Thanks to Universal Pictures, I got to see Jordan Peele’s latest work “Nope” before its release this Friday, July 22, 2022. Of course, if you read my review of Peele’s “US” movie, released in 2019, then you know that I’m currently a big Peele fan and will watch anything with his name attached to it — so I just had to see “Nope”. That’s also how I got suckered into watching Lovecraft Country week after week, before learning who Misha Green was. And while I still haven’t seen “Get Out” yet, I do plan on watching it this weekend so I can compare the three a tad better.
However … can we talk about “Nope” please!
“Nope” is definitely not a horror film by any means you guys, so let’s let that one go.
It’s more of a sci-fi thriller, that keeps you on the edge of your toes, with a dash of Black boy cowboy foineness, and a whole lot of UFO alien madness.
The film reunites Peele with Oscar® winner Daniel Kaluuya (Get Out, Judas and the Black Messiah), who is joined by Keke Palmer (Hustlers, Alice) and Oscar® nominee Steven Yeun (Minari, Okja) as residents in a lonely gulch of inland California who bear witness to an “uncanny” and “chilling” discovery.
Listen, we get real close and personal with my man Daniel in this one, and I love it.
I’m not mad at him for choosing “Nope” over “Black Panther 2” y’all. My man is front and center in this jawn and he slays every moment he’s on screen. But ummm …
Them folks found a UFO, and things got WEIRD, quick!
That’s basically the story here, give or take a few twists.
So before I jump into my actual movie review of “Nope”, please do me a favor — if you haven’t already seen the “Nope” movie trailer, make sure you watch that before watching the actual movie.
The trailer isn’t as scary as you think … and you’ll need it to really enjoy the movie’s reveal of those big moments. Now … for the moment you’ve all been waiting for …
My Review Of Jordan Peele’s New “Nope” Movie
“Nope” Is A Lot To Process, But It’s Definitely Worth Seeing On The Big Screen
Best believe it’s different than any other movie you’ve ever seen, including Peele’s former works. Which is what makes “Nope” such a great film. It’s different!
However, if you’re anything like me and you saw and loved “US” when it was released, then you’re probably expecting something along those intense lines of madness and commentary. And well I don’t wanna disappoint you but … NOPE. That’s not what you’re getting this time around.
Don’t get me wrong, “Nope” is definitely intense, but it’s not as intense as “Us” was. You can relax with this one.
Nothing is predictable and there are even a few laughs thrown in just to make you comfortable and throw you off your tracks.
So get you some popcorn, a cactus icee, and just chill. Because despite what you saw in the trailer, “Nope” is NOT a horror film.
Nor does it try to be.
Yes, the genre is “horror”, but I feel like a lot of us horror haters see that label and immediately think of our worst fears and nightmares. And that’s why I keep saying it’s “not a horror”. It’s not what you think it is!
There was like one jump scare, and a few creepy moments, with a ton of NOPE, absolutely NOT moments — but nothing that’ll give you real nightmares.
There’s even a scene that made me instantly think of the Lovecraft County dancing sisters, but it doesn’t come CLOSE to being as scary as the one in Lovecraft.
But ummmm …
Keke was giving gay auntie at the cookout, and I’m not even sure why.
Nor am I sure if I completely hate it. But it did take me back for a bit.
I do commend her for “trying something different” … my gut is saying that she really put her character together, and just went for it.
And I love that they made her character into girls. But y’all know how I feel about straight folks playing gay characters. So I’m not really sure how I feel about Keke’s performance yet. I’ll update y’all after my second watch.
Of course zaddy Daniel never ever loses a beat though! I can see why he passed up on playing a smaller role in a Marvel film to be front and center in Jordan’s new spectacle.
But as much as I loved their performances … let me not forget to shout out Keith David here, who is always amazing to watch on screen …
I’m not sure what this movie was trying to say, and that’s what really creeps me out about this.
It’s like walking around an art gallery and not knowing what any of the paintings mean!
Like … I have absolutely no commentary about this, which sucks because I had all the things to say about “Us”.
Peele’s previous pieces were extremely easy to digest once completed, and you can tell because folks took to Twitter instantly to talk about all the things.
Peele left the world speechless and talking all at the same time with “Get Out” and “Us”.
But I just don’t think this one will cause as much chatter. Aside from folks probably saying it was the worst film of the three?
I’m also worried that people are going to be quite disappointed in the outcome of this film. Especially when it’s so hard not to compare it to Jordan’s previous work!
There are a few holes in the story, that make “Nope” a little underwhelming once it’s completed. So much so, that as satisfying as the ending was, it still wasn’t enough for me to walk out of the theater “floating on cloud nine”!
