When Rian Johnson (Star Wars Episode VIII: The Last Jedi) gets iconoclastic, there is no one who surpasses him: with Knives Out, the Agatha Christie-style mystery cinema is shattered in such a way that all the commonplaces of the genre are mocked and keeping the audience on hold until the end.
Not happy with that, which already sets up a joyful and elusive film experience, creates a gallery of characters that constantly put on the ropes, forcing them to portray and show their dirty rags. Thus, once the mask is removed one by one, we will discover what their true intentions are, their prejudices and the real motivations that move them. Watch now the movie to find out who they really are for yourself.
It all begins as one of those classic metalinguistic stories: a renowned mystery novelist named Harlan Thrombey appears slaughtered after celebrating his 85th anniversary in the family mansion. Just what could be the argument of any of his books.
Recruited anonymously, Detective Benoit Blanc shows up at the scene to try to clarify whether the death was a voluntary suicide or if it is a murder. In this way, he will be pulling the thread until he understands the tangled network of family relationships that pollute the environment and create great doubts about the possible interests to inherit his editorial and the rights of his novels.
No one is exempt from accountability to Blanc: from his children to the people who took care of him, among whom is his nurse Marta Cabrera, a woman who does not tolerate lies, to the point that formulating one leads her to vomit.
Rian Johnson's script is quite convoluted: when the viewer seems to have formulated a possible thesis about what happened in Knives Out, he twists a little more logic to make us think again.
Neither short nor lazy, the filmmaker has gathered in front of the camera a true dream team in which we find Christopher Plummer, Jaime Lee Curtis, Michael Shannon, Daniel Craig, Toni Collette, Chris Evans, Don Johnson, to Katherine Langford and Jaeden Martell, although who stands out for her masterful interpretation is Ana de Armas (Blade Runner).
The actress not only carries on her shoulders with a well-deserved leading role in Knives Out but is the one who drives the entire plot involuntarily becoming the focus of attention. Meanwhile, much entanglement: guilt on the part of some, secrets to hide from others, betrayals, hidden messages, erased clues, sharp knives and a huge mansion of strong backlights that keep the true author in the shadow, until the end.
Daniel Craig, by the way, seems to especially enjoy his histrionic character, realizing the feast that awaits us when he hangs up Agent 007's suit after No Time to Die and therefore can devote himself to work more on less demanding films on a physical level but also very satisfactory at the interpretive level.
As we have already announced from the beginning, there is more willingness to get mad at the clichés than to put them on their feet in an exhaustive way to deceive the viewer (although this also ends up getting them), which leads Johnson to emerge from the darkness to Craig while lighting a cigarette, to find that the faces of the protagonists are always in the middle of the light, to recreate in the camera shots to show the magnificence of the mansion and to recharge both the environments and the soundtrack, in which there are no shortage watermarks and that is the work of Nathan Johnson, with whom the director had already worked in Brick, in the Bloom brothers, and in Looper.
In short, this parody of mystery films wins when it becomes more eccentric, letting the actors take their characters to extremes and delivering real pleasure with which it is impossible not to laugh.