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NPC Roundtable Review: GET OUT

“Get Out” is a new horror/thriller movie written and directed by Jordan Peele. It’s got the internet talking, to put it mildly. This week, a few of the NPC’s: Doug Funnie, DJAsh10, Soultron of D&D Sluggers, Godswill, and Mega Ran, saw the movie and had an e-discussion. Here is that conversation.

Question 1: What did you expect from the previews? How did it compare to what you saw?

DOUG FUNNIE: I expected a simple horror movie. Not much was pulled from the previews, since most of the suspense is left in the “meat and potatoes” of the film.

MEGA RAN: I thought this was gonna be a skit from Key and Peele gone 90 minutes too long… a gritty “Guess Who’s Coming To Dinner” or whatever… But what I saw was completely different on every level. It was darker, smarter and hit harder than any thriller I’ve seen. I can’t stop thinking about it.

ASH10: From the previews, I expected a horror filled, non-stop, heart pumping thrill ride.  And I received no less. The movie’s opening scene is wrought with racial commentary and complete with tension-building camera movement, piercing musical jump-cues and abrupt, shocking action.  The trailer reminded me of how freaked out I was about meeting my ex’s parents and the movie was all of my fears come to life.

D&D: I don’t know horror too well, but from the trailers I expected a lot of jump scares and cheap thrills.
This was kept to a minimum and the true horror for me came from looking back and realizing what was really going on, little by little getting the whole picture and freaking out a little when I realized how not normal things were.

GODSWILL: To be honest I didn’t think I would like it from the previews. I saw one preview (not sure if there were more since I’m doing my best to not watch previews) and I thought it would be jokey. I didn’t think it would be as serious as it ended up being. I was surprised when my friends thought the previews were hardcore and heavy when I thought the opposite.


Question 2: What surprised you the most about the film?

D&D: I mentioned realizing how not normal things were. What I mean is how the wack, uneducated things we are accustomed to hearing as people of color that we shrug off were even more sinister in the movie. It made me also think about how we shouldn’t be so inclined to play nice/ placate.

G: How much it affected me. Like I’m still shocked about how I’m still thinking of it.

A10: I want to tell you what surprised me most about the film but I feel that there is no way to say it without spoilers. For the most part, the trailer sets the scene and explains that this predominantly white, suburban community is doing something strange with black people. But the what and the why are the most shocking parts of the movie because honestly, it’s not that much of a farce.

MR: The ending…the grand plot reveal… I mean trying to figure out a motivation for all the craziness was hard, but once I got it, I went “aaahhhhhh” along with the rest of the theater. Didn’t see it going there.

DF: Yeah, it was not a scary film, but it was very unnerving.

Question 3: Did you leave the theater with questions? What were they?

A10: Questions? Did I have Questions? Did you even see that resolution?? Psshhhhht.

DF: This is my exact quote. “Wait, was this movie about Rachel Dolezal?”

MR: Ha! Not a lot of questions, just explanations for a lot. It’s literally the manifestation of every person who is against interracial dating’s worst fear. In our communities you hear things like “Don’t date those _____s, they might ______.” So this takes all of the silly prejudices that exist in all of us, and explores them like nothing before it.

Question 4: The film delves into a lot of controversial feelings on interracial dating. Have you had any strange occurrences dating interracially that you’d like to chat about?

DF: Most of my relationships are interracial. So, given that my partner has parents that grew up around that time of Racial Segregation, it’s hard to avoid the awkward conversations. Meeting the parents is always the hardest part cause being a person of color they already have a stereotypical image of the “Black boyfriend”. From there, it’s like “Well, do they know they are being insensitive, or don’t just don’t care?”

MR: Whew. Too many. The most insane one was my mother completely flipping out when I went to visit my then-girlfriend, who was white, in Arkansas for Spring Break during college, without telling her until I got there. I think she just felt like it was a trap and this girl was going to lure me onto a plantation where I would be…wait, I’m saying too much. But seriously my mom almost disowned me over that trip. She called every day demanding that I come home. I eventually bought another flight to get home early and she didn’t speak to me the entire time I was at home. We tried to make it work but that relationship was a wrap by next semester.

