One of the first observations I made while watching Nope (Jordan Peele, 2022) is that Daniel Kaluuya looks down often, opting not to make eye contact with the camera or whomever he is speaking to in various scenes. It’s not that he looks at his own feet as much as it’s a lowering of his gaze. It’s a character trait and a plot detail that becomes relevant later on in the science-fiction musing on extraterrestrial biology. He also looks up at the sky as narratively warranted (until it isn’t).
Another immediate reaction I had was why in the world anyone would bite their glove…finger-first. I know why a person would do it, but why. Think of all the surfaces that fabric has touched.
Angel (Brandon Perea), the Fry’s employee, is possibly my favorite component of the movie. I know the electronics chain was struggling already before covid happened, but it couldn’t have stuck it out at least through the end of this year? I wanted to go to one so much after watching this film on DVD. Perea brings a determination to his character’s goals that function as a much-needed (even if ephemeral) example of goal-oriented motivation for me as I continue struggling to accepting having a human experience rather than a feline one or an ornithological one.
For a more in-depth contemplation of the story and structure of Nope, make your way over to Jordan and Eddie. I shall wrap up this post with a list of what I learned from the special features:
~ Close Encounters of the Third Kind (Steven Spielberg, 1977) was one of many sources of inspiration for Jordan Peele.
~ The sky is the ocean. The UFO is a “critter” and is just hungry all the time.
~ Robert Maplethorpe‘s photographs of orchids, Marilyn Monroe’s white dress billowing, ships’ sails, and jellyfish all informed the movement of what the film characters refer to as “Jean Jacket.”
~ Kelsi Rutledge contributed to the conceptual behavior of Jean Jacket. Specifically, she provided insights on how to make an alien creature believable.
Pic creds: Amazon, IMDB, Universal Pictures, YT screenshot