Racism Portrayed Differently in “Get Out”
In the 2017 horror film Get Out, directed and written by Jordan Peele, viewers discover a cultural transmission of racism in America. This horror thriller is about an African American male named Chris, who goes to his white girlfriend Rose’s house for the weekend to meet her family. Chris is told that her parents are very liberal and not racist. Chris arrives at Rose’s parents house and immediately feels uncomfortable when he sees that the only other African Americans in the suburb are creepy house servants. Rose’s parents have a large party with their white friends from town. Throughout the party, Chris feels uneasy and soon learns that most African Americans who go to this suburb go missing. When watching the movie trailer, I thought the movie would be about the stereotypical racism towards African Americans from rednecks. But I learned that this film rejects the reinforcement of the norm that racism against African Americans is only from southern conservative white people. However, as the movie moves along, the viewers receive the cultural transmission that racism in America comes from white liberals who envy African Americans.
To begin, before agreeing to go to Rose’s parents house, Chris immediately asks Rose if her parents know that Chris is black. Rose tells Chris that her parents are not racist and her dad would have voted for Obama for a third term if he could. Chris feels some relief, but does not know that having resent against his race is not the only form of racism. When Rose’s dad greats Chris he always says, “my man,” to try to use slang to talk to Chris. This seemed like the dad was trying to capture Chris’s culture in a stereotypical way. Also, when the dad shows Chris around the house, he points out a picture of the grandfather who lost to the black Jesse Owens in the olympic qualifying 100 meter dash. Rose’s dad tells Chris that the grandfather almost got over losing to the black man. This clearly shows that the grandfather envied the African Americans athleticism. Also, at dinner, Rose’s brother tells Chris that he has the perfect body type to be a mixed martial arts fighter. The brother tells Chris that he would kill for that body type. This shows that the brother is jealous of the African American physical appearance. Furthermore, Chris goes out in the middle of the night and sees Walter, who is a African American, sprint straight at him with perfect running form. We later learn that Walter’s brain is controlled by Rose’s Grandfather who was the sprinter that lost to Jesse Owens. This showed that the Grandfathers way to get over his loss was to take on an African American body, that he thinks is superior to the white man’s body. As the movie progresses, the viewers perceive the new form of racism in America threw Chris’ eyes.
At Rose’s family party, Chris feels uncomfortable due to the consistent interest in Chris from the party guests. To begin, Chris and Rose are approached by a white woman who asks Rose if Chris is better in bed because he is black. This shows how white women envy African Americans for their stereotypical attributes. Furthermore, Chris approaches the only other black guest at the party, Logan. Logan is married to an old white woman, but acts very strange and talks as if he is white. The audience finds out that Logan was a black man who went missing and has the brain of an old white man. This shows how the white women in the movie want African Americans as husbands, but only want their bodies. Also, Chris is approached by four white males who ask him how he feels that African Americans have a social advantage in our country. This clearly shows that white people want to be African American to obtain the social and physical advantages from the African American Race. At the conclusion of the party, Rose’s dad conducts an auction for Chris where his white guests bid on Chris’ body. These old white people want to have brain transplants to Chris’ body, so the can be black physically, but still keep their brain that they feel is superior. This shows the new idea of racism in America that white people want to be black for social and physical advantages.
Ultimately, Get out is currently number one at the box office, which means that many Americans have been exposed to the media’s new interpretation of racism against African Americans in America. Since president Barack Obama’s election, many Americans feel that racism has completely evaporated. However, Get Out sends the cultural transmission of the new way that racism exists in our society. The movie demonstrates numerous examples of white people envying African Americans physical and social advantage to the point where white people want to be black. This is important because our society needs to learn that racism has not gone away, and racism has transformed into envying the African American race rather than resenting it. All Americans should view this movie in order to understand the new way that racism exists. Our society should learn from this movie to accept ourselves for our own physical and social advantages, rather than wanting to put our brains in someone else’s body.