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And here's the official discussion thread for all things "Us." Including those ginormous spoilers that left many of us with more questions than answers.

Please try not to spoil other movies within a month of being out in theaters as someone might have seen "Us," but not "Captain Marvel." Also please respect everyone's opinions on the movie!

Have at it and let's hope you don't piss off your tether in the process!

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Okay I'm gonna start off now that I have more time lol.

I'm 100% in love with this movie, but I still have questions that I wouldn't have had if Jordan hadn't peppered in just enough information to raise these questions.

I get that they are tethered and that everything that happens underground is the result of what the people above ground are doing. However, Red Lupita says they were all created by someone and that the people above ground were just puppets to be controlled. A friend had said he heard in that monologue that it didn't work so the people above ground actually weren't controlled at all, but it still doesn't make a lot of sense to me, especially after reading a couple of articles that address what I had heard (can't remember where I read one but it was titled something like "Us Removes the Idea of Free Will").

My question then is: What the fuck is happening then? I know I heard her say the people above ground were being controlled like puppets, but if their actions are actually controlled by the people below ground then 1. How can they make choices based on things they are not seeing and 2. None of their anger is really then warranted because everything is *their* doing and the above ground people don't even know it.

And it's this that made me leave off a full star from my rating because I really thought this was a perfectly creepy movie with some really good comedic moments thrown in (the entire scene with Tim and Winston was slapstick comedy GOLD), but I think the story would have held up much better for me if Jordan had just left it at something like we all have a tether to a double, and that's that. No need for the couple of lines going deeper that only cause more confusion.

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I just watched this for the second time yesterday and I still also have questions! In Red's monologue, I think she said that she (Red) understood that humans were experimenting and found a way to copy the body but not the soul (hence the tethers) and the idea was that they were going to use those underground to control things above ground, but that the experiment went awry and was abandoned. The tethered, then were left "for generations" and just fended for themselves down there, I guess? 

I don't think that everyone had tethers, but they had reproduced enough to apparently do a Hands Across America redo. Red says that she and Adelaide were born special, and they were brought together by God the night of the switch. Do you think young Red was able to control young Adelaide, and that's how she affected the switch in the hall of mirrors? Then she would obviously still control her from underground, but new/adult Red had the soul and was able to lead the others into an uprising, because she would be the only one who knew of the upper world, and of course Hands Across America. (new question, how does she lead an uprising if she's tethered?).

Also, I'm still not sure what actually happened with the dance they talked about? There seemed to have been some big miraculous Godly intervention, but it wasn't clear to me what it was. 

Last question (for now) - Did adult Adelaide know she was from the underground the whole movie? I think she did, and it made the second watch more interesting.

Lupita's performance is just absolutely beyond. She's terrifying as Red. This whole thing was gold! But yes, QUESTIONS! 

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Red says that she and Adelaide were born special, and they were brought together by God the night of the switch. Do you think young Red was able to control young Adelaide, and that's how she affected the switch in the hall of mirrors? Then she would obviously still control her from underground, but new/adult Red had the soul and was able to lead the others into an uprising, because she would be the only one who knew of the upper world, and of course Hands Across America. (new question, how does she lead an uprising if she's tethered?).

This was also a question I had as well. Is the tether more of an "idea" rather than a physical thing? Because once Adelaide #1 switches with Adelaide #2 then #1 becomes tethered to everything that #2 now does above ground, but #1 is the one born with the "soul" so it doesn't seem like that should be the case. Yet, #1 mentions that everything #2 does effects her (i.e. Having a C-Section operation, dancing, etc).

6 minutes ago, WatchOutForSnakes said:

Also, I'm still not sure what actually happened with the dance they talked about? There seemed to have been some big miraculous Godly intervention, but it wasn't clear to me what it was. 

