Us ★★

With 2017’s breakout horror hit Get Out, Jordan Peele cemented himself as the writer/director to watch, his acerbic wit and mind for brilliant visual metaphors combining to make the world love smart, social horror once more—even while it’s telling us to look in the mirror. With his sophomore film Us, Peele once more raises the looking glass to our eyes, this time inviting us to pass through it and discover a netherworld we’ve long tried to ignore. Part home-invasion horror, part Twilight Zone mystery-thriller, Us follows Adelaide Wilson (a remarkable Lupita Nyong’o) as she returns to the seaside town where she suffered a traumatic event as a child. Soon after she and her husband Gabe (Winston Duke) arrive with their children Jason (Evan Alex) and Zora (Shahadi Wright Joseph), their summer home is besieged by vengeful, jumpsuit-wearing doppelgangers. Unfortunately, the film that follows is not as clear or incisive as Get Out—it introduces so many ideas that it can be difficult to focus. But it’s fascinating to watch those ideas emerge, contort and dance around on screen, even if they don’t always come together to form a cohesive story. Like its predecessor, Us makes you laugh and ruminate more than scream, but that’s certainly Peele’s point. When you’re not marveling at the acting abilities of Nyong’o, you’ll be spinning your wheels trying to put together a puzzle that can’t be solved. Watch it at Assembly Row, Boston Common, Coolidge Corner, Fenway, SeaportSomerville, South Bay and in the suburbs.

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