Director: Jordan Peele
Cast: Daniel Kaluuya, Keke Palmer, Steven Yeun
Release Date: October 25, 2022
A Review By: Kevin Lovell
Film Rating: 9/10
Disc Rating: 8.5/10
Jordan Peele reimagines the summer movie with NOPE, an expansive epic of uncanny science fiction. Following their father’s shocking death, Hollywood animal wrangler OJ (Kaluuya) and his sister Emerald (Palmer) begin observing unexplained phenomena on their vast Southern California ranch that leads them down an obsessive rabbit hole as they plot attempts to capture the mystery on camera. Along with a former child star turned family theme park ringmaster (Yeun) who neighbors the siblings, the pair’s efforts to chase the spectacle soon bring terrifying consequences and unimaginable horror. The result is a complex social thriller that unpacks the seeds of violence, risk and opportunism that are inseparable from the romanticized history of the American West … and from show business itself.
Please Note: Universal Pictures Home Entertainment provided me with a free copy of the 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray I reviewed in this Post. The opinions I share are my own.
‘Nope’ tells the story of a Hollywood animal wrangler family whose lives are thrown into disarray following the death of their father under peculiar circumstances. As his son OJ and daughter Emerald take over the business to the best of their ability, they soon encounter mysterious happenings occurring in and around their ranch. Figuring that they can cash in on capturing this mysterious entity on film, they set up cameras throughout the property. But as they become more determined to catch something on film, the danger and horrifying events only increase drastically. Pretty soon they’ll be forced to fight for their lives on top of trying to capture the phenomenon as it sets its sights on their land and the theme park operating next door.
Written, produced and directed by Jordan Peele (Get Out, Us) who does a fantastic job at the helm of ‘Nope’ guiding along the thrilling, visually spectacular and often satirical horror event tale. The film’s cast includes Daniel Kaluuya (Get Out), Keke Palmer (Hustlers), Steven Yeun (The Humans), Michael Wincott (Forsaken) and Brandon Perea (TV’s The OA) who each offer fitting and solid performances for the most part in their respective roles, although Palmer often tends to steal the show throughout.
‘Nope’ is a smart, witty and visually gorgeous offering from filmmaker Jordan Peele that’s as amusing and over the top as it is tense, carefully plotted and exciting. It’s an event film that goes big and offers up plenty of spectacular sequences that are always a thrill to behold while at the same time a joy to witness how expertly crafted they are. It’s also in many ways a social satire in its own right that dissects our world’s obsession with filming and capturing every potentially unknown or exciting thing that we come across and how too many folks are far more concerned with the documentation than the potential danger and trouble that might come with attempting to capture something uncertain or previously unseen. Seeking fame and trending popularity honestly seems to be the most important thing to so many these days and ‘Nope’ cleverly explores that while taking it to new extremes in order to showcase just how illogical or unwise it might be at times. Peele does a great job once again at the helm of this one and the stellar cast led by Daniel Kaluuya and Keke Palmer only help to really allow the film to become something quite special.
Overall, ‘Nope’ is a beautifully constructed tale of a family that runs an animal wrangling business and ranch in Hollywood that is plagued by mysterious events, and the siblings who inherited it as they begin to obsess about a way to capture it on film and cash in on the phenomenon. Both a horror event thriller and a dissection of the current world itself, filmmaker Jordan Peele serves up a curious and thoroughly engaging new film that dares to do something that’s different, yet also strangely familiar. ‘Nope’ is definitely recommended, especially if you enjoy Peele’s unique horror films or if you appreciate an event film that’s quite different from most of the big budget blockbusters hitting your local multiplex. It’s a fun, clever and gorgeous film that is definitely worth taking the time to check out if you’re already looking forward to it in the slightest and haven’t yet had the chance to give it a whirl.
The 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray release of ‘Nope’ features a full 2160p Ultra High Definition presentation with HDR-10, with a variable Aspect Ratio that alternates between a 2.39:1 Cinemascope Aspect Ratio and a 1.78:1 Aspect Ratio for select sequences. The video presentation looks wonderful as a whole and delivers a clean, sharp and richly detailed presentation from start to finish that never suffers from any unexpected issues to be uncovered along the way. It holds up great even during the darkly lit and fast moving moments and keeps everything from animals, backgrounds and foundations to facial details and more looking great. The HDR-10 addition also contributes a nice balance of colors complemented by added depth that stands out even more during the action and spectacle scenes. Overall, this is a quite stellar Ultra High Definition video presentation that looks sharp and great every step of the way and it should easily satisfy fans and first time viewers alike.
The 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray release features a Dolby Atmos (Dolby TrueHD 7.1 channel compatible) soundtrack. Please note that this review pertains solely to the Dolby TrueHD 7.1 audio presentation. This multichannel soundtrack provides a clean, sharp and hard hitting audio presentation throughout. It repeatedly utilizes all seven available channels in order to send the unknown object whipping past, along with animal, nature and some action effects, plus weather elements and a great deal more making its way throughout the various speakers, all while never conflicting with any simultaneously occurring audio elements which each remain clean and fully audible. Overall, this is a fantastic Dolby Atmos (Dolby TrueHD 7.1 compatible) soundtrack that delivers beautifully across the board and should easily thrill viewers.
The 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray release of ‘Nope’ includes some noteworthy extras that fans of the film should enjoy. Included on the release are ‘Deleted Scenes’ from the movie (running approximately 9 minutes in length altogether), along with a ‘Gag Reel’ (running approximately 5 minutes). We are also treated to the Behind the Scenes documentary ‘Shadows: The Making of Nope’ (running approximately 56 minutes) which explores the process of bringing the film to life and features interviews/comments with the cast and crew, plus behind the scenes footage and more. Also included are a couple other Featurettes including ‘Call Him Jean Jacket’ (approximately 14 minutes) and ‘Mystery Man of Muybridge’ (approximately 5 minutes).
*Please note that the above images are taken from the Blu-Ray disc included in the 4K UHD Combo Pack and resized. They do not represent the quality of the 4K Ultra HD disc itself and will additionally suffer quality loss as a result of .jpg compression. Larger versions of each image can be viewed by clicking on the image. All images and content included on the 4K UHD & Blu-Ray release are the property of their respective owners.
Film Rating: 9/10
Disc Rating: 8.5/10
‘Nope’ is Now Available to Own on 4K Ultra HD, Blu-ray, DVD & Digital from Universal Pictures Home Entertainment
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