Individuality. Each of us is born with slightly different characteristics than our neighbor. The things that make each of us different also help to define the person we become. Imagine, however, looking across the yard and witnessing versions of yourself looking back at you. But those versions, although similar, behave nothing like you. In the film Us, we’ll find out who or what those bodies are and what they are doing.
Adelaide Wilson (Lupita Nyong’o) has a history with the boardwalk and the beach in Santa Cruz. As a child, Adelaide got lost in a house of mirrors. As she looked in the mirror, the image staring back at her was her own — or was it?
Now, years later, Adelaide is a mom, and her husband Gabe (Winston Duke) and children Zora and Jason are near the fateful beach that haunts her past. Through some prodding and poking, she heads back to that beach, and when her son goes missing, the pain and memories flood to the surface.
Though they quickly find Jason, the family soon is mired in a standoff with their doppelgängers outside of their beach house. And discovering them is just the beginning. Who are they, and what do they want?
Writer/director Jordan Peele has once again crafted a film that got under my skin. With Get Out, he took a very real look at race relations in the country with the backdrop of a horror film and moments of comedy. Now, in Us, Peele looks at much of our inner soul. In crafting these copies of us, he shows what a soul can do to develop the person who we are today.
And yes, there are plenty of scares in this production. From the initial meeting of these strange creatures all the way through to the wry smiles before the film concludes, the doppelgängers make us uneasy and a bit bothered.
Nyong’o brings her A game to this offering and proves she is a force to be reckoned with, easily gliding back and forth between her dual roles as Adelaide and the alter ego of Red. She’s good and bad, strong and scared, and an all-around amazing actress who this film does not work without.
Us has all that I look for in a horror film. I want to get scared in my mind more than anything else, and Peele is successful at this yet again. Don’t look now, it’s you — or is it? They may actually be you, just not you. (See the movie — that line will make a lot more sense when you do.)
Us is available On Demand and on DVD beginning June 18. Check your cable system for availability