With his second feature, Jordan Peele had a tough act to follow, and the smartest thing about Us is that it doesn’t try to repeat the formula of Get Out. The film, like its predecessor, is centered around a metaphor, but that metaphor is more open-ended, harder to pin down. Peele’s imagery carries a wealth of associations; the movie doesn’t encourage the sort of straight-ahead reading that Get Out did. This ambiguity is something of a blessing and a curse. On the one hand, Us isn’t a funny, cathartic crowd-pleaser like Peele’s debut. (Where the audience with whom I saw Get Out cheered or screamed at every twist, the crowd at the theater where I saw Us on opening night was far more subdued.) On the other, it achieves an insidious, lingering effect that’s rarer in the horror genre. CONTINUE READING