A10: Hahahaha, Ran! That’s what my mom thinks everytime I’m in an interracial relationship. I’m sure she was hoping the movie would have the same Effects as the Scared Straight program. When dating people of other races, I’ve never had a problem with their parents/families. But I have run across unusual situations with the people I’m actually dating. It could be anything from micro-aggressions to unconscious biases.

For brevity’s sake, I specifically remember dating a guy for months and randomly on a date he tells me, “ I hope you know that I can’t marry you.” Knowing that I hadn’t even put him in a marriage equation, I jokingly ask, “Oh, why is that?”
Him: “…because you’re black.”

D&D: I feel like my experiences are mostly what you would expect, but I was never allowed to meet my first girl friend’s grandparents because you know. They died not knowing she even had a boyfriend.

G: Yeah I have wondered about this for a good while. I have always thought about interracial dating as my friend group is very diverse. When I first dated a white girl, I ran through all the possible questions of whether she would accept me for my differences, whether her friends would accept me, whether her family would accept me, and so forth. It was pretty crippling and fearsome.


Question 5: Will this movie get any Oscar/Globes talk next year, in your opinion? Why/Why Not?

A10: The racial overtones in the film would normally allow me to easily say that the Academy would never consider it but with the recent Best Picture win from Moonlight and looking back at other Oscar nominated films in the same horror genre, I would say the film may get some noms. Definitely a Golden Globe. The film is first of its kind to successfully create a story so specific and pointed about white privilege, power and the disparities it creates. And it did all of this while still being fantastically and intelligently horrifying.

DF: Daniel Kaluuya should win a Oscar at the very least. I have seen in many previous projects including Black Mirror. Will it? Highly doubtful. The fact he is a English actor and I could not hear his accent at all. I feel that the racist backlash of the “indifferent” critics would only put this film in a negative light. It should at least be CONSIDERED for best original screenplay. The fact that Jordan Peele took roughly 5 years to create this should not go unnoticed.

A10: Yoooooo, I totally forgot that Daniel was in Black Mirror. I spent I spent the entire movie trying to place him. My overwhelming respect for him and the movie just went up 10 more points.

MR: Me too! Wow man British folks really impress me the way they pull off the American English accents. Original it is for sure. Wow.

..but nah. I’d like for it to, and the crazy good reviews lead me to believe the critics have to respect it, but I don’t think so. Unfortunately horror/thrillers aren’t usually in those conversations.. maybe if Emma Stone were the leading lady, haha.

G: I think it will get Oscar talk since it was so good (and as shown this past Sunday anything can happen), but I wonder if the comedy aspects “disqualify” it from winning big. 


Question 6: Though most reviews are positive, there is early criticism on the movie stating that it may be “anti-White.” Any opinion on that?
D&D: If the family was abducting robots or aliens, I doubt the “anti-white” sentiment would have come up.

MR: Welllllll..

A10: In 1967, white audiences were disarmed when Katharine Houghton brought Sidney Poitier home to meet her parents, Spencer Tracy and Katharine Hepburn, in Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner. Get Out, by any stretch of the imagination, is not that movie. Anyone expecting the warming feeling of a white family taking a black man in as their own, could have easily seen the film as anti-white. The film painted an extreme situation in order to magnify a deeper, societal issue.  Americans don’t like to talk about race because that conversation would have to come with some kind of reconciliation with one’s own history. When people are faced with the worst parts of themselves, they don’t always want to recognize it.

G: My opinion isn’t that it’s anti-White although it is very intense against White people. It’s more like White people are still doing these harmful practices against Blacks that has lasted since slavery times and Jim Crow era. These practices and mindsets undermine true interracial relationships (friends, lovers, colleagues, etc.)

A big thing that came up was whether Whites could see us as individuals and people rather than for our genetics.

tl;dr in my opinion, it’s not anti-White as it’s not like “we hate White people” it’s more like “hey look at us as regular people”

DF: I can see how would one can see it as “Anti-White” but at the same time the film was exactly “Pro-Black”. It’s simply the reality between white and black culture. There is an appropriation of black culture that is portrayed in this film, in as little as it may seem to others is huge for that culture. Those that don’t understand that see it as “Anti-white”
MR – I can see how self-concious folk could feel that way, and watching some of the scenes I felt like “man they’re really laying it on thick…” but they explain it all by the end. It’s justified and helps to push the main narrative, so I’d hardly call it an anti-white sentiment.

