Double horror "We": encounter with the horror-I

In Jordan Peele's terrific horror film "We", a US American showpiece family is being pursued by its bloodthirsty doppelgangers. A shocker who digs into the deepest levels of meaning.

"Find Yourself" stands above the Hall of Mirrors, strangely set apart from the other funfair attractions on Santa Cruz beach. Although barely ten years old, little Adelaide Wilson (Madison Curry) can not resist this very adult promise. Carefully, she enters the winding rooms, but as soon as she has oriented herself, the light goes out. And then she meets the horror that, as in any good horror film, has just been announced as this: herself.

Fragmentation anxiety, the French psychoanalyst Jacques Lacan has called the horror that a toddler experiences when it sees itself for the first time in the mirror and realizes that both itself and a representation of themselves exist in the world. In his virtuoso second film "We", director and author Jordan Peele is rejoining things, spreading fear of union. For what could be more shocking for the self than to face one's own existence, including its worst abysses, lies and crimes?

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"We": This is America

So it is also a trauma that carries the little Adelaide from the encounter in the mirror cabinet by itself. However, she can not talk about that, not even when, twenty years later (now played by Lupita Nyong'o), she returns to Santa Cruz with her own family of four because she has inherited a neat house there.

But in her marriage, anyway, Gabe (Winston Duke) is responsible for speaking. He constantly talks and jokes. And even when suddenly one evening a family is standing in their driveway, just standing there watching their house, he wants to talk to the newcomers first. What's up with the four people in dark red overalls, then Gabes and Adelaide's little son Jason must pronounce when everything is too late, the four invaders are long in their living room and the first blood shed: "That's us! "

What follows goes far beyond the horror subgenre of home invasion , it's a homeland invasion . Because not only the flagship idyll of a single family is threatened here, but a whole country. "We're Americans," Adelaide's doppelganger (also Nyong'o) grates before shooing her daughter Zora out of the house to be the more lustful hunt for the teenager.

Read here a portrait of leading actress Lupita Nyong'o and how she found the fearsome voice of her character

"You always feel your duality, as Americans, as Negroes, two souls, two thoughts, two irreconcilable strivings, two fighting ideas in a dark body, the endurance and strength alone from tearing up," has the antiracism pioneer WEB Du Bois wrote in 1903 in "The Soul of Black Folk".

It is one of countless interpretive tracks that Jordan Peele interprets in "We" and is followed by his brilliant cast including Mike Gioulaki's extremely agile camera. Alone three times, the film begins to get started. First, a text panel can be seen, on which is read from a wide network of tunnels throughout North America. Then the camera pulls off a wall full of rabbit stables, finally we see little Adelaide sitting in front of the TV in 1986: The charity campaign "Hands Across America", a homeless human chain, is being advertised.

USA 2019
Original title: "Us"
Written and directed by Jordan Peele
Performers: Lupita Nyong'o, Winston Duke, Jason Wilson, Shahadi Wright Joseph, Elizabeth Moss, Tim Heidecker
Production: Monkeypaw Productions
Rental: Universal
Length: 116 minutes
FSK: from 16 years
Start: 21st March 2019

Should we follow the white rabbit like Alice in Wonderland? Is "Underground Railroad" more than the name of the historical network for the liberation of slaves? Is there actually an underground rail network? All initially designed tracks lead both into and out of the movie. There is no such thing as a hermeneutic path through "we", which results in some disorientation, and even further through the moments in which the learned comedian Peele places a really good gag. Note: Even in the greatest need, one should articulate as accurately as possible in front of the Smart Speaker.

With the narrative Ausgefranstheit of "We" Peele undermines the same high expectations, which he has awakened with his sensational, Oscar-winning debut film "Get Out". In it he had made such a wise narrowing to the perspective of the young black photographer Chris (Daniel Kaluuya) that one could not help but to embrace them and to look with a "black" view of America and its problems with racism.

In "We" we see again in the terrified eyes of a black main character. Where the "sunken place" opened behind Chris' pupils, in which he was swallowed by feelings of guilt and powerlessness, but from Adelaides eyes flashes the will to survive. She struggles with a relentlessness that excites and then terrifies. After all, do we know what Adelaide is fighting for or against? Whose prosperity and well-being does it defend?

In the video: The trailer for "We"


Universal Pictures

Two plot twists further, this question is still not satisfactorily resolved. But maybe she does not have to. Because that here something terrible has come together, which would have been better kept separate, this horror can be felt long after the end of "We."