Reviews

‘Nope’ Review – Complex Horror with a Dash of Popcorn

Jordan Peele goes big with Nope but keeps true to his multilayered style, delivering a horror film with a lot to think about.

Daniel Kaluuya plays OJ Haywood, a Hollywood horse wrangler and trainer who reluctantly takes on the family business after his father’s strange death. Alongside his sister, the boisterous Emerald Haywood, played by Keke Palmer, and their electronics department store acquaintance, Angel (Brandon Perea), OJ sets out to uncover the mystery of the strange object flying by his ranch and hiding in the clouds – an object more commonly known as a UFO, or since recently, a UAP (unidentified aerial phenomenon). OJ and his crew discover something beyond their imagination as they attempt to capture it on film to become famous.

Like Peele’s past films, Get Out (2017) and Us (2019), there is much to unpack here. While Nope has a lot of mainstream horror movie thrills, there is a lot more to it. From themes of animal mistreatment in the industry to talent mistreatment in the industry, to capitalism and the pursuit of fame, the film’s ability to deliver a unique experience depending on its viewer is remarkable, with each audience member taking something different from it. It’s an impressive feat, but it can also be frustrating to figure out what the director is trying to tell you.

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For those just along for the ride, there’s a lot to enjoy. The performances, characters, cinematography and sound design are top-notch. Sound especially has a huge part to play in telling this story, with an unsettling score keeping you on the edge of your seat. The film’s pacing could have been improved, as it starts off slow and lingers for a long time before picking up the pace in its second half. It’s a risk that some viewers may have tuned out by that point, but those with patience are rewarded.

The beauty of Nope is in its intelligent script and excellent production. Peele’s thoughtful approach is a blessing for anyone looking for more than a typical popcorn horror film, but dumbing it down a bit wouldn’t have hurt either.

Fun Fact:

Jordan Peele said he wrote the script “at a time when we were a little bit worried about the future of cinema. So the first thing I knew is I wanted to create a spectacle. I wanted to create something that the audience would have to come see.”

Nope
Story
80
Characters
80
Performances
85
Direction
90
Entertainment Value
80
Directed By
Jordan Peele
Starring
Daniel Kaluuya
Keke Palmer
Brandon Perea
Steven Yeun
Michael Wincott
83
1589 posts

About author
Loves producing content as much as consuming it. Deserted Island Movie Collection: The films of Quentin Tarantino. Best Movie Snack: Nachos.
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