So not being able to walk away and say, well even though there were holes I think this movie really meant something, is killing me!
Someone mentioned exploitation, but I don’t feel like it was deep enough to go that route?
I did feel like “Nope” leaned towards saying “folks would do just about anything to get rich or stay relevant”. And with everything we see celebs doing these days, I can really see this being the takeaway. Hell, I can even see this being a “lesson” as to why folks need to “keep their head down, and mind their business”.
But nothing really solidifies any of those themes for me. I’m almost positive I’m actually wrong. So, yah, I’ve got nothing.
And WTF did the monkey have to do with anything?
I won’t spoil it for you, but I’m still so unsure of what this monkey had to do with this story about aliens and UFOs! Was it possessed? And if so, how did it become possessed? Because nothing and no one else acted that way.
It all just feels so random!
As much as I love the fact that Jordan Peele seems to have a thing for animals, and I love that both “Us” and “Nope” started out with animals — because that means Pelle has a “signature touch” — I just don’t get this monkey!! And I want too!
But there’s not enough backstory to tell us why this shit is relevant.
But let me wrap this “Nope” movie review up …
Because despite not knowing what Jordan was trying to say with this one, and despite it’s plot holes, “Nope” was actually a good movie and I do think it’s worth seeing on the big screen! It’s especially lovely to watch in IMAX as the cinematography is a delight!
I will always be blown away by Peele’s creativity, and his ability to think out of the box, and put together interesting stories for us.
Even if I can’t say its a GREAT story.
The fact that the “Nope” trailer made us want answers, and that nothing in the trailer was what we thought it was, alone was genius!
And then the twist towards the end we never saw coming!! It was great.
I loved a lot of the aspects of this movie, as separate moments and concepts — just not all together.
If that makes sense! Like what Peele did with the subtle hints to what was to come — was great! Which is why I keep saying y’all need to watch the trailer, because without it you won’t realize what’s important to pay attention to.
And I love that we don’t ever have to see what’s really going down, so there’s no gore or much violence being showed on camera!
There was one point where things were covered in smoke, so you couldn’t see what was happening, and I loved that.
Plus Keke and Daniel dapping it up was dope!
I really felt that moment — the happiness, the joy, the “we got this b*xch”, I felt it all in that split second. That moment is probably one of my faves from the entire film.
And let’s just be honest, a lot of the things I loved about “Nope” really just comes down to the fact that this is a BLACK film.
It’s Blackity black, and I’m proud … of it. It doesn’t really matter to me if it’s a GREAT story or not, because this was made for us.
And it’s always nice to just have something that’s made for US.
That’s really why I love Jordan Peele! It may not be the horror film you’re expecting, but you’re gonna get a Black experience on screen that feels so f*cking realistic, but also so out of this world, that it’s hard to ignore.
Like the brother sister relationship between Keke’s and Daniel’s characters! They’re not a perfect family, and you can tell — she’s always out and about, he’s more reserved and quiet.
They normally can’t depend on each other for business, but they can ALWAYS count on each other when shit goes down!
She sticks it out because he stays! He leaves because he wants her to be safe! There’s a realistic dynamic between the two, that makes us root for them, and I love that.
Look … “Nope” is entertaining as hell, I’ve gotta give them that! I was never ever bored!
It’s just unfortunate that the story is a little muddy and confusing as to what this new piece of artwork is trying to tell us.
Had the message been clear at the end I think I would have really loved this a lot more.
I just didn’t get that “big bang, fish blown outta the water” feeling at the end I was hoping I’d get like I did after seeing “Us”. And that’s because “Nope” is a lot more subtle.
But y’all “Nope” is a good time on the big screen.
Definitely see it in theaters and in IMAX if you can. The visuals really do stay with you!
Is it the top movie of the year? Nah! It doesn’t even make it into my top five! Is it the best Jordan film ever? NOPE, cause for me that was “Us”, until I see “Get Out” of course.
But that doesn’t mean “Nope” was a bad movie! It’s far from it!
Just don’t go into this one thinking you’re gonna get a gory, blood soaked, terrifying, hide in someone’s armpits, horror film, and wipe “Get Out” and “Us” out of your memory for a few hours and you should be okay.
Watch this because Jordan Peele created a dope UFO movie that’s “for the culture”.
You know the way we think “Leprechaun” is for us, or the “Scary Movie” franchise is wacked out but we still watch them because they’re for us? Just go into the theaters and have a great time watching this.
Don’t overthink it, don’t try to guess what’s happening next, just relax and enjoy the show. Because I definitely enjoyed watching “Nope” and I can’t wait to see it again!