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Winston Duke, Shahadi Wright Joseph, Evan Alex and Lupita Nyong’o in 'Us'.
Winston Duke, Shahadi Wright Joseph, Evan Alex and Lupita Nyong’o in 'Us'.
Photo: Universal Pictures




4/5 Stars


Haunted by an unexplainable and unresolved trauma from her past and compounded by a string of eerie coincidences, Adelaide feels her paranoia elevate to high-alert as she grows increasingly certain that something bad is going to befall her family. After spending a tense beach day with their friends, the Tylers, Adelaide and her family return to their vacation home. When darkness falls, the Wilsons discover the silhouette of four figures holding hands as they stand in the driveway—their own doppelgängers.


Stemming from the idea that we are our own worst enemy, Jordan Peele's Us is as terrifying and psychologically incisive as his Oscar-winning debut feature, Get Out.

Set in the present day, Adelaide Wilson (Lupita Nyong'o) returns to her childhood home with her husband Gabe (Winston Duke) and her two children Zora (Shahadi Wright Joseph) and Jason (Evan Alex) for a relaxing family vacation.

But from the moment the family arrive at their beach-side holiday house, Adelaide, who is still haunted by events that occurred when she was briefly separated from her parents as a child, can't shake off the feeling that something bad is going to happen to her family.

Paranoid, and getting increasingly more anxious Adelaide tells Gabe about what she experienced during the chilling moments she was presumed missing - so many years ago.

It's evident that over the years Adelaide has tried to move past the horror she witnessed as a child, but when she returns to the place where she was confronted by her worst nightmare, it's clear her past continues to haunt the present.  

The family's night of horror begins when they come face-to-face with their evil doppelgängers, who have only one mission: To wipe out the entire Wilson family.  

Us is terrifying in the "traditional horror" sense with lots of violence and gore, but the deeper themes are intelligent and well thought-out.

And despite the horrific imagery, Us isn't short of laughs, and the humour is timed perfectly yet still feels true to the horror genre.

There are multiple layers to Us, you can sit back and simply enjoy the thriller with your popcorn and Coke and gasp at the truly terrifying scenes, but beneath the surface, the movie looks at much deeper themes of self-reflection.

The family relationships in Us feel genuine and the funny moments and quirks feel true to the characters.

The actors' ability to portray the same character in two different ways is excellent, especially in the way the characters move.   

The characters and their doppelgängers' differences in mannerism is a treat to watch on-screen, especially when we learn more about the history of the doubles and we have more context. 

Aside from the wonderful cinematography, the score and contrast between the loudness and softness of classical and modern music is brilliant. And the way the music enhances the characters' movement is breath-taking to watch and looks like poetry in motion.

Packed with dramatic twists and turns, weeks after having left the cinema you'll still be thinking about who we are as human beings and confronting our biggest fears.



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