Guest Blogger: Justin Head
Justin Head is a senior at the University of Central Missouri majoring in Digital Media Production with an emphasis in audio. He is currently taking an interest in Radio Production, Audio for Digital Cinema, and also studio engineering. He enjoys going to concerts with friends, listening to new music, and traveling across the country.
The Sunken Place
When it comes to Social Justice Films a horror movie might not come to mind when thinking of one. Films like Do the Right Thing, Crash, The Shawshank Redemption, and Children of Men will come to mind when thinking of one. ‘Get Out’ is not your typical horror film and Social Justice Movie. It goes through the life of an African American male dating a white female in America.
Throughout this horror film the main character Chris notices something is off while visiting is white girlfriend’s parents in the woods. One of the first things he notices is that they have black housekeepers which remind him of slavery. Chris’ tries to go outsides for a cigarette and he finds one of the housekeepers charging at him and then runs away very furiously and he thinks it’s weird. Once Chris’ is back inside he has a talk with his girlfriend’s mother while sipping some tea. His girlfriend’s mother makes Chris open up to her by telling her about the day that his mother passed away while hypnotizing him and taking him into the ‘Sunken Place’. Chris wakes up the next morning thinking that it was all a dream but in actuality it was real.
The next day at his girlfriend’s parents’ house there were people over there for some sort of gathering. Everyone wanted to meet Chris and asked him questions that they typically wouldn’t ask your everyday white male. Director Jordan Peele wanted the audience to see the racism through Chris’ eyes “It was very important to me to just get the entire audience in touch in some way with the fears inherent in being black in this country. Part of being black in this country, and I presume being any minority, is constantly being told that … we’re seeing racism where there just isn’t racism”. Peele portrayed the subtle racism beautifully throughout this film and in this film the scariest thing was racism instead of someone being physically attacked.
As of right now we all live in a country where race relations are a topic of discussion throughout homes and cities and the timing of this movie coming out was also planned. When asked if the Black Lives Matter movement and also videos of police shooting unarmed black men, which opened the eyes of many white people to fears held by black men inform this movie, Jordan Peele stated “It did. I was making the movie in that period when Trayvon Martin was killed. What originally started as a movie to combat the lie that America had become post-racial became a movie where the cat is out of bag, and now we’re having this conversation. I realized I had to shift it a little bit. It became less about trying to create wokeness and more about trying to offer us a hero out of this turmoil, to offer escape and joy”.
At the end of this film there is a scene where Chris is trying to get away from this house after there are several dead bodies on the property. While Chris is trying to get away you see police lights flash and instantly your heart drops because normally in situations like this the black male gets arrested. Luckily in the end the person who saved him was his friend and everything turned out well.