In my opinion, I believe that is really when the Underground people saw that Adelaide had a soul, because dance is something that is truly spectacular to watch when soul is put into it. I loved that sequence because they show the ways those two are dancing and it's not identical. I'm not sure if it is supposed to be identical or not but Adelaide #2 now above ground is doing very methodical technical moves in ballet, and Adelaide #1 underground is doing very wild interpretive movements. I believe those watching her dance could see she was not one of them in that moment. But, that begs the question, did she never speak or yell or try to get out of that situation before then? That also takes me back to my thought that the tether is not a physical thing because it seems like once #2 goes above ground then that's that and #1 is stuck there until the uprising.

10 minutes ago, WatchOutForSnakes said:

Last question (for now) - Did adult Adelaide know she was from the underground the whole movie? I think she did, and it made the second watch more interesting.

I think she knew as well, which definitely makes the exposition seem way more clunky because she keeps asking "What do you want" and Red!Adelaide seems to mainly be explaining this all to her specifically, because she continuously ignores Gabe and Zora speaking. But now knowing what we know that seems absolutely pointless.

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1 hour ago, taylorannephoto said:

I think she knew as well, which definitely makes the exposition seem way more clunky because she keeps asking "What do you want" and Red!Adelaide seems to mainly be explaining this all to her specifically, because she continuously ignores Gabe and Zora speaking. But now knowing what we know that seems absolutely pointless.

The only thing I could otherwise think of was that she suppressed the experience and grew up learning to fit in. 

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21 hours ago, taylorannephoto said:

Okay I'm gonna start off now that I have more time lol.

I'm 100% in love with this movie, but I still have questions that I wouldn't have had if Jordan hadn't peppered in just enough information to raise these questions.

I get that they are tethered and that everything that happens underground is the result of what the people above ground are doing. However, Red Lupita says they were all created by someone and that the people above ground were just puppets to be controlled. A friend had said he heard in that monologue that it didn't work so the people above ground actually weren't controlled at all, but it still doesn't make a lot of sense to me, especially after reading a couple of articles that address what I had heard (can't remember where I read one but it was titled something like "Us Removes the Idea of Free Will").

My question then is: What the fuck is happening then? I know I heard her say the people above ground were being controlled like puppets, but if their actions are actually controlled by the people below ground then 1. How can they make choices based on things they are not seeing and 2. None of their anger is really then warranted because everything is *their* doing and the above ground people don't even know it.

And it's this that made me leave off a full star from my rating because I really thought this was a perfectly creepy movie with some really good comedic moments thrown in (the entire scene with Tim and Winston was slapstick comedy GOLD), but I think the story would have held up much better for me if Jordan had just left it at something like we all have a tether to a double, and that's that. No need for the couple of lines going deeper that only cause more confusion.

From what I got from everything was that the tethers were meant to be the strings for the government to control people, but as was stated it in the film, it ended up reversing on them as the government couldn't duplicate a soul which seemed to be the key item to create the "strings" basically making the tethered the puppets moving based on the whims of the originals, excluding Lupita's characters who were special. My only couple questions are about logistics like how they kept receiving rabbits to eat, though I think that could be explained by the tool for cloning being left down in the facility with the tethers and they figured out how to keep making bunnies, or how all the millions of tethered were able to get the red jumpsuits, gold scissors, and gloves? Though in these instances I think it just boils down to "cuz horror movie" which I'm completely fine with, I did wonder why would the government not at least put like a baby gate in front of the escalator leading up to the real world or better yet, just terminate all the tethered when it was revealed to not be a viable control option for them? I did love reading a theory about how this is in the same universe as Get Out in that it can be inferred that the grandfather of the Armitages in Get Out was involved with the original program to create tethers, and seeing how the plan failed due being unable to replicate a soul, went about finding another way to control a body, leading to the use of neurosurgery and hypnosis that his descendants continue on with.

Also, there is another trippy theory I've found about there being another body switched which actually makes A LOT of sense.

 

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18 hours ago, taylorannephoto said:

But, that begs the question, did she never speak or yell or try to get out of that situation before then? That also takes me back to my thought that the tether is not a physical thing because it seems like once #2 goes above ground then that's that and #1 is stuck there until the uprising.