Question 7: Give the movie a grade, from A to F, and explain your answer.

DF: A. For multiple reasons, this film gave the audience members (non-african American) feel the awkwardness of people of non-color trying to relate to a person of color based on stereotypes. It’s just painfully strange, no matter the setting. It was enlightening to see that bought to light. It felt “Get out” was a tip of the hat to old school black horror films, like “Tales From The Hood” to bring real life themes to a undiscussed topic.

MR: I’ll give it a B+… great story, true jump scares and awesome twist and story that makes you think. Can’t ask for much more than that from a thriller.

G: I give it an A. I had just seen La La Land and I would say that’s like a B. I’m still thinking of Get Out and I’m telling people to go watch this.

D&D: an A, but queer black folk just barely slipped into the plot…but also surprised they did at all.

A10: I would definitely give this movie an A+. Jordan Peele successful merged a movie about racial tensions in America with a perfectly timed horror movie. Peele consistently tows the line between comedy and horror. Most conspiracy movies die out in the final act, but Get Out continues to reveal new depths to Peele’s genius. The script is tight and well thought, with minor details constantly revealing a deeper significance. Peele unapologetically uses current social fears about cultural appropriation, assimilation, prejudice and abuse of power.  With the acknowledgement of these tensions, he builds a foundation to channel it into an intense, morbid terror. And in this, I believe Peele has created one of the most meaningful and terrifying horror films of our time.

Sammus in Engadget

Screen Shot 2017-01-20 at 2.10.19 PM

Our own SAMMUS is the subject of a well-done and timely piece in Engadget on her space somewhere between Nerdcore and Afro-Futurism. As we all try to find our space in this crazy new world, POC’s are especially boxed in..but thanks to the art and hustle of folks like Sammus, we know that our voices are not going unheard.

“I think it’s going to continue to shift to skew more in the direction of lots of people of color, women, non-binary folks, who love games and love cartoons and love geek, nerd stuff, but want to use it to talk about their unique experiences,” Sammus says.

Read the rest here.

Enjoy the article? Go on Engadget and leave a comment!

October Game Releases!

OH MAN! October seems to be the Month that takes away all your money and have you stock up your XBOX or PS4 titles (Or Steam, of course) With re-releases like Duke Nukem 3D, Batman: Return to Arkham, and the sequel to Titan-Fall, there is more than reason enough to spend a few dollars to brush off the dust bunnies on your next gens (If you haven’t already) . Let’s see what excites the NPC Collective THIS MONTH!

Let’s start with the honorable mentions.

 

Dragonball Xenoverse 2, (Oct. 25)header

We here at the NPCC are huge anime fans, and we are no stranger to DragonBall Z. So, of course, we got excited when Xenoverse 2 was announced. If you enjoyed the first one, you should have a blast with the newest title. See what I did there? Only a few details are released about this game but they did provide a character list. I wonder if we will touch the new Super Saiyan God in this one?

 

Batman: Return to Arkham (Oct. 18)maxresdefault

Return to Arkham come with both Arkham Asylum and Arkham City along with all the DLC included. If you have not had the pleasure of taking down the goons of Arkham or if you just want to take over the role as Batman and run through these titles again, we highly recommend it.

 

Titanfall 2 (Oct. 28)titanfall-2-beta-698607

The most anticipated online FPS is back and this time with a offline story-mode. Personally, I didn’t have an Xbox One with the original title released but I am interested in the story-mode in a game that didn’t originally have one. A lot of upgrades from the original release along with more maps, more titans, and more details on the world of TitanFall. If they can pull off the single player mode as well as they pull of the online multiplayer, I’m sure this is a title some of us at the NPCC can sink our teeth into.

 

Duke Nukem 3D 20TH Anniversary Edition: World Tour (Oct 11) header-1

Ok, let’s remember the time where Duke Nukem: Forever wasn’t released. The time were you would replay your Duke Nukem games hoping that you would be able to play a new title with this Bubble-gum chewing “Bad*$$” in the next gen graphics. Well, this re-release is as close as you are going to get on a PS4 or Xbox that is tolerable. Why not give it a gander? At least, a Redbox rental….

