As long as there is political unrest in the world, film will always have something to say about it. Last year, something happened that shook up the entire nation; the death of George Floyd. Most people saw it as a motivation to start an uprising that could have quickly gone out of hand, while there were others on the opposite side who thought that there were much worse things to worry about. Judas and the Black Messiah is a film that came at a time when such things were a matter of discussion. It has as big of a voice as the political leaders and the people have; it is political as political can be.
It is easy to see why Marvel’s newest outing ‘Black Panther’ is both a critical and financial success (and not just because it is the eighteenth installment in the still-going-strong Marvel Cinematic Universe). It is the perfect superhero movie for our troubled times; as timely as it is beautiful and thrilling. The inhabitants of the technologically advanced city of Wakanda are not just an ensemble of talented black actors, they are strong characters who hold their own and never back down from a challenge when the time calls for it, yet they are not portrayed as proud, they are as human as we all are, with regrets, challenges, and choices that lead them to where they are. These elements make up the heart of ‘Black Panther’.
A horror movie directed by Jordan Peele about the twisted side of racism should play as a ‘Key and Peele’ sketch made for Youtube. But nope! This was actually released in theaters almost a year after ‘Keanu’ (a ‘Key and Peele’ movie) was released. Whereas, Peele went in front of the camera to give the performance of his life with his comic partner Keegan-Michael Key in ‘Keanu’, here in ‘Get Out’, there is no trace of Peele to be seen. Instead, he is working behind the camera (and writing) to bring us a twist on the usual horror comedy trope and anxiety about meeting your girlfriend’s parents. Alfred Hitchcock may be the master of suspense, but with Jordan Peele’s masterful work behind the camera, he might just bring a new kind of horror to modern audiences.