The last two weeks, anywhere you went on the internet there would be people talking about ‘Get Out’. What’s so special about this thriller? Well the director, Jordan Peele, is a black man. ‘Get Out’ is like no other ‘horror’ film, because well it isn’t one in the traditional sense. Peele’s thrilled is based on the real-life racial injustices that black people face in their daily lives.
How did Peele successfully do this? The main character Chris finds himself on a weekend getaway with his girlfriend at her parent’s house. The first question he asks her before leaving is, “Do they know I’m black?” she replies that it shouldn’t matter. She basically was insinuating that they can’t be racist due to the fact that they voted for Obama multiple times. As the story progresses, you catch some racist undertones from slave auctions to the harvesting of black bodies. As mentioned before, ‘Get Out’ isn’t the traditional thriller because it is too close to real life. That’s why it making $100 million at the box office, on a $5 million dollar budget is a big surprise. Especially since it has a black director. Movies need funding, and for many it is hard to get funding. Now it’s even harder for black movies to get funding. Nate Parker even had to put $100,000 of his own money into ‘Birth Of A Nation’. Eventually he raised $10 million. ‘Birth Of A Nation’ ended up flopping due to news coming out about a sexual assault case he apart of many years ago. Many studios are hesitant to back black films because they assume they’re not profitable.
Up until now, the most successful black movies have been Terry Perry’s Madea series which many black people have criticized for stereotyping black people.
Perry has tried to continuously move away from the Madea roles, but his films outside of Madea have fallen short at the box office. ‘Get Out’ is a fresh concept that humanizes black people.
It seems like many black movies go straight to DVD, or straight to Netflix. Studios aren’t funding black movies because they feel as though they’re inferior and won’t do as well at the box office. It seems the only time black movies do get a backing or support, it’s usually a movie where the black person is a slave or portrayed as a drug dealer. That’s how it’s been for the past couples years, up until now. Where ‘Moonlight’, a black movie centering around the queer community, won ‘Best Picture’ at the Oscars. In that same night, ‘Fences’ won an Oscar and ‘Hidden Figures’ was nominated. Both movies humanizing black people and portraying them as more than slaves and drug dealers. It seems as though 2016 is shaping up to be a great year for black films. It’s a new era where we are no longer praised for slave roles but instead, praises for being the heroes in the movies.