Jordan Peele is known for directing iconoclastic horror films that contain social messages for the audience. His unique approach to the horror genre even earned him an Oscar for his debut film, Get Out (2017). After gaining success with his second film Us, he came back in direction with his third film, Nope.
Though Peele's horror films generally convey social messages, this one is not all about them. Peele, a successful comedian turned director, introduced comedic elements this time, but not in the subtle way that he did in Get Out; instead, the comedy is loud here. Also, Nope doesn’t have the same level of nerve-wracking horror as Us; rather, the gory extraterrestrial horror scenes are mellowed down by adding some humour.
Daniel Kaluyya unites with Peele once again, portraying OJ Haywood in this film. He along with his sister Emerald lives in an isolated town in California and looks over their family ranch full of horses.
They claim to be the descendants of the unnamed black jockey from one of the earliest motion pictures, The Horse in Motion, created by Eadweard Muybridge. The social message of the black history erasure spanning decades is hinted at by this.
But the Haywood siblings didn’t look over the ranch from the start. Their father, Otis Sr., is killed for unknown reasons.
As the story continues, the siblings discover that their father's death wasn’t caused by any known living being, but by an extraterrestrial creature, which they initially thought was a UFO spaceship. This creature is also vanishing their horses one by one, thus solving the missing horses' case.
Already struggling financially, the Haywood siblings enlist help to gain proof of the alien and earn money from it. But the alien is not any forgiving creature, attacking and devouring anybody who sees it.
This characteristic resembles hostile otherworldly beings in another film Bird Box, where the creatures make whoever witnesses them commit suicide.
The alien, dubbed ‘Jean Jacket,’ kills many of the Haywood siblings' acquaintances who are curious enough to gather proof of it. After many sacrifices, will the Haywood siblings be able to win against the creature and turn around their fate? The 131-minute-long movie has the answer.
Nope isn't as suspenseful as Jordan Peele's previous two films, but a clever combination of horror and humour makes this film more iconoclastic than his other rule-bending films. In Nope, Peele gives an ample amount of screentime to Keke Palmer, the famous American actress known for comedy roles and portrayed Emerald, whose presence and witty remarks ensure the existence of comedy.
Peele also paid homage to many other horror and science-fiction films here, such as ET, Jaws, and even the anime Neon Genesis Evangelion.
Witnessing the continuous success of Peele's horror films, it can be said that nothing could go wrong as long as he twists the rules of horror films and the audience enjoys it.