Ostensibly a sci-fi film about a U.F.O. that’s abducting people in a small desert town, Jordan Peele uses the framework of an old-fashioned monster movie as a launching pad to explore familial bonding, Hollywood exploitation, and (of all things) the practicalities and dangers of animal wrangling.
Daniel Kaluuya and Keke Palmer play O.J. and Em, siblings who inherit a horse ranch from their father, and the latest in a multigenerational line of Hollywood horse trainers. They discover that something in the sky is killing their horses, and convinced that they’ve found evidence of alien life, they decide to become filmmakers themselves, and will stop at nothing to get the greatest shot ever caught on celluloid.
“Nope” isn’t just one movie; it’s obsessed with the possibilities of the whole cinematic medium and explores as many of its avenues as possible within a single, masterfully directed motion picture. “Nope” is thrillingly executed on every technical level and deeply rich with insights about cinema and obsession and mankind’s ill-advised compulsion to assert our dominance over the animal kingdom. Peele’s latest is an instant classic horror movie, an instant classic sci-fi movie, and one of the best and most exciting films ever made about filmmaking.