Director: Jordan Peele
Runtime: 130 min
Cast: Daniel Kaluuya, Keke Palmer, Steve Yeun, Brandon Perea
Synopsis: After random objects falling from the sky result in the death of their father, ranch-owning siblings OJ and Emerald Haywood attempt to capture video evidence of an unidentified flying object with the help of tech salesman Angel Torres and documentarian Antlers Hols.
Oscar® winner Jordan Peele disrupted and redefined modern horror with Get Out and then Us. Now, he reimagines the sci fi genre with the expansive comedy horror epic Nope.
Peele reunites with Oscar-winner Daniel Kaluuya [Get Out (2017), Judas and the Black Messiah (2021)] who is joined by Keke Palmer [(Hustlers (2019), Alice (2022)] and Oscar-nominee Steven Yeun [Minari (2020), Okja (2017)] as residents in a lonely patch of inland California who bear witness to an uncanny and chilling discovery.
Nope follows a group of residents of inland California who witness a chilling discovery that is about to change everything. The film looks stunning. Lots of beautiful shots of cloudy skies and spectacular night and day vistas spectacularly shot on Imax cameras by master cinematographer, Hoyte Van Hoytema. Dark, foreboding imagery helps Jordan Peele build some effective tension during the first half of the film, when the audience (and the film’s characters) still don’t know exactly what’s going on and what exactly is threatening them.
This is an especially original and highly anticipated epic thriller which has been called by the Evening Standard :“the most original event movie of the year, if not the decade”.
Siblings OJ Daniel Kaluuya) and Emerald (Keke Palmer) have only one thing in common: they’ve recently inherited their late father’s ranc,h. But when an unexplained phenomenon appears to threaten their existence, and that of neighbouring theme park run by Ricky ‘Jupe’ Park (Steven Yuen) who tries to profit from the mysterious, otherworldly phenomenon. OJ and Emerald must join forces!
All the characters in Nope have some sort of connection to the entertainment industry in some form and reflect a facet of it: the siblings, one of whom runs the family business, a ranch providing horses for Hollywood movies; the other is a wannabe performer entertainer.
But their businesses are failing – animals are being supplanted by CGI, and horses can be unpredictable on set and hard to control, and therefore replaceable.
Nope has some memorable use of visuals and audio with its standout cinematography.
Jordan Peele has delivered a love letter to the sci-fin UFO genre infused with an inventive perspective for modern day audiences – not just intense but interesting.
Particularly spectacular are the giant, predatory, carnivorous alien-jellyfish-amoeba
in the skies.
In an interview with Rotten Tomatoes, Peele talked about the title of Nope. Originally intending to use the title Little Green Men, he decided to change it during the filmmaking process. As a result, Peele discovered the perfect title that felt truly singular to this piece of storytelling.
“When I was writing the script, it was called Little Green Men,” Peele said. “You know, I’m always talking about something human, a human flaw, and there was something about our connection with spectacle and money and our monetization of spectacle. So, the little green men that I started talking about was the little green men on the money. There’s lots of names that I was circulating in my head, and at the end of the day, the film felt singular. Nope was the only thing that I could say to describe it.”
The film has an excellent ensemble cast and should be seen on as large a screen as possible.
Images courtesy of Universal Pictures