“Get Out” is enjoying a pretty ideal opening weekend. The low budget thriller raked in $30 million in ticket sales, a “Toy Story”-level perfect score on Rotten Tomatoes and Grammy-sweeping artist Chance the Rapper bought every ticket for the film at Chicago’s Chatham Theaters just so people could see it for free. “Get Out” comes from Blumhouse Productions, a rising company behind frugal, sometimes socially-conscious horror movies like “Split” and “Paranormal Activity”.
The long-anticipated horror movie is a nightmarish meet the parents-scenario that’s about American race relations and racism remaining very much alive in liberal enclaves. The story of an interracial couple, Daniel Kaluuya and Allison Williams becomes a genre-bending social commentary. This feat is catapulting writer and director Jordan Peele from “that guy on Comedy Central” to an impressive auteur in the two days since “Get Out” was released.
The brilliance of “Get Out” is in its craftsmanship and social commentary, but it’s far from the first tone-heavy project Jordan Peele’s worked on. Earlier this summer, “Keanu” premiered, a much lighter action movie about Keegan Michael Key and Peele reuniting with their stolen kitten, but Jordan Peele was a co-writer and actor. “Get Out” is his directorial debut for movies, but it’s entirely logical that Peele would transition from comedy to horror, or fuse the two. Both genres rely on tension and the audience’s expectations, it’s what relieves the tension that’s different; in comedy, tension becomes laughter and in horror, tension is eventually rewarded with scares.