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If you’ve been paying any attention to movies lately, you’ve likely heard about Us. This film starring Lupita Nyong’o is the second movie that Jordan Peele has both written and directed. It follows Peele’s universally-acclaimed 2017 directorial debut Get Out, which won Best Original Screenplay at the 90th Academy Awards. The general consensus is that Us is well worth watching. Here’s everything you should know before you head to the movies.
What is ‘Us’ about?
Us centers on the story of a family on a summer vacation that quickly becomes terrifying. Traumas from main character Adelaide’s (Nyong’o) past begin to resurface, and as they peak, her paranoias play out in real time. When night falls, Adelaide and her family encounter doppelgängers of themselves — who are far from friendly.
Critics love it
On leading movie review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes, Us holds a 94% approval rating across 322 reviews. Fellow aggregator Metacritic has given the movie a Metascore of 81, based on 53 reviews. Among the most notable publications to give the film a perfect score are RogerEbert.com, Chicago Sun-Times, and Wall Street Journal.
Viewers like it — but not as much as critics do
Both Rotten Tomatoes and Metacritic also allow regular viewers to review movies. 69% of the nearly 3,000 Rotten Tomatoes users who have seen Us liked it. Likewise, among the 150 Metacritic users who have reviewed Us, the film holds a score of 7.5. Whether because of the larger sample size or expectation differences between ordinary moviegoers and film critics, statistics point to the latter group enjoying Us more.
It’s a box office hit — and record-breaker
Us’ box office figures from its opening weekend nearly doubled expectations. It brought in $70 million in the United States, setting the record for opening weekend earnings for an original (not adapted or part of an existent franchise) horror film. This isn’t the only record its opening weekend broke: $70 million sets a new high mark for opening weekend earnings for an original R-rated film.
Us may be an allegory for American history
The word “us” looks an awful lot like “U.S.” Some critics have suggested this parallel is intentional. The film’s basic plot may represent an allegory for how America’s leaving people behind may come back to haunt it. Whether the country’s lack of reparations for slavery or its epidemic of homelessness, some critics say Us depicts what happens when America neglects its past. Peele himself has described the film as encouraging people to look inward rather than living in irrational, stereotype-based fear.
There’s a twist ending
Nobody likes a spoiler, but there have been ample headlines stating that Us packs a mind-blowing twist ending without revealing what the ending is. Many publications have attempted to explain the ending, and some have even cited Peele’s own comments on it. Save these articles for reading after seeing the movie — it sounds like this twist is well worth waiting to experience.
If you’ve seen Us, what did you think of it? If you’re not planning to see it, then why not? Let us know in the comments!