 

Gears Of War 4 (PREORDERED: OCT 7TH, Worldwide Oct:11thgears_of_war_4

This Xbox title heavy weight is back, and takes place 25 years after Gears 3. New weapons, new enemies, new characters. Even though we are to see some of the original characters, we are sure that the story and gameplay will not fail to amaze. Rumor has it that the story will change depending on what character player 2 selects on co-op mode. I like the sound of that. While the replay value just increased, This is definitely on the Buy list.

Friday the 13th: The Video Game (Oct 2016, TBA) 2950665-friday

Similar to “Dead by Daylight”, this title plays just like a horror movie. In this case, Friday the 13th. One person plays as Jason Voorhees, and 7 other characters plays the camp counselors. The 7 players try to survive the juggernaut that is Jason or kill him by working together or going solo. This game uses the same crew of the “Friday the 13th” films, like Kane Hodder (Jason), Ronnie Hobbs (Writer), and Tom Savini (Make-up creator). With original creators of the film on board with the game, I highly doubt they will let their baby’s name be tarnished.

 

PS VR (Oct 2016, TBA) ps_vr_launch_bundle_story

This not actually a game, but we here are excited for the PS4 Add-on. Personally, I always wanted to have a VR game since I saw this on “The First Kid”.

Yes, the Sinbad Movie.old_vr_hmd

 

The initial titles are awesome, for example, Batman. Even though we already talked Batman on this list, why wouldn’t you want to be batman without the needed physical attributes? Hoping that more titles in the future will lean towards the VR experience, this may on the watch list for some until the hefty price of $499 drops to something more affordable.

 

This is the List for October, Comment below if we have missed anything that you are excited about. Don’t be shy, tell us why.

 

Doug Funnie

Childish Gambino’s “Pharos” Experience: The NPC Review

DETROIT, MI - MARCH 22: Donald Glover performs as Childish Gambino during his Deep Web Tour at The Fillmore on March 22, 2014 in Detroit, Michigan. (Photo by Scott Legato/Getty Images)

DETROIT, MI – MARCH 22: Donald Glover performs as Childish Gambino during his Deep Web Tour at The Fillmore on March 22, 2014 in Detroit, Michigan. (Photo by Scott Legato/Getty Images)

 

by Godswill Ugwa 

For more info:Donald Glover’s “Pharos.” 

This weekend I went to California for the Childish Gambino experience known as “Pharos”. I had no clue what this was gonna be, but being a big fan of CG, I had to go. Some people wanted me to share my experience so here goes.

I went but I can’t say that I really enjoyed it for the effort that was put in. The ticket was $99 and then I got a ticket to Orange County. And the concert was in Joshua Tree, a pretty secluded camping area that was 2 hours out.

We went and we were led into a giant domed room with a few hundred other fans. We waited in line and prayed that this wasn’t some cult experience in disguise. As we get inside they lock our phones in magnetically locked pouches. They waited for most everyone to come in and then they start.

The dome lights up and has these Dreamworks looking animations playing of these spirits and skeletons dancing. And Gambino comes out in some tribal garb (face and body paint as well as some dreads), but it’s hard to see him as his stage isn’t very high up.

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a cell phone pic by attendee @ahrceejr on Instagram

The concert lasts an hour and I’m honestly disappointed. It was a ton of singing that I wasn’t fortunate enough to really see or understand. It sounded very good though. However it wasn’t what I wanted or expected to be real.

I was disappointed for a few reasons though: it was only an hour, the animations didn’t really do much, the camp environment wasn’t really utilized, and even though the music was good it definitely wasn’t what I was hoping for. In a way I feel sorta tricked. Like the name Childish Gambino was used to bring out fans for this event, but it didn’t feel like it was a Gambino thing.

I want to embrace the evolutions that an artist will go through, but I can’t help but lament at times when the artist “loses” what I loved about him. I’m proud of Donald for what he does and what he has done and I’ll continue to support him (Atlanta anyone?). However I wouldn’t have made such a trip for an (IMO) ok concert. It reminds me of the disappointment I had for seeing Amazing Spider-Man 1 at the midnight showing, where you hype it up but it doesn’t live up and it becomes the (IMO) worst incarnation of the franchise/entity that you love. Yes I liked the mid-2000’s Spider-Man movies more.

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a commemorative #Pharos T-Shirt

But this is a conversation I’d like to have whether I’m complaining unfairly or on the money.

