The Oscar nominations are in, and Get Out is nominated for four Academy Awards. The nominations are for Best Picture, Best Actor in a Leading Role, Best Director, and Best Original Screenplay. There is a lot of good competition this year that has people buzzing and, although Get Out is part of the conversation, it has been drowned out in multiple ways.
It was nominated for Best Picture and Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture at the Golden Globes and lost in both categories. It was nominated for Best Performance by a Cast and Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Leading Role at the Screen Actors Guild Awards and lost there, too. So its chances of actually winning don’t look hopeful.
We decided to talk about the seven reasons why the thriller deserves to (almost) sweep at the Oscars, despite it being a long shot for the game-changer.
1. It’s a movie that doesn’t dance around our political climate but confronts it
The Oscars typically try to pick a movie that is great and reflects the times. In a way, many of the Best Picture nominees do. But Get Out does something different when talking about the political climate of today by painting it truthfully. The characters talk about their love for President Obama, yet their racist actions still have horrible consequences for people of color.
This makes the movie very relevant, given America recently had Obama in office, then turned around to elect Donald Trump, a man who made multiple racist statements while campaigning. Get Out is a thriller that not only reflects the horrors of what’s going on right back at us but also forces people to face those horrors.
Many movies are praised for having analogies to the current political climate. But Get Out uses them to explain specific experiences, like being trapped in a racist system through the sunken place. There is a beautiful balance between explicitly talking about the subject matter and allowing the audience to just experience it.
Next: Get Out brought this subgenre to the big screen.
2. It brought Afrofuturism to the mainstream
There was a lot of debate on which genre the movie fits into. But one thing we can’t forget is that it brought Afrofuturism to the big screen. Afrofuturism looks at racism through technology, so the light of photography waking people up and the experiment of taking over black people’s bodies by white people are huge parts of this.
The movie industry has been in great need of more creativity and having people tell stories differently. Get Out did this beautifully by bringing themes that belong to a subgenre to a wider audience, and it will hopefully lead to more creativity and diversity.
Next: The ensemble is truly underrated.
3. The acting is pitch perfect
The horror and thriller genre often get overlooked when it comes to acting. However, everyone in Get Out was perfect when it came to telling such a unique story. The movie has comedic notes along with horror ones, which is a hard thing to balance. Multiple characters are unassuming, then switch to flat-out menacing. Both are convincing, and that shouldn’t be overlooked just because it seems easy.
Daniel Kaluuya is the only one who walked away with an acting nomination, which is bittersweet. The movie hinges on his journey, and he portrayed the rollercoaster beautifully down to his eyes. It’s just a shame more of the cast also aren’t being acknowledged.
Next: It’s a little engine that could.
4. Jordan Peele was successful, despite all odds
Get Out shouldn’t have been a success, according to Hollywood. It’s a horror movie about race, and there is a first-time director behind it who came from comedy and television. It was also a small movie with an estimated budget of $5 million.
Well, all of that didn’t matter because it broke multiple records. It became the highest-grossing original debut with $160 million, breaking The Blair Witch Project‘s previous record, according to Quartz. Jordan Peele is the first black writer-director to have a $100 million film debut, and it’s the third highest grossing R-rated horror movie ever.
Quality and opportunity really do break down barriers, and the industry should applaud that.
Next: The storytelling in Get Out is rare.
5. Original stories full of imagination should be applauded
There seems to be a non-stop discussion of whether adaptations have taken over too much of the market in the film industry. There are numerous comic book and now game adaptations making it to the big screen, and the reasons are understandable.
But another thing that was stacked against Get Out was that it was a completely original story. It’s up against a few other Best Picture nominees in this category that are also the first of their kind. However, certain themes, like Afrofuturism, in this story make it a bit more of a risk to take than the others.
Next: How the movie handles race is risky for general audiences.
6. It’s a story about race that doesn’t let anyone off the hook
Hollywood often tries to tackle race, but it’s mostly written to sugarcoat it. There are tropes known as the “white savior” used in order to make white audiences not feel as bad when they walk away from the story. Get Out was risky because it doesn’t do that at all.
Most of the racist characters believe they aren’t racist at all and painstakingly try to convey that to Chris. But in the end, they do harm black people, and there are no white characters thrown in to try and offset that heartbreaking aspect of the story. Hollywood needs to be more fearless like this when telling these stories.
Next: How many other nominees are being studied?
7. It’s already acknowledged as a film worth studying
It typically takes years for movies to get added to the canon of great film. But people immediately saw the value in Get Out and now you can take a class to study it at UCLA.
Hopefully, this means we’ll get more stories like this and that its effect will last for quite some time.
Follow Nicole Weaver on Twitter @nikkibernice.
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