Chris Peckover is an American film writer and director. He is best known for his contributions to “Better Watch Out”(2016) and “Undocumented” (2010). His creative genius behind the scenes in indisputable and he understands what it takes to achieve the undertones that make a movie pop. These are things that are obvious about the talented filmmaker, but here are five things that you didn’t know about him.
1. Chris Packover tackles rugged social issues
Violence is a fact of life in the real world and though it’s something that most of us try to avoid, it’s a topic that is real and ignoring it doesn’t make it go away. Peckover has a real flair for getting down to the nitty gritty of reality as seen in his 2010 film “Undocumented.” The film is about a group of undocumented workers in a documentary format. The film shows how racial prejudice and hatred leads to unconscionable acts on others as vigilantes who are known for committing acts of violence and murder on non-US citizens, intercept the group of illegal workers. He shows it like it is and if it’s shocking, then maybe it’s time to do more about the situation.
2. Peckover gained understanding of inequality from his wife
Chris shared that his wife is a teacher at a high school. She works with many undocumented students. This gives him a little insight into the real circumstances that surround the many undocumented migrants in this country. It not only drives home the fact that these are men and women with families who are just trying to survive, but that also innocent children are caught up in the drama when hate crimes are committed.
3. Peckover has done his own private research incognito
As any good writer and director would, Chris was seeking inspiration for the story that he was to write and so he donned a disguise and went incognito. He investigated the border monitoring militia movement and entered the group as a college reporter that was sympathetic to the cause. He listened to them as they shared their points of view so he could more closely associate the beliefs of the character Z and his cronies with the current sentiments in similar groups. While he didn’t run into any particularly bloodthirsty members, he did find out more about their perspectives.
4. He felt the need to go lighter on his second film
Chris Peckover is a guy that has a good sense of balance. Although “Undocumented” was a good movie that contained the right elements to make it popular, it had such a dark and violent side that he wanted to create something that would be much lighter. He chose to give his viewers something that would give them a break from the shock and disgust that the former film generated. “Better Watch Out” Although it’s about a home invasion, he made it much lighter and we’re not seeing as much of the dark side of humanity. Ashley is a babysitter and one of the victims of the home invasion. She stays strong and doesn’t flinch. This isn’t a feel good movie and there are some sick characters involved but on the violence and gut wrenching scenes, it’s come way down on the scale. Peckover knows how to set viewers’ teeth on edge, but he’s also shown that he’s the master of modification and he knows how to turn it down a few notches.
5. He is also an actor
In addition to being a writer and director, Chris Peckover has also done a bit of acting himself. The format that he has chosen to appear in movies reminds us a lot of the cameos that M. Knight Shaymaylan is fond of making in each of his films. He served as a background actor in the 2010 “Breast Picture” and in the 2007 short film “Alive and Well” as a crash screamer.