By Marc W. Polite
(Alert: some spoilers appear in this review. Read at your own risk.)
Greetings, everyone. This weekend, I decided to see Jordan Peele’s latest film “NOPE”. The trailer had me intrigued. As for the actual movie experience, the most I can say without spoiling it too much… was that it was very weird. Nope tells the story of a family of Black horse trainers who experience contact with an extraterrestrial being. What makes the premise interesting, is that these particular horse trainers were the descendants of the Black jockey who tested motion in a picture. Starring Daniel Kaluyya and Keke Palmer, they have to survive a hostile presence, and find a way to obtain visual proof of its existence. The technology that the visitor used scrambled electronics, and avoided digital capture.
I leave room in this review to say that there are some parts that I likely don’t get. Sometimes, when you view a film once, the intent is not apparent. With that said, I didn’t quite see the connection between the story of Gordy, the chimp that flipped out and killed people on a set. While jarring, the purpose of it being there was sort of a headscratcher. Second, there were some parts that were a bit on the long side.
Nope is a science fiction horror story. It blends both genres, and fear not, there is definitely no “white savior” trope present in this film. In fact, its almost the opposite. One character tried to steal credit for evidence for himself and ended up getting got by the alien. At that part.. you say… yeah, can definitely see that happening.
During the film, this family figures out that its not a ship, and the disappearances of people are not abductions, but they’re being eaten. The evidence of this occurring, is a scene that will stay in your head for a while.
Nope is an interesting film, with a few confusing parts in there. It in some ways, takes away from the film, but if you are into horror with a side of science fiction, you might like this one. I can’t say that you’ll definitely like it, as this film is very different from “Us” or “Get Out” By comparison, even the twists/sideplots in “Us” are straight forward in comparison to “Nope”. It’s already a blockbuster, and will be sure to garner discussion for those who do see it. With the popular consciousness around the images coming from the James Webb telescope, lets just hope that a group of these aren’t headed our way from the deepest reaches of space. If you see something weird in the sky.. don’t worry.. it’s just a weather balloon.