Globes and “Get Out,” a comedy?

gettSo 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.

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4 Responses to Globes and “Get Out,” a comedy?

  1. I agree that Get Out has some funny moments Roger but it’s def not a comedy. Similar to The Martian a couple years ago funny but not a comedy. The Golden Globes just likes to have as many people show up to there party a possible. And lets not confuse this with other awards shows this is a party!!!. Hopefully they will all have fun and eat and drink a lot.

    • Read the post, go to the link on the word “Satire.” Read the definition. Satire is most often, broadly speaking, comic. That’s where I would put it, within the Globes universe.

      • Roger I understand the definition of satire. I would categorize it more as horror but I understand why you think it deserves to be in the best comedy or musical category. The big question is will it be nominated for an Oscar for Best picture in your opinion. I feel it just might get a nod.

      • It’s the difference between a horror movie, where a cult say, is stealing the bodies of the living to prolong its member’s lives, and a film in which the super-rich/whiter-than-white are stealing black bodies to accomplish the same thing. It’s obviously satire in horror form. They hand out as many as ten best picture Oscar nominations. “Dunkirk,” probably “Disaster Artist,” maybe “Florida Project” and/or “Three Billboards,” probably “Phantom Thread,” “The Post,” “Darkest Hour,” “Lady Bird,” possibly “Greatest Showman.” I’d say it has as much chance as “Logan” to get into that top ten. Calling it a “horror” movie won’t help. And “Logan” is far from a sure thing.

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