So there’s a nice dust-up starting between the Hollywood Foreign Press Association and Jordan Peele, the sketch-show comic who wrote and directed “Get Out.”
The Golden Globes-givers say “Get Out” will be entered in the “best musical or comedy” category for consideration.
It should get in (weak year for comedies) and has a strong chance of winning.
And Peele is pissed. He takes issue with the category. He’s jokingly called the horror tale of an affluent community where black lives are taken to prolong rich which lives “a documentary.”
He wants it taken seriously, which is fine. But press him and he’d have to admit “Get Out” not only has laughs, that was its intent. It’s a darkly comic satire. “Dr. Strangelove” is the quintessential satire worth referencing here, a movie about accidental nuclear war, as serious as a heart-attack — and funny.
And sending up something in the culture.
The playwright George S. Kauffman famously joked that “Satire’s what closes Saturday night,” as in “nobody gets it and nobody will buy tickets.” That wasn’t the case with “Get Out,” a stunning smash of the spring, a real eye-opener.
As I am tired of explaining what “satire” means on Facebook, let me just link to the Wikipedia definition of it.
And while there may be a disconnect between how black and white audiences take it, the Globes got this one right. It is satire. And Peele, while stirring up publicity, is sharp enough to know that straight out. He’s not one of these people I’ve had angry emails from over the years when I’ve characterized an African American satire (“Dear White People”) as “a dark comedy.” Nothing to do with pigeon-holing, not “dark” as in skin color. Dark in tone, touching and torching some deep, secret “how people REALLY feel” truth.
Does Peele really want his movie competing with the likes of “Dunkirk,” “The Post,” “Florida Project,” “Darkest Hour” and the other crowded list of late-year best picture possibilities?
No. If he’s lucky, he’ll have a trophy to take home, because the worst case scenario is that the equally dark and funny “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri” will get shoved into “best musical or comedy,” and then it’s anybody’s race to call.
So let me say this for the first time in my life. The Golden Globes got it right.