I think she knew as well, which definitely makes the exposition seem way more clunky because she keeps asking "What do you want" and Red!Adelaide seems to mainly be explaining this all to her specifically, because she continuously ignores Gabe and Zora speaking. But now knowing what we know that seems absolutely pointless.

The reason OG Adelade didn't scream was her voicebox had been severely damaged when she got choked out by her tether, hence her voice being what it is when they see each other as adults. As for her knowing yeah she definitely knew, but like when any kid has been caught breaking a rule we stammer and lurch trying to cover our tracks, so tether Adelade was not only trying to play coy in front of a family of non-tethers, but also fighting against reverting back to her tether-ness when seeing her real person after 30 years.

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The second Jason twist was something my friend picked up on her viewing, but I missed on both my viewings, but I'm convinced. Also, I now think that Adelaide's mom knew about the experiment, and maybe knew that the tethered daughter came out of the fun house because she said to the therapist, "I just want my little girl back." 

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59 minutes ago, RyanSz said:

The reason OG Adelade didn't scream was her voicebox had been severely damaged when she got choked out by her tether, hence her voice being what it is when they see each other as adults. As for her knowing yeah she definitely knew, but like when any kid has been caught breaking a rule we stammer and lurch trying to cover our tracks, so tether Adelade was not only trying to play coy in front of a family of non-tethers, but also fighting against reverting back to her tether-ness when seeing her real person after 30 years.

Ah yes I did forget about the choking.

But I still think that writing wise they would have planted a little bit more to let us in on the fact that the Adelaides were not who we thought they were because even if Adelaide #2 (Above ground Adelaide as we know her at the time) was trying to play it cool and act like she didn't get it there wouldn't be as much of a need for Adelaide #1 to explain shit, because she knows that she knows.

I also think I just need to see it again lol.

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14 hours ago, taylorannephoto said:

Ah yes I did forget about the choking.

But I still think that writing wise they would have planted a little bit more to let us in on the fact that the Adelaides were not who we thought they were because even if Adelaide #2 (Above ground Adelaide as we know her at the time) was trying to play it cool and act like she didn't get it there wouldn't be as much of a need for Adelaide #1 to explain shit, because she knows that she knows.

I also think I just need to see it again lol.

There are some small things that I had pointed out to me through a few different videos, like from the guy who made the video I posted. Things like Adelaide 2 was a devout vegetarian, because she no longer wanted to eat meat after eating only raw rabbit, the fact that she tells Jason to listen to the beat of "I Got 5 On It" and starts snapping but she's off key, showing that she isn't fully untethered, and her fighting style is more in line with the other tethers and measured while her family are pretty much getting lucky shots in and fighting with little skill.

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22 hours ago, RyanSz said:

There are some small things that I had pointed out to me through a few different videos, like from the guy who made the video I posted. Things like Adelaide 2 was a devout vegetarian, because she no longer wanted to eat meat after eating only raw rabbit, the fact that she tells Jason to listen to the beat of "I Got 5 On It" and starts snapping but she's off key, showing that she isn't fully untethered, and her fighting style is more in line with the other tethers and measured while her family are pretty much getting lucky shots in and fighting with little skill.

She also looks pretty fucking evil when she kills the second twin? 

Also, are the Tethers  who are not Red unable to kill Adelaide (the who's dressed in white that turns nearly red with blood by the end)? There's a moment when Tether Kitty holds her scissors right in Adelaide's face and trembles and runs away. That made me think she wanted to kill Adelaide but couldn't because, of course, Adelaide is one of them. 

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1 hour ago, WatchOutForSnakes said:

She also looks pretty fucking evil when she kills the second twin? 

Also, are the Tethers  who are not Red unable to kill Adelaide (the who's dressed in white that turns nearly red with blood by the end)? There's a moment when Tether Kitty holds her scissors right in Adelaide's face and trembles and runs away. That made me think she wanted to kill Adelaide but couldn't because, of course, Adelaide is one of them. 

