In a tweet shared by Megan Greenwell (@megreenwell) with an attached excerpt from the book, The Idiot, the idea of The Dumbo Effect is explained. “Even the bullies, the ones who despised and tormented the weak and the ugly, were rooting against Dumbo’s tormentors.”
The tweet was shared with a connection to Get Out. Predominantly white audience members who are unconscious of the message in Get Out will root for Chris as if they haven’t been a part of the oppression their whole life. Others will fail to associate themes in the movie to themes in real life - to the ways they speak - and continue to overlook racism.
The subtleties of this movie are what make it engaging and effective - reflecting the subtleties of systemic racism as it exists today. Instead of solely jump scares (although there are plenty from Georgina), this movie achieves the status of true horror thanks to its ominous and fateful premise. Get Out requires you to take notes during the movie so you can make connections after and relate it to the world around you; If you blink twice, you might miss it. Discrimination is perpetuated in society in ways that, if you aren’t looking for it, can be completely swept under the rug. It’s vernacular thrown around, comparing people to mold and to deer that “need to be eradicated.” It’s Chris using cotton to save his life - when he’s been in the sunken place, grappling for help for so long.
Get Out presents very real mindsets coming from leftists who, in the movie, try to cover up their (deadly) prejudice with their support for Obama. Jordan Peele has discussed how part of the motivation for this film was to tackle the idea that racism has ended because Obama was elected. Hiding behind a leftist front is just as severe as claiming “it’s the way you were raised.” with no intent to grow in a positive direction. The most thrilling part of the movie was going home and realizing what every detail meant in relation to the theme and making up my own theories; When we saw Chris looking through his lens but never taking a photo of what was going on at the house, I believe it was meant to illustrate his own perception of the events that could never really be understood by the other guests. Even later, a man who appreciates his work is totally blind - unable to see Chris’ photography for what it is. This relates back to the way leftists, right-wing, and anyone in between will be told the past or present of black people and assume they understand. When they can never truly know the realities for themselves, because they haven't lived it.
In an interview with Fox 5, Jordan Peele noted how he wanted to create a movie that you had to watch twice. A satirical thriller with every decision resulting in a seed planted for discussion and analysis. The party scene is one widely discussed in interviews with the cast - and rightfully so. Daniel Kaluuya eloquently describes how well-meaning people will try to talk to a black person about “black things.” They may think they’re being friendly and won’t know that their approaches are received as isolating to the person listening. Because they aren’t being spoken to as an individual but, as the color of their skin. We don’t live in a post-racial world because we aren’t even post-racist. Both terms are elusive without even a beginning, without the spotlight on artworks such as Get Out. A film such as this one will live on for ages as it is so masterfully pieced together. It is built to make you pay attention not only for the 2 hours of screenplay but, for every hour of life. Change begins with people, the people are the power.
The conversation sparked by Peele’s first movie is both timely and necessary. Its much deserved success of passing the $100M mark at the box office has only furthered the commentary of where we stand as a society. 2017 has brought celebration for art pieces directed by people of color, starring people of color, and addressing the racism faced by people of color. The carefully placed whispers of this film have been heard by people across the world as clearly as mumbles could be heard in a Whisper Gallery. Get Out not only displays themes in a movie but, themes in real life that need the same attention to detail that Peele captures.
article by: sydney bradford
visuals by: Get Out and @megreenwell on Twitter