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FILM REVIEW: US (15) ESP RATING: 4/5

This lad has got some talent.

After mesmerising cinema-goers with his spectacular horror, intertwined with social commentary – Get Out – two years ago, highly-acclaimed writer/director Jordan Peele’s follow up is arguably just as ingenious.

It probably won’t be everyone’s cup-of-tea as it leans towards being more art house than commercial horror films, but this is a movie for true cinema fans – clever, thought-provoking and superbly-crafted.

In order to get away from their busy lives, the Wilson family – mother Adelaide (12 Years a Slave Oscar-winner and Star Wars: The Force Awakens star Lupita Nyong’o), father Gabe (Nyong’o’s Black Panther co-star Winston Duke), daughter Zora (Shahadi Wright Joseph) and son Jason (Evan Alex) – take a vacation to California’s Santa Cruz.

But when four mysterious strangers break into Adelaide’s childhood home where they’re staying, the family are shocked to find that the ‘doppelganger’ intruders look and talk just like them – only with grotesque appearances.

It initially hints at being something like 2008’s The Strangers, but then evolves into something much more than that. Any further explanation will give away how this horror-thriller tale unravels – suffice to say it’s tense, sometimes creepy, and always intriguing.

With a fantastic central performance from Nyong’o – who sensationally plays two versions of herself, including her bone-chillingly-voiced doppelganger called Red – and a subtle slovenly comedy element added by Duke, then filmmaker Peele has gone ‘2 and 0’ with his first two movies.

Throw in a terrific score and laudable soundtrack – done to the backdrop of hip-hop I Got 5 On It by Luniz – then it all comes together to be another truly stupendously-devised genre piece from Peele.

Even if Us isn’t your bag, props still has to be given to him for providing something uniquely different to your regular Hollywood horror fare.

And the real test? Will you be talking about it on your way home? Yep you will. 

ESP Rating: 4/5

Gavin Miller

 

Cast: Lupita Nyong’o, Winston Duke, Shahadi Wright Joseph, Evan Alex, Tim Heidecker, Elisabeth Moss, Madison Curry, Cali Sheldon, Noelle Sheldon, Anna Diop & Yahya Abdul-Mateen Ii

Running Time: 1 Hr 56 Mins

Director: Jordan Peele

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Legend

Written by ESP Magazine

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