No Red wanted Adelaide to herself and wanted to draw out her revenge for a long as she could, hence why the family isn't outright murdered by their tethers unlike every other person who comes across a tether. The tethers basically could do as they see so long as they ended up at the wall of tethers, so you see the tethers either doing their best to get a taste of the "good life" like Tex and Kitty immediately do, or go join up at the line like the homeless guy does right away, just so long as Red got her vengeance.

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My thoughts from Letterboxd:

The first takeaway from Us is that Jordan Peele's skills as a horror/thriller director remain considerable. This movie has several terrific suspense sequences, taut examples of well-executed visual storytelling. Also impressive is Peele's ability to communicate information visually during quiet character-building scenes, always capturing little hints to suggest what the characters are really thinking behind what they say. Acting performances are strong across the board, especially Lupita Nyong'o.

That said . . . the thematics of the story don't quite come together at the end, do they? Get Out's script was practically a Swiss watch, every part fitting together. The follow-up feels compelling but incomplete. Ending the film on a twist (which I figured out pretty early on, but that's neither here nor there) feels like a mistake to me, because Peele doesn't leave himself with enough time to deal with the implications of the outlandish concept at its center. He just kind of throws the information at you and then ends the movie. The film leaves you with a lot to think about, but without enough of a guidebook.

It all still kind of works, just because it's presented with such confidence and style (sometimes a sign of a great director). I was never bored . . . but I must also acknowledge that the script is a bit of a mess.

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On 3/29/2019 at 11:20 PM, RyanSz said:

the fact that she tells Jason to listen to the beat of "I Got 5 On It" and starts snapping but she's off key, showing that she isn't fully untethered

Omg I had totally noticed that she wasn't on beat at ALL but I never thought it would have to do with who she ends up being at the end. Damn, if that's the amount of detail put into this then I'm even more blown away than before.

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*LONG scattered thoughs POST*

I was away and didn't saw this "thread" when it was originally posted

But I did saw the movie opening day and again the next day... It's a really good movie made with lots of care for detail, unfortunately 1 thing did bother me... If we consider that original Lupita is actually living underground all these years cuz tethered Lupita chocked her and switched places with her then the scenes where she tells what happened to her husband and Red (along with tethred family) introduces herself and monologues/expositions her backstory don't hold up because they are talking as if there was no switch explaining some situations that didn't happen to them but to their doppelgangers. I know it's nitpicking but I'm more concerned with the scene in the bedroom where Lupita 2 posing as real tells her husband what happened the day at the beach and we see the abridged version of the intro stopping short before she choked Lupita 1 and at that point I do care but if/when I know she is NOT who she says she is then my sympathy is slim to none... She did tell her story looking out the window and facing away from her husband, giving him the back, maybe that was early tell (probably 'cuz she was actually lying/withholding the most important part of the story) I appreciated the twist in the horror movie level, that it's not really over, the family is alive with at least 1 tethered in toe...

Other than that some minor things but overall and for what it is I give Us 2 thumbs up


I now want to start to roll the ball here on something I saw in Reddit, both Red and Adelaide children are actually human/tethered hybrids 😮 So that has to be taken into consideration.

Continuing a thing that was posted above about who controls who in "Us"... 

My opinion about this is that the younger the subject is the strongest the connection for the human to control the tethered is (see young Adelaide now Red dancing below and the tethered above doing the same and Jason controlling Pluto... I am aware of the theory that Jason and Pluto also switched but then it means that when the experiment failed all the soulless tethders just follow along but in the successful Adelaide event the control goes both ways I guess. Gotta see it a 3rd time)

I also think Red and Adelaide share an actual special bond that increases the ability for one to control the other, It has been said in various reviews and analysis of "Us" that it deals with the theme of socioeconomic disparity in America and that is both obvious and subtle throughout the movie in many ways but 2 of the many things are 1. That the escalator leading to the tethered underground tunnel lab facility is goin down and 2. In the montage where we see Adelaide above the amusement park and her doppelganger below with the tethred people mimicking the action is like 2 socioeconomic classes (the have and the have nots) they are doing the same thing but the ones above enjoy themselves and it's not so the case for the ones below (like in Red chimney fire monologue she talks about food, toys and her overall lifestyle and experiences that are determined by her status) when Lupita 2 kills Lupita 1 (Red) is out of fear of losing the life she made after climbing the "social escalator" and putting someone else in hard times way.

