do something and I David Russell Ellenberger an average citizen Content Creator am saying to you, I'm not scared of Google because I have nothing left to loose.  I David Russell Ellenberger am telling you there is something you too can do, if nothing else, tell all your friends to come to InternetTop40.com aka IT40, believe these words and Create your Content. Further I promise to you and all who read this if I do prevail in my lawsuit against Alphabet Inc. I will use half of any monies I may receive to pay "content creators" a living wage. I pledge to anyone who is reading this, I will use half of any monies I may receive to help those who really do want to work on the internet and create content and tell us what they think. I will use half of any money so you can Get Paid, I want you to get paid for the content you create and get paid everyday and Get Paid to Vote create data and to be able to do this work online and from your home or anywhere in the world you care to be. Because in the words of an ancient scholar Y-O-U are the business Y-O-U are creating all the data, Y-O-U are the content creators and Y-O-U are all that matters.

Now the main thing I want you to take away form this and to know, Alphabet inc. is and has been committing fraud against you, me and everyone who uses the internet. I don't think Google started out to defraud the world it has just degenerated into this endless morass of corruption and fraud and no one seems to care, Well I care and I know you care too.  Sadly Google has been doing this with impunity for years and it is only getting worse. Please don't let them fool you with their lies and obfuscation. Do some research create some content build a website and research the analytics numbers you will find I am right. Google owes you, me and everyone online thousands if not 10's of thousands of dollars for all the data and advertising dollars they have co-opted from you and the rest of the world. So join with me don't use any Google products or file your own lawsuit in federal court against Alphabet inc. I will be glad to help you any way I can and show you how to do it if need be. It will take a sincere effort on your part but it will definitely help your self esteem, society and the world.

Now that's about all I have to say on this subject for now.  I will tell you this if you want more information or you have questions or comments for me, my email is [email protected] Thank you for reading looking and listening and believing in InternetTop40.com Please tell all your friends about us and don't forget to vote Thumbs up or down and refresh your page when your done. oh yeah and those funny old men running for president vote on one of them too or not. One last Thing, I need all the help I can get I am only 1 person but together and with todays technology we can move mountains and reframe society and our world the way we want it to be. Thank you ttyl

 

Murray State (2/10)

Us (4/10)