When it comes to a classic “whodunnit,” it’s fair to say that reinventing the wheel (perhaps donut would be more apt in this case) is no easy task. After all, no matter how many clever twists and turns a movie that falls into that category delivers, the end result is almost always the same. There’s a murder, a number of suspects, and then the big reveal. Knives Out, however, delivers something completely fresh and unexpected by turning everything we think we know about the genre on its head and, as a result, it’s a legitimate contender for the best movie of 2019.
To go into what it is that makes Rian Johnson’s first movie since he visited a Galaxy Far, Far Away so different would be to get into spoiler territory but suffice to say that Knives Out will exceed and upend your expectations in almost every respect and what follows is a thoroughly thrilling movie that boasts a terrific script and stellar direction. With an unbelievable ensemble cast, it’s also a star studded affair without a single bad performance. Daniel Craig’s brilliant Southern drawl and sharp witted detective is excellent and while his character stole the show in the trailers, the film actually belongs to Ana de Armas. She’s a magnetic presence and as hard to tear your eyes away from as the compelling story that plays out on screen. Honestly, we could spend all day praising each individual cast member but Chris Evans is perhaps most deserving of a special mention as he goes from playing America’s Ass to an entitled one. He’s spent so long suiting up as a superhero that it’s easy to forget the other great characters he’s brought to the screen over the years and if Knives Out is any indication of what comes next for him, it’s going to be a lot of fun following his post-MCU career.
It’s also a movie that feels extremely timely and beyond those whodunnit elements, it has a lot to say about everything from the current state of America to the way the wealthy treat those beneath them. Johnson could have easily just stuck to blockbuster filmmaking after delivering a $1 billion Star Wars movie but he’s instead decided to take a risk with a project that asks a lot from its audience and his gamble clearly paid off based on those opening weekend numbers. With delightful visuals and perhaps the best monologue about donut holes you’ll ever find, Knives Out is a must-see and a refreshing addition to both this genre and theaters in general as original tales as amazing as this one become harder to find.
A classic yet still thoroughly original whodunnit, Knives Out makes great use of it’s incredible cast and will keep you guessing from start to finish.
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