In the '80 the hands across America movement's go was to help the less fortunate but it's 2019 and the problem has actually evolved and in "Us" the Americans that are ignored and abused to some degree (by the system or directly by other Americans) now demand retribution.

Another details was the constant appearance of the number 11 from the 11-11 Bible verse... (channel 11 news at 11, the Michael Jackson shirt was prize number 11, 11:11 the tied score from the sports game, 11:11pm the digital clock's time, 1111 ambulance number at the end)

Among other things was the specific shirt design from the Thriller music video I personally don't think it's a coincidence that Jordan Peele used it I think because the movie deals with "evil doppelgangers" and at the end of that music video Michael Jackson is revealed to be a cat eyed monster it fits with the theme of the movie perfectly

 

That's a I remember and I wish to keep the conversation going 😁

 

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I just can't get in line with the Jason and Pluto also switched places because that doesn't explain the lack of scarring on his face at the end. We for sure saw Pluto's face when Jason forced him to take the mask off and from his nose down was completely scarred over from being born into the fire, as Red had put it. So I can't seem to wrap my head around the theory that they've switched otherwise.

23 hours ago, IMAHUGEHDTGMFAN said:

But I did saw the movie opening day and again the next day... It's a really good movie made with lots of care for detail, unfortunately 1 thing did bother me... If we consider that original Lupita is actually living underground all these years cuz tethered Lupita chocked her and switched places with her then the scenes where she tells what happened to her husband and Red (along with tethred family) introduces herself and monologues/expositions her backstory don't hold up because they are talking as if there was no switch explaining some situations that didn't happen to them but to their doppelgangers. I know it's nitpicking but I'm more concerned with the scene in the bedroom where Lupita 2 posing as real tells her husband what happened the day at the beach and we see the abridged version of the intro stopping short before she choked Lupita 1 and at that point I do care but if/when I know she is NOT who she says she is then my sympathy is slim to none... She did tell her story looking out the window and facing away from her husband, giving him the back, maybe that was early tell (probably 'cuz she was actually lying/withholding the most important part of the story) I appreciated the twist in the horror movie level, that it's not really over, the family is alive with at least 1 tethered in toe...

This part of that exposition drop actually didn't bother me because I think always Adelaide knew that the real version of her would someday come back. So she's painting the situation as if she is the real one who "saw herself" and it traumatized her so that's why she's afraid of the area. In reality now we know she was always afraid of going near Santa Monica because deep down she knew that Red would find her and take revenge for the switch. It made sense to me that she would tell the story from that angle in that scene because she's telling a character that has zero context for any of it, so the exposition drop was warranted in that moment. I still just can't seem to wrap my brain around the one between the two Adelaide's because they both know everything.

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all of this is why I wondered if Adelaide had suppressed the memory of the switch and convinced herself that she was the real Adelaide the whole time. I think part of what Jordan Peele was getting at was suppressed trauma, and our memories are terrible narrators of our own tales, especially when severe trauma comes into play. 

One more thing about the t-shirt, when she grabs it, little Adelaide's mom says something to her dad about how the video had terrified Adelaide and kept her up at night. I'm guessing she always knew she was a tether. Or its more evidence that her mom knew she was/had a tether. 

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8 minutes ago, WatchOutForSnakes said:

One more thing about the t-shirt, when she grabs it, little Adelaide's mom says something to her dad about how the video had terrified Adelaide and kept her up at night. I'm guessing she always knew she was a tether. Or its more evidence that her mom knew she was/had a tether. 

But that was before the switch.

And I meant to comment on your post about this earlier but totally spaced on it.

