Jordan Peale of Key and Peale is not someone you would expect to direct and write horror movies. Nope is Jordan Peale’s third film he’s directed and wrote. Unlike his previous films that are more psychologically scary, Nope I think I can best compare with is Jaws in terms of horror. I really liked the dynamic between the siblings OJ Haywood played by Daniel Kaluuya and Em Haywood played Keke Palmer. Both characters are great foils to each other and both actors do a terrific job.
Spoilers: The central themes of Nope are about spectacle, animal cruelty and trying to train the untrainable. The flying saucer named Jean Jacket wonderfully embodies these themes. This is such a great unique take on UFOs where unlike something like Close Encounters, there’s no aliens in the UFO, the alien is literally the UFO. I also love how it sometimes changes shape; one point it looks metal but the next it looks soft like one of those parachutes’ kids play with at school. I think my main gripe involves the chimp Gordy. Actually, I think Gordy brilliantly ties well into the theme of trying to control animals. The problem is mostly that the incident doesn’t factor into the story and it’s just dropped after Jupe dies.
All of these films manage to balance being both really scary and really funny. Nope is no exception. Jordan Peele is one of those directors that so far has not wrote and directed a bad movie yet. The title may be Nope but this film is ironically gets a giant YES from me. Also who ever thought up the “Jupiter’s Claim” website to promote the movie should get a promotion.
+ Jean Jacket
+ OJ and Em Haywood