I am happy though that my friend EJ was so accommodating a host that I truly enjoyed my time there. The food, the spots, and the time we hung out together were very good times that made the trip worth it for me.

 -G
pharos
Did you catch “Pharos?” What are your thoughts on Gambino’s next chapter?

Metal Gear Survival (First Thoughts)

Greetings NPCs!

It’s your buddy, Doug Funnie, giving you a first look by the NPC Collective about the recently announced Metal Gear title, Metal Gear Survival. This new title has been taking the internet by storm and is causing some hoopla among the Metal Gear Fans, and I have a pretty good inkling on why. In order to do that, let’s go back a bit on the history.

The original Metal Gear title was created by Hideo Kojima and released in 1987. Originally was supposed to be an action game, but because of the technology at the time it became a “sneaking” game because too many sprites on the screen at one time would cause the system to crash. Thus, creating the first espionage tactical action game. This has been the running theme throughout the series, excluding “Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance” which was a spin-off game for one of the main characters of the series, Also created by Hideo Kojima.

Up until the most recent release of a Metal Gear Solid title, there has been speculation that Kojima was fired by Konami, the developer of the Metal Gear Solid titles. Though, an official statement was released by Konami that Kojima quit, no official statement from Kojima was ever released. This event has caused Metal Gear Solid 5 to be incomplete as well as cancel the highly anticipated “Silent Hill” release. While Kojima continues to move forward with the “Silent Hill” project under the Sony umbrella and new title “Death Stranding”, Konami continues the development of Metal Gear titles without Kojima, bringing the new “Metal Gear: Survival.”


(as of today the trailer stands at 18k thumbs ups to 81k thumbs downs).

The trailer starts with the exact cutscene from “Metal Gear Solid: Ground Zeroes” where the base is getting destroyed, then begins to follow a random character. From here, a rip in the space time continuum occurs and sucks this random character and most of the rubble of the destroyed base with it. As the trailer continues, you’ll find that the character goes on to fight zombie-like characters with apparent superhuman strength. Very similar to Resident Evil 5, where the zombie-like characters are infected by a parasite, but in this case, it seems to be a pink crystal or artifact. Around the 1:10 mark, You’ll see a structure in a distance which to me seems to be the base and the AI pod of the AI weapons in “Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker”. You’ll see other characters in the trailer fighting with you, which I assume these folks have been in this alternative dimension this whole time.

Details of the game provided by Konami reads, “it’s to be a four-player online co-op endeavour that takes place in an alternate timeline following the events of Ground Zeroes” Konami continues to say, ”Obviously Metal Gear is well-known for its stealth, that is, primarily, what makes Metal Gear. There is stealth in it, I know when you’re watching the trailer it’s all very action-packed and it doesn’t really elicit that feeling, but there will be stealth and one of the really interesting things that we will be exploring and playing with is how stealth and co-op can actually co-exist.”

As a Huge Metal Gear Fan, I am very skeptic about this title and, of course, questions. There was no doubt in my mind that Konami would continue the “Metal Gear” series but did not foresee the direction they took. To me, this title feels like a Metal Gear/ Resident Evil 4/5/6 mash-up, like it is modeling the title similar to RE but uses Metal Gear references to pull the fan base in. If you ever played, Resident Evil newer titles, no stealth is needed. It’s primarily run-and-gun, which gives you no room for stealth at all, especially given that your enemies are parasitic super-human.

So, how is it possible to have a 4-player co-op game but “stealthy?” Not to say this idea is not possible, but, if anyone were to pull this game off in a manner that would benefit the developers as well as the players/fans of the franchise, would be Hideo Kojima. Keep in mind that the release of Metal Gear Solid 5 was incomplete and caused the gaming community to search deep into the game to find the untold Chapter 3, that ultimately did not make it into the game, has left the fan base with a bad taste in their mouth and will need more than a “Spin-off” to put Konami back into their good graces.

NPC Collective member, Richie Branson, summed up the sentiment here.

At first glance at the trailer, that’s what it feels like. Personally, I’m hopeful for this title even though its very rough around the edges. I suppose we will see more details on the game in the near future. Until then, we will keep you posted with more NPCC thoughts and releases here.

Stay Tuned, Much Love.

DF