I think that's a very classic line a lot of parents use after their child goes through any kind of change. I feel like I hear it a lot in terms of a kid becoming that rebellious teenager going through puberty lol. But of course once we know then it's a big glaring oh shit this isn't the same little girl and that's why she's like saying that, however, I still don't believe she ever actually knew. Cause you can hear her and the dad fighting and he is saying "it was just 15 minutes," and she yells, "And now she's not talking so what happened in that 15 minutes," or something like that (I can't remember her exact quote now). So I think she ALWAYS knew something happened down there but probably her mind went to molestation unfortunately.

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So thematically, what do people think this movie is actually ABOUT? Do you buy the idea that it's a class critique? That it's about America's underclass (be it racial, socioeconomic, whatever) giving the privileged a little what-for?

I ask, because that seems to be the most common critical interpretation, but I think the reveals at the end kind of hurt that reading (when you learn that the only reason anything went wrong was because Shadow Adelaide got out in the first place).

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6 minutes ago, sycasey 2.0 said:

So thematically, what do people think this movie is actually ABOUT? Do you buy the idea that it's a class critique? That it's about America's underclass (be it racial, socioeconomic, whatever) giving the privileged a little what-for?

I ask, because that seems to be the most common critical interpretation, but I think the reveals at the end kind of hurt that reading (when you learn that the only reason anything went wrong was because Shadow Adelaide got out in the first place).

Yes, I do. But I also don't think it gets hurt by that reveal, albeit because of what was mentioned above about someone climbing the ladder and being terrified of falling back down, or because she herself is owing reparations for what she did to Adelaide #1. She caused pain and torture to her double by switching them and so Adelaide #2 could be the stand in for those that directly harm someone they view as lesser than.

I don't think it necessarily has as much to do with race as some think (I've legit seen people being like wow look at this statement on race, when it's never actually mentioned the way it is in Get Out), but I do think that underlying it also covers the issues with slavery and the descendants of slaves deserving their reparations as well. I personally think it has a lot more to do with the well ignored class system in this country. So much poverty right under our noses that gets swept up under the rug and truly ignored. In my own city alone there is one of the WORST cases of poverty in our country, and it literally never gets acknowledged by the city. I remember once my cousin asking me what was the worst poverty I had seen and my first reaction was San Francisco because of the amount of homeless population they have, and he had responded with the population surrounding the Appalachian mountains when he went on a mission trip in high school, but neither one of us even thought about the literal just a couple miles away from where we literally were standing, and I regret that conversation so much because of it.

Anyway, that's what I think Jordan was commenting on if I'm being honest.

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1 hour ago, taylorannephoto said:

Yes, I do. But I also don't think it gets hurt by that reveal, albeit because of what was mentioned above about someone climbing the ladder and being terrified of falling back down, or because she herself is owing reparations for what she did to Adelaide #1. She caused pain and torture to her double by switching them and so Adelaide #2 could be the stand in for those that directly harm someone they view as lesser than.

I don't think it necessarily has as much to do with race as some think (I've legit seen people being like wow look at this statement on race, when it's never actually mentioned the way it is in Get Out), but I do think that underlying it also covers the issues with slavery and the descendants of slaves deserving their reparations as well. I personally think it has a lot more to do with the well ignored class system in this country. So much poverty right under our noses that gets swept up under the rug and truly ignored. In my own city alone there is one of the WORST cases of poverty in our country, and it literally never gets acknowledged by the city. I remember once my cousin asking me what was the worst poverty I had seen and my first reaction was San Francisco because of the amount of homeless population they have, and he had responded with the population surrounding the Appalachian mountains when he went on a mission trip in high school, but neither one of us even thought about the literal just a couple miles away from where we literally were standing, and I regret that conversation so much because of it.

Anyway, that's what I think Jordan was commenting on if I'm being honest.

I have trouble with this, because of how the Tethered are presented. It seems to me that they are essentially the monsters in the story, the remorseless killing machines. If the movie is about class struggle, is that how Peele views the American underclass? I kind of doubt that's the point he was trying to make.

