Updated: Oct 9, 2022
It's interesting to me how often horror and comedy overlap. How many famous actors got their start in lower budget horror movies? You have William Shatner, Kevin Bacon, Johnny Depp, Jennifer Anniston the list goes on and on. What happens less often is a comedy actor becoming a famous horror director. So let's talk about Jordan's Peele's latest movie...
The 349th Review
Turning to the latest from Jordan Peele. If you don't remember, I loved Get Out and was not a fan of Us. I was curious about Nope and then after talking to a coworker I was intrigued, so I decided to give it a shot. One thing about Peele his movies are vastly different from each other. Get Out was psychological, Us was more of a slasher and Nope is all about spectacle. His first two are more subdued when it comes to visuals but this one the visuals are larger than life and I agree with Peele that this movie was made for the big screen.
This is the part of the review where I usually say a little about the plot without giving too much away, but I don't really want to do that, because the mystery is the best part. From the trailers we know it's an alien attack but there's so much more going on that I really don't know where to begin to start talking about it. If I do, I know I'll have to start backtracking to explain something else and this video would run on way too long. I'm not saying it's convoluted, because it's not, it just covers a lot of ground. So let's just go with the IMDB synopsis, well most of it, I refuse to use the word "resident."
"The people of a lonely gulch in inland California bear witness to an uncanny and chilling discovery." That should do!As an aside, the setting for this movie is gorgeous.
Another reason I don't want to talk about the plot too much is that the movie is the most fun when you and the characters don't know what's happening. Everything they try, every attempt, every breakthrough is kind of exhilarating and I think it's the best part of the movie. When you get answers, it's still really good, but I think it loses a bit of its spark. But there are still great and disturbing moments between that and the finale. When you find out what happens to those at the wrong place at the wrong time, it's horrifying to think about.
The movie follows a pretty small group of characters but the ones who matter are really good. My favorite, and I'm assuming most people's favorites, was the all-too-eager tech guy Angel. If you ever need a wingman, this is your guy. He plays off the leads, Em and Otis Jr. so well, it's really a treat when they're all on screen together. He's the comic relief character but he's capable and brave and at no point does the character wander into buffoon territory like so many plucky sidekicks tend to end up.
I want to talk more about this movie because it's been swimming around in my head and I think that's exactly what Jordan Peele wants. The end happens but it's not tied up in a neat little package, there's still a whole lot of unanswered questions and it's by design. They're the type of questions that have you looking forward to any follow ups in the future as opposed to getting mad once the credits roll.
The movie does lose a bit of steam one the baddie makes its first major reveal but it picks it back up for a wild final act that makes up for it. While most of the movie is more of a mystery, you only get hints of something dashing in and out clouds, but it's ready for its closeup by the end. The final confrontation is really something else and outside of one character suddenly coming down with a fatal case of Plot Induced Stupidity, it's pretty awesome. It's unique, it's clever, it's jaw dropping and a lot of fun. For the longest time while watching the word in my head that kept popping up was "cool." This is a cool movie.