Rian Johnson's Knives Out takes cliches from murder mysteries and utilizes them to new effect. It's intricate, funny, and unexpectedly fast-paced while utilizing a hardworking all-star cast.
Rian Johnson: I'm one of those people that really loved The Last Jedi, so there were certain expectations for me going into this movie. Needless to say, Rian Johnson shattered those expectations. He wrote a complex yet good-natured murder mystery, giving you the clues throughout the story before pulling the rug out from under you. I know that expression is extremely overused, but it's really what happens. He set up expectations for what this movie was supposed to be and crafts it to be something completely different. It's Agatha Christie meets Clue meets Crime and Punishment and I love every gut-busting second of it. The best part is that on a second viewing, every single thing has a different meaning; and every second meaning promotes dual characteristics.
The Cast: Every single member leans into their characters with enthusiasm and fully commits to the roles. Daniel Craig is wonderful as the lead detective, constantly on the line between parody and real-life Sherlock Holmes. Chris Evans plays directly against his Captain America, clearly having the time of his life with it. Jamie Lee Curtis plays ruthless like no other, constantly protective yet always on offense. Michael Shannon plays a little bit into his type but ultimately shines through; he flexes his range, going from improv king to terrifying in an instantly smooth transition. Toni Colette plays comedy like no other; she somehow appropriately and sympathetically plays a spoiled rich person. Everyone else in the cast melds together perfectly. The standout of standouts is Ana de Armas. She blends drama and comedy deftly, taking her character on a wonderfully original journey. She sells every second of it.
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