The only one of the Tethered who can actively speak and communicate is one who was actually from the surface. Now, it is interesting that both versions of Adelaide are clearly capable of speech, so that does suggest the movie is making some distinction of nature vs. nurture, showing that it's possible for one of the Tethered to learn to act like a surface person. I'm still not comfortable with how the rest of the Tethered are characterized, though, which is why I don't think the movie's class critique holds up all that well.

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7 minutes ago, sycasey 2.0 said:

I have trouble with this, because of how the Tethered are presented. It seems to me that they are essentially the monsters in the story, the remorseless killing machines. If the movie is about class struggle, is that how Peele views the American underclass? I kind of doubt that's the point he was trying to make.

The only one of the Tethered who can actively speak and communicate is one who was actually from the surface. Now, it is interesting that both versions of Adelaide are clearly capable of speech, so that does suggest the movie is making some distinction of nature vs. nurture, showing that it's possible for one of the Tethered to learn to act like a surface person. I'm still not comfortable with how the rest of the Tethered are characterized, though, which is why I don't think the movie's class critique holds up all that well.

That's a very interesting take on it, because I think they are viewed as monstrous to those above ground, but to them this are just how they are, and they are literally pushed to murder. In my opinion, that's the way the pilgrims and "New World" settlers viewed the indigenous population of the Americas. They were viewed as savages who were considered dangerous. Just because the tethered do murder doesn't mean they are monsters automatically. I really do find them terrifying but that's because of the movements and smiles and it's totally tied to other terrifying imagery (mainly you can totally see Jordan's inspiration from Japanese horror) that I've seen previously, but they are the victims of their story. No matter how those of us above ground may view them, this is more like a rebellion than anything else.

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1 minute ago, taylorannephoto said:

That's a very interesting take on it, because I think they are viewed as monstrous to those above ground, but to them this are just how they are, and they are literally pushed to murder. In my opinion, that's the way the pilgrims and "New World" settlers viewed the indigenous population of the Americas. They were viewed as savages who were considered dangerous. Just because the tethered do murder doesn't mean they are monsters automatically. I really do find them terrifying but that's because of the movements and smiles and it's totally tied to other terrifying imagery (mainly you can totally see Jordan's inspiration from Japanese horror) that I've seen previously, but they are the victims of their story. No matter how those of us above ground may view them, this is more like a rebellion than anything else.

Though the issue with that is that the explanation for the Tethered's existence is that they were CREATED by humans, so it's not a case where humans were the invading force like Europeans coming to America. This is why I think the class critique is muddy. Peele might have been better off not explaining their origins at all, just leaving it as some kind of vague supernatural thing. Or if he is going to do that, I would have liked to see a bit more of how the Tethered lived, what kind of society they had below the surface, etc.

For me, the reading that works best is on a personal level: it's about our personal demons, the "shadow person" you don't want to let anyone else see but that sometimes shows up anyway. I also think the sci-fi origins make that reading difficult, but if I had to pinpoint a core idea then I think that's it.

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4 minutes ago, sycasey 2.0 said:

Though the issue with that is that the explanation for the Tethered's existence is that they were CREATED by humans, so it's not a case where humans were the invading force like Europeans coming to America. This is why I think the class critique is muddy. Peele might have been better off not explaining their origins at all, just leaving it as some kind of vague supernatural thing. Or if he is going to do that, I would have liked to see a bit more of how the Tethered lived, what kind of society they had below the surface, etc.

For me, the reading that works best is on a personal level: it's about our personal demons, the "shadow person" you don't want to let anyone else see but that sometimes shows up anyway. I also think the sci-fi origins make that reading difficult, but if I had to pinpoint a core idea then I think that's it.

She never says that they were created by humans though, and that goes back to a lot of questions I have about it, because it sounds like humans and their tethers were created by "something" else as an experiment that didn't pan out. I do agree though that the more he started to explain things the more questions I had which definitely took me out of the story a bit because I kept questioning things they had just said, and this is why I couldn't give it